University of Miami International and Comparative Law Review


The language of democracy and democratic organization is usually spoken only in the vernacular of liberal democracy. Liberal democracy, mostly of western origin centers legitimacy of a political order on open, full, and free election for representatives, as well as a substantially unregulated civic space in which individuals and others can engage in political discourse. This essentially exogenous form of democratic organization has been increasingly challenged in the 21st century by an alternative model of endogenous democracy more compatible with states organized along Marxist Leninist principles. These emerging forms of endogenous democratic practices have been developed along two distinct lines, one embedded in developing principles for Chinese Marxism-Leninism, and the other grounded in the leadership of Raúl Castro from 2011. It traces the pragmatic and theoretic developments from early efforts around the development of the Guidelines for Reform of 2011, through the articulation of a new political and economic model in 2016, and then emerging in its current 2.0 form in the elaborate process of popular consultation and affirmation of the 2019 Cuban Constitution. The paper covers the challenges, contradictions, and potential for this endogenous form of democracy.