A Mercurial Mayor Fights City Hall...And May Commit Political Sacrilege

Dropping his drawers and showing his buttocks to a student assembly may seem like a curious gambit, but it launched Antanas Mockus out of the ivory tower and into an astonishing political debut. After Mockus' 1993 caper, moralists of Colombia's conservative Catholic society drummed him out of the rectory of the National University. But in losing a rector, they got a mayor. Bogota elected the mercurial mathematics and philosophy professor by a wide margin on Sept. 30, 1994.

To continue reading this article you must be a Bloomberg Professional Service Subscriber.