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Democracy Paradox

Democracy Paradox

Is it possible for a democracy to govern undemocratically? Can the people elect an undemocratic leader? Is it possible for democracy to bring about authoritarianism? And if so, what does this say about democracy? ??My name is Justin Kempf. Every week I talk to the brightest minds on subjects like international relations, political theory, and history to explore democracy from every conceivable angle. Topics like civil resistance, authoritarian successor parties, and the autocratic middle class challenge our ideas about democracy. Join me as we unravel new topics every week.

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Jason Brownlee Believes We Underestimate Democratic Resilience

71% of Americans are concerned about democracy. And apparently that number, roughly 71%, holds for both parties. So, if listeners are concerned about democracy, they can expect that there's someone from the other party who's also concerned about democracy from a different perspective.

Jason Brownlee

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Jason Brownlee is a professor of Government at the University of Texas at Austin. Along with Kenny Miao, he is the author of "Why Democracies Survive" and "A Quiet Consensus" in the Journal of Democracy.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:41Democratic Decline and Resiliency - 3:40National Income or Wealth and Democracy - 13:49Democratic Backsliding - 21:53More than Minimal Democracy - 32:02

Key Links

"Why Democracies Survive" by Jason Brownlee and Kenny Miao in the recent Journal of Democracy

"A Quiet Consensus" by Jason Brownlee and Kenny Miao in the recent Journal of Democracy

Learn more about Jason Brownlee

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Michael Coppedge on Why Democracies Emerge, Why They Decline, and Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem)

Sarah Repucci from Freedom House with an Update on Freedom in the World

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2022-11-01
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Allie Funk of Freedom House Assesses Global Internet Freedom

The Internet's a battle space. I think this year unfortunately we've seen that more than ever with Russia's brazen invasion of Ukraine about how the internet and digital platforms are used to pursue authoritarian ends or to promote democracy and freedom and help people stay safe during armed conflict.

Allie Funk

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Allie Funk is the Research Director for Technology and Democracy at Freedom House. She was deeply involved in this year's Freedom on the Net report and coauthored the executive summary "Countering an Authoritarian Overhaul of the Internet" along with Adrian Shahbaz and Kian Vesteinsson.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:42The Importance of Internet Freedom - 2:42Where Internet Freedom Improved - 6:34Internet Freedom in the China - 18:25Internet Freedom as Transnational - 25:11


Key Links

Freedom on the Net 2022: Countering an Authoritarian Overhaul of the Internet by Adrian Shahbaz, Allie Funk, and Kian Vesteinsson

Learn more about Allie Funk

Follow Allie Funk on Twitter @alfunk


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Sarah Cook on China?s Expanding Global Media Influence

Sarah Repucci from Freedom House with an Update on Freedom in the World

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Democracy Group

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2022-10-25
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Jeremi Suri on America's Unfinished Fight for Democracy

Our democracy is an evolving machine. The machine was built by a small group of people who were all men and looked the same. Over time the strength of American society is that it has grown and become more diverse and become very different. Our democracy has in an inefficient, episodic way been able to adjust and been able to at least account for some of that. But it hasn't done that in about a generation, and it's long time we do that.

Jeremi Suri

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Jeremi Suri is the Mack Brown Distinguished Chair for Leadership in Global Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. He cohosts the podcast This is Democracy with his son Zachary. His latest book is Civil War By Other Means: America?s Long and Unfinished Fight for Democracy.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:50Reconstruction and American Democracy - 3:21Contradictions in American Reconstruction - 15:25How Reconstruction Era Issues Shape Democracy Today - 23:25Democracy and Political Reform - 32:18


Key Links

This is Democracy a podcast from Jeremi and Zachary Suri

Follow Jeremi Suri on Twitter @JeremiSuri


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Lynn Vavreck on the 2020 Election and the Challenge to American Democracy

Can America Preserve Democracy without Retreating from it? Robert C. Lieberman on the Four Threats

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2022-10-18
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Frank Dikötter on the History of China After Mao

This is a party absolutely determined to maintain a monopoly of power and absolutely determined to crush any attempt by any group to suggest that there ought to be anything like separation of powers. No labor unions. No civil society. No freedom of press. No judicial independence. The mere suggestion of it seems to be so offensive that people end up in jail and that?s a constant theme that runs throughout this entire period.

