This book, the inaugural publication in a multivolume series entitled Latin America in Global Perspective, highlights the necessity and feasibility of analyzing Latin American society and politics within broad comparative frameworks.The rapidly changing agenda for social science research on the region calls for the rigorous application of new concepts and methodologies, especially in light of the apparent exhaustion of the ?dependency? paradigm. The examination of broad themes, such as development strategies and processes of democratization, can be facilitated through systematic comparisons with other world regions, and the study of specific issues?such as electoral behavior or social inequality?requires the judicious use of quantitative measurement. The question, therefore, is not only what to investigate but also how.This volume brings together original research by distinguished scholars from a variety of countries. Analytical chapters explore methodological strategies for cross-regional comparison, intraregional comparison, and the application of rational choice; topical chapters offer new approaches to the study of women, state power, corporatism, and political culture. A concluding section examines the political significance of public opinion research in Mexico, Peru, and the former Soviet Union.