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Timely and unique, this innovative volume provides a critical examination of the role of civil society and its relation to the state throughout left-led Latin America. Featuring a broad range of case studies from across the region, from the Bolivian Constitution to participative budgeting in Brazil to the communal councils in Venezuela, the book examines to what extent these new initiatives are redefining state-civil society relations. Does the return of an active state in Latin America imply the incorporation of civil society representatives in decision-making processes? Is the new left delivering on the promise of participatory democracy and a redefinition of citizenship, or are we witnessing a new democratic deficit? A wide-ranging analysis of a vital issue, both for Latin America and beyond.