Frank Dikötter

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Frank Dikötter is the author of three books about China under Mao called the People?s Trilogy. He is currently the Chair Professor of Humanities at the University of Hong Kong. His latest book is China After Mao: The Rise of a Superpower.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:52Life in China After Mao - 3:06How much did China Reform After Mao - 13:20What do the Chinese People Want from Reform - 25:38Is Political Reform Necessary for Deeper Economic Reforms - 29:33Why is China's Reform Overstated - 36:18

Key Links

Learn more about Frank Dikötter at Wikipedia

The People's Trilogy by Frank Dikötter

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Sarah Cook on China?s Expanding Global Media Influence

Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way on the Durable Authoritarianism of Revolutionary Regimes

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2022-10-11
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Larry Diamond on Supporting Democracy in the World and at Home

The world can't wait for us to counter Russian and Chinese disinformation, support democratic struggles abroad, help to stabilize and improve democratic institutions, forge partnerships between our democratic organizations and actors and parties and theirs, and otherwise promote democracy around the world. The world can't wait for us to do that.

Larry Diamond

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Larry Diamond is widely considered the leading scholar of democracy. He is a professor at Stanford University and a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution. He was a co-founder of the Journal of Democracy with Marc Plattner in 1990. His influence on the thought and practice of democracy is incalculable. His recent article in Foreign Affairs is titled "All Democracy is Global."

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:49Importance of Democracy - 2:34Strategies to Promote Democracy - 11:30American Policies - 19:59Using Democracy's Strengths - 30:32

Key Links

Ill Winds: Saving Democracy from Russian Rage, Chinese Ambition, and American Complacency by Larry Diamond

Follow Larry Diamond on Twitter @LarryDiamond

Check out Larry Diamond's Greatest Hits at the Journal of Democracy

"All Democracy is Global" by Larry Diamond

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Michael McFaul and Robert Person on Putin, Russia, and the War in Ukraine

Moisés Naím on the New Dynamics of Political Power

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2022-10-04
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Lynn Vavreck on the 2020 Election and the Challenge to American Democracy

The people who win get to enact policy and they get to change the world we live in. But we're at this moment where the candidates who lose, if they think that they don't have to abide by election outcomes, that's very important and that affects the kind of world we live in.

Lynn Vavreck

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Order The Bitter End: The 2020 Presidential Campaign and the Challenge to American Democracy by Chris Tausanovitch, John Sides, and Lynn Vavreck

Lynn Vavreck is the Marvin Hoffenberg Professor of American Politics and Public Policy at UCLA. She?s a contributor for The Upshot at The New York Times. She recently coauthored (with John Sides and Chris Tausanovitch) The Bitter End: The 2020 Presidential Campaign and the Challenge to American Democracy.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:39Lessons from 2016 - 3:05Political Calcification - 14:31Why Did the Democrats Nominate Joe Biden? - 18:51Forecasting the 2020 Election - 25:52Implications for American Democracy - 29:39

Key Links

Follow Lynn Vavreck on Twitter @vavreck

Learn more about Lynn Vavreck

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Robert Lieberman, Kenneth Roberts, and David Bateman on Democratic Resilience and Political Polarization in the United States

Karen Greenberg on the War on Terror, Donald Trump, and American Democracy

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2022-09-27
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Sarah Cook on China's Expanding Global Media Influence

In country after country - we've counted over 130 news outlets of 30 countries that were republishing content that was produced by Chinese state media outlets or the Chinese embassy. So, these state media outlets are actually formally under the control of the Communist Party's propaganda department.

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Sarah Cook is the Research Director for China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan at Freedom House. She also directs their China Media Bulletin and authored the executive summary of this latest report, "Beijing's Global Media Influence 2022: Authoritarian Expansion and the Power of Democratic Resilience."

