Germán Carrera Damas, Venezuelan historian and the author of Rómulo Betancourt: His Historical Personality and the Genesis of Modern Democracy in Venezuela, will launch the English-language edition of his book at the University of Florida on Monday, October 18, at 4:00 p.m. Carrera Damas will be joined in conversation by former UF president John V. Lombardi (1990‒1999) and the book’s translator, Elizabeth Lowe.

The event will be hosted by the UF Center for Latin American Studies. It will take place at the Isser and Rae Price Library of Judaica at UF’s Smathers Library East.

The book explores the political ideas and legacy of Rómulo Betancourt, the “father of Venezuelan democracy.” A transformational figure in Venezuelan history, Betancourt overthrew the ruling military dictatorship in 1940 and established a modern democratic regime, serving as Venezuela’s president from 1945‒1948 and again from 1959‒1964. Rómulo Betancourt has been a Spanish-language classic in the country since its publication in 2013.

In the foreword to the English-language edition, Lombardi wrote, “Rómulo Betancourt is one of those people who made a difference, not only for his native Venezuela but as an exemplar of what might be possible for other nations in their quest for freedom and democracy.” The new translation will help English speakers understand the cultural context of Venezuela’s contemporary moment and gain insights into what it takes to create and sustain a democratic republic under difficult circumstances.

For more information about the event, click here.

About the Speakers

Germán Carrera Damas is retired professor of history at the Central University of Venezuela and has served as Venezuela’s ambassador to Colombia, Mexico, and the Czech Republic. John V. Lombardi is a scholar of Latin American history and the ninth president of the University of Florida. Elizabeth Lowe teaches in the MS in Translation and Interpreting program at New York University. 

About the UF Center for Latin American Studies

The Center’s mission is to advance knowledge about Latin America and the Caribbean and its peoples throughout the Hemisphere, and to enhance the scope and quality of research, teaching, and outreach in Latin American, Caribbean and Latinx Studies at the University of Florida.

About the University of Florida Press

The University of Florida Press (UF Press) publishes books in subjects including Latin American and Caribbean studies, sustainability and resilience, bioarchaeology and Southeastern archaeology, and space history. The UF Press journals program publishes ten journals in various academic disciplines.

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