This article suggests that transnational motives have remained key components of legitimation strategies for regional realignment in Latin America. Specifically, we assess the legitimation strategy of the late Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez and the associated political movement, Chavismo, as a recent case of transnational identity politics. Studies of Chavismo have stressed its role in the changing balance of power in early twenty-first-century Venezuela and the redrafting of global alliances, through a series of organizational moves and petrodollars. Combined with these political and economic boosters, Chavismo’s impact was sustained through a strategy that sought legitimation by drawing on earlier narratives of the solidarity of “Nuestramérica” (Our America), used in reshaping transnational networks within the region and beyond. This identity layer provided a basis for regional and international realignment and organizational creation, even if more recently it lost traction and became criticized for its unfulfilled promises and growing gap between rhetoric and implementation.
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© 2019 The Author(s).