About the Author
Diogo Freitas do Amaral is a professor at the University of Lisbon’s School of Law. As a founder and leader of the Social Democratic Center party, he played an instrumental role in establishing democracy in his country. He served as president of the United Nations General Assembly in 1995–96. This essay is based on a lecture that he delivered at George Washington University on 6 April 1998. The lecture, one in a series entitled “The Democratic Invention,” was co-sponsored by the Luso-American Development Foundation, the Mário Soares Foundation, and the International Forum for Democratic Studies.