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:38China and its Media Influence - 2:58Chinese Influence Tactics - 12:48The Effectiveness of Chinese Influence - 18:30Resiliency of Democracies - 27:47

Key Links

Read the report "Beijing's Global Media Influence 2022: Authoritarian Expansion and the Power of Democratic Resilience"

Follow Sarah Cook on Twitter @Sarah_G_Cook

Follow Freedom House on Twitter @freedomhouse

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Aynne Kokas on the Intersection Between Surveillance Capitalism and Chinese Sharp Power (or How Much Does the CCP Already Know About You?)

Sarah Repucci from Freedom House with an Update on Freedom in the World

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2022-09-20
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Constitution Makers on Constitution Making: Hassen Ebrahim on South Africa's Constitution

Back then as a child, when it was normal that we couldn't ride on all buses and sit on all park benches and be allowed to go and watch a movie in a cinema together. Today, our children simply don't know that we had those experiences. But in it lies the wonders of the successes of what we have achieved. And if we managed to change that, then I think we have the ability to change from where we are currently into the future.

Hassen Ebrahim

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Hassen Ebrahim was Executive Director of the Constitutional Assembly of South Africa, and is an advisor on constitution building. He participated in the construction of South Africa's constitution. He is the author of the chapter "Decisions, Deadlocks and Deadlines in Making South Africa?s Constitution" in the forthcoming book Constitution Makers on Constitution Making.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:50Meaning of a Constitution - 2:54Hassen's Political Journey - 10:07Constitutional Process - 20:22Unifying Event - 29:15Areas of Disagreement - 36:48Future of South Africa's Democracy - 46:18

Key Links

Read the Constitution of South Africa

Constitution Makers on Constitution Making: New Cases edited by Tom Ginsburg and Sumit Bisarya

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Joseph Fishkin on the Constitution, American History, and Economic Inequality

Donald Horowitz on the Formation of Democratic Constitutions

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2022-09-19
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Simon Usherwood on Boris Johnson, Liz Truss, and the Nested Games of British Politics

Politics requires complex and ongoing engagement by all of us. There are lots of elements that hang together. The Brexit process has really highlighted that whatever we decide to do that has knock-on consequences and those knock-on consequences have knock-on consequences of their own which might come back and affect our original decision. Everything is connected and we are never going to have something that's going to make everybody happy.

Simon Usherwood

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Simon Usherwood is a Professor of Politics & International Studies at the Open University, Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Surrey's Centre for Britain & Europe and a National Teaching Fellow. Simon coauthored (along with John Pindar) The European Union: A Very Short Introduction. He recently coedited (along with Agnès Alexandre-Collier and Pauline Schnapper) The Nested Games of Brexit.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:48The Rise of Boris Johnson - 3:44Why Boris Johnson Resigned - 16:40What are Nested Games - 23:48Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak - 31:55What Have we Learned about Democracy? 40:23

 Key Links

European Union: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by John Pindar and Simon Usherwood

Learn more about Simon Usherwood

Follow Simon Usherwood on Twitter @Usherwood

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Amory Gethin on Political Cleavages, Inequality, and Party Systems in 50 Democracies

Susan Rose-Ackerman on the Role of the Executive in Four Different Democracies

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2022-09-06
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Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way on the Durable Authoritarianism of Revolutionary Regimes

People like Lenin, Stalin, Mao, they basically lashed out at the entire capitalist world and that lashing out created a counterrevolutionary armed struggle, which in turn contributed to their durability. So, it's that reckless behavior in creating enemies that ultimately led to their creating very strong authoritarian institutions.

Lucan Way

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Preorder Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way's new book Revolution and Dictatorship: The Violent Origins of Durable Authoritarianism here. 

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Lucan Way is a professor of political science at the University of Toronto and Co-Director of the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine. Steven Levitsky is the David Rockefeller Professor of Latin American Studies, professor of government, and director of the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard University. They are also co-chairs of the editorial board at the Journal of Democracy. They are the authors of the forthcoming book Revolution and Dictatorship: The Violent Origins of Durable Authoritarianism.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:45How Recklessness Leads to Authoritarian Durability - 3:17Why Revolutions Abandon Pluralism - 16:53Revolutions and Institution Building - 22:05Why does Durable Authoritarianism Fail - 29:31Is the Era of Revolutions Over - 38:01

Key Links

Revolution and Dictatorship: The Violent Origins of Durable Authoritarianism by Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way

Competitive Authoritarianism: Hybrid Regimes after the Cold War by Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way

"The Durability of Revolutionary Regimes" by Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way in the Journal of Democracy

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Lucan Way on Ukraine. Democracy in Hard Places.

Mark Beissinger on Urban Civic Revolutions

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2022-08-30
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Laura Gamboa on Opposition Strategies to Resist Democratic Erosion

There's always another set of elections. So, let's set up for elections. Let's figure out how to mobilize people. Let's figure out how to engage them and answer the question, ?Why they elected this person? What did we miss? What do we need to build? Which kind of program.? I think using the streets is great, but definitely you need training? A lot of training.This is a long-term effort. It's not about calling you on Facebook for a demonstration and that's it.

Laura Gamboa

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Preorder Laura Gamboa's new book Resisting Backsliding: Opposition Strategies against the Erosion of Democracy here. 

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Laura Gamboa is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Utah. She is the author of the forthcoming book Resisting Backsliding: Opposition Strategies against the Erosion of Democracy.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:47Uribe was a Threat to Democracy - 3:11Opposition Strategies in Colombia - 14:20Opposition Strategies in Venezuela - 17:53How Often do Aspiring Autocrats Get Elected - 27:03Final Advice for Democratic Oppositions - 34:02


Key Links

Learn more about Laura Gamboa

"The Peace Process and Colombia?s Elections" by Laura Gambia in the Journal of Democracy

Resisting Backsliding: Opposition Strategies against the Erosion of Democracy by Laura Gamboa


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Kim Lane Scheppele on Hungary, Viktor Orbán, and its Democratic Decline

Caitlin Andrews-Lee on Charismatic Movements and Personalistic Leaders

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2022-08-23
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Kim Lane Scheppele on Hungary, Viktor Orbán, and its Democratic Decline

So, I came back from that trip and said to one of my good friends back in Budapest, ?I think I've met the most dangerous person I've ever met personally.? And she said, ?Oh Viktor, he's nothing. He's like a kid. He's in his thirties.? I mean, he was an aspiring politician at this point. His party was at the bottom of the polls. It didn't look like he had any future. And I said, ?No, this guy has something. It's hard to define what it is, but we're going to be hearing from him.?

Kim Lane Scheppele

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Kim Lane Scheppele is the Laurance S. Rockefeller Professor of Sociology and International Affairs and the University Center for Human Values at Princeton University.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:50Kim Lane Scheppele meets Viktor Orbán - 2:45Viktor Orbán as Prime Minister 1998-2002 - 9:21Hungary Changes its Constitution 15:56Orbán Undermines Democracy Legally - 26:32Why do Voters Support Orbán and Fidesz - 41:48

Key Links

Learn more about Kim Lane Scheppele

"How Viktor Orbán Wins" by Kim Lane Scheppele in the Journal of Democracy

9/11 and the Rise of Global Anti-Terrorism Law: How the UN Security Council Rules the World edited by Kim Lane Scheppele and Arianna Vedaschi

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Moisés Naím on the New Dynamics of Political Power

Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman on Democratic Backsliding

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2022-08-16
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Jessica Pisano on How Zelenskyy Changed Ukraine

There were lots of opportunities for a certain part of Ukrainian society to encounter Zelenskyy and to feel that they knew him. He was not an unknown quantity when he ran for president. So, I think that's important for us to keep in mind. I would say the so-called Western World is still discovering who he is, but his loyalty, his integrity, his ideas or his group's ideas about Ukrainian political nationhood have been in the works for a long time.

Jessica Pisano

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Jessica Pisano is Associate Professor in the Department of Politics at the New School for Social Research. She is the author of "How Zelensky Changed Ukraine" in the Journal of Democracy and Staging Democracy: Political Performance in Ukraine, Russia, and Beyond.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:49Early Career of Zelenskyy - 2:58What is Political Theater? - 10:30Zelenskyy Changes Politics in Ukraine - 17:26Zelenskyy as President - 22:43Future of Ukraine - 30:41


Key Links

Learn more about Jessica Pisano

"How Zelensky Changed Ukraine" by Jessica Pisano in the Journal of Democracy

Staging Democracy: Political Performance in Ukraine, Russia, and Beyond by Jessica Pisano


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Michael McFaul and Robert Person on Putin, Russia, and the War in Ukraine

Lucan Way on Ukraine. Democracy in Hard Places.

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2022-08-09
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Neil DeVotta on the Protests in Sri Lanka

As long as people are able to cast their ballot, irrespective of the illiberalism, irrespective of all these other shortcomings, democracy, at least from a voting standpoint, has the capacity to surprise.

Neil Devotta

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Neil DeVotta is professor of politics and international affairs at Wake Forest University. His article "Sri Lanka's Agony" was published in this July's issue of Journal of Democracy.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:38Overview of the Protests - 3:15Protests After the Rajapaksas - 15:16Background on the Rajapaksas - 24:58Sri Lanka and Democracy - 30:31Future of Sri Lanka - 34:11


Key Links

Learn more about Neil DeVotta

"Sri Lanka's Agony" by Neil DeVotta in the Journal of Democracy

"Sri Lanka: The Return to Ethnocracy" by Neil DeVotta in the Journal of Democracy


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Ashutosh Varshney on India. Democracy in Hard Places

Mark Beissinger on Urban Civic Revolutions

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2022-08-02
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Aynne Kokas on the Intersection Between Surveillance Capitalism and Chinese Sharp Power (or How Much Does the CCP Already Know About You?)

The US consumer system is uniquely exploitative. US consumers are exploited by American companies, by French companies, by German companies, by Chinese companies, because there aren't laws protecting consumer data privacy that extend widely across the US consumer ecosystem. The main difference with Chinese companies is that the Chinese government has established an entire framework that pressures Chinese firms to share their data with Chinese government regulators.

Aynne Kokas

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Aynne Kokas is an associate professor of media studies and the C.K. Yen Chair at the University of Virginia?s Miller Center. Her most recent book is Trafficking Data: How China Is Winning the Battle for Digital Sovereignty. Her article "How Beijing Runs the Show in Hollywood" was published in this April's issue of Journal of Democracy.

Key Highlights

Introduction - 0:50Video Games as Social Media - 3:02Chinese Brands in the US Tech Market - 11:34Party Control of China's Tech Industry - 19:40America's Lack of Tech Regulations - 28:36The Big Picture - 37:03


Key Links

Learn more about Aynne Kokas

Trafficking Data: How China Is Winning the Battle for Digital Sovereignty by Aynne Kokas

"How Beijing Runs the Show in Hollywood" by Aynne Kokas in the Journal of Democracy

Visit the Miller Center at the University of Virginia


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Ronald Deibert from Citizen Lab on Cyber Surveillance, Digital Subversion, and Transnational Repression

Mareike Ohlberg on the Global Influence of the Chinese Communist Party

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2022-07-26
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Michael McFaul and Robert Person on Putin, Russia, and the War in Ukraine

There are a lot of people quietly who are deeply frustrated with this war. Every rich person in Russia with one or two exceptions are frustrated with this war. I think many of the so-called liberal technocratic elites in the government are frustrated with this war. Lots of regional leaders are frustrated with this war. It's not just the vocal opposition. I think there's a quiet minority and maybe even majority that is exhausted with what Putin has done.

Michael McFaul

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Michael McFaul, former U.S. ambassador to Russia, is professor of political science at Stanford University, director of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, and Peter and Helen Bing Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution. His most recent book is From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin?s Russia (2018). Robert Person is associate professor of international relations at the U.S. Military Academy, director of its international affairs curriculum, and faculty affiliate at its Modern War Institute. Their essay "What Putin Fears Most" was published as an online exclusive from the Journal of Democracy in February and was included in the April 2022 issue.

Key Highlights

Introduction 0:48Personal Account from Michael McFaul 3:16Putin's Objectives 7:44What would Russia be like without Putin? 12:22Challenges for democracy in Ukraine 20:10Effectiveness of sanctions 24:15Where is the Russian Revolution going? 27:11


Key Links

Learn more about Michael McFaul

"What Putin Fears Most" by Robert Person and