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authoritarianism



  • Tim Snyder Discusses Putin's "Big Lie" about Ukraine on Maddow

    Timothy Snyder, history professor at Yale University and author of "Bloodlands," talks with Rachel Maddow about the manipulative power of a "Big Lie" and why it's so difficult to untangle a person from a Big Lie once they've bought into it.



  • Authoritarianism Isn't Just About Personality Cults

    Recent books on "strongmen" reduce the problem of authoritarianism to the phenomenon of charismatic leadership and ignore many of the structural factors contributing to democratic collapse. 



  • Revenge of the Patriarchs: Why Autocrats Fear Women

    by Erica Chenoweth and Zoe Marks

    "Fully free, politically active women are a threat to authoritarian and authoritarian-leaning leaders—and so those leaders have a strategic reason to be sexist."



  • Now is the Time to Revisit Arendt's Origins of Totalitarianism

    by Anne Applebaum

    The political and economic supports for stability and prosperity in the developed world are more precarious than ever; the revival of authoritarianism that Arendt predicted may be at hand, making her work more vital than ever. 



  • Trolling History: Social Media Harassment From Abroad

    by Alexandra F. Levy

    In authoritarian regimes there are fewer and fewer safeguards for historians whose work challenges nationalistic myths; often harassment has a green light from the state. 



  • Fascism's "Legal Phase" is Here, and the Threat is Real

    by William Horne

    The authoritarian right has identified the institutional weak points in American institutions and is preparing to exploit them to seize power and excuse political violence. This happened before, with Jim Crow the result. 



  • The Other Pentagon (We Don't Think About)

    by Andrea Mazzarino

    The creation of DHS in the wake of the 9/11 attacks was a profound reorganization of the government that created a prodigiously-funded "security" apparatus that views threats to Americans through the dangerous lens of "insiders" vs. "outsiders". 



  • The End of Democracy won't Look Like You Think It Will

    by Tom Nichols

    The authoritarian right isn't motivated or organized enough to create the kind of dystopia some fear. But federalism means that significant chunks of the Formerly-United States will turn the clock back to the late 1950s. 



  • Now or Never to Stop US Descent to Authoritarian Rule

    by Thomas Zimmer

    The Republican Party has operated on the core propositions that the Democratic opposition and its core constituencies are fundamentally illegitimate long before Donald Trump. Biden's victory shouldn't obscure how close they are to establishing permanent minority rule. 



  • Orban and Putin Don't do Debates Either

    by Ruth Ben-Ghiat

    The news that the Republican National Committee will boycott the Commission on Presidential Debates echoes the actions of authoritarians who reject the principle of political toleration and the very legitimacy of the opposition. 



  • Trump's NPR Interview Shows the Hazard of Giving Him Airtime

    by Federico Finchelstein

    The history of fascism shows that it's a mistake for the news media to treat propagandists as honest actors. They'll exploit the free press to promote their ideas, but crush independent journalism at the first opportunity.



  • Heather Ann Thompson on Mass Incarceration

    Karma Chávez guest hosts a wide-ranging conversation with historian Heather Ann Thompson about policing, mass incarceration, and why overhauling the criminal justice system is the civil rights issue of our time.



  • Tim Snyder: "It Turns Out People Really Like Democracy"

    “America first” and “enemies of the people” are words that are consciously applied by people who wish to destroy democracy. If people don’t know how those words have been applied in the past, then that is dangerous.



  • The Bad Guys are Winning: The 21st Century Reversal of Liberalism

    by Anne Applebaum

    "Nowadays, autocracies are run not by one bad guy, but by sophisticated networks composed of kleptocratic financial structures, security services (military, police, paramilitary groups, surveillance), and professional propagandists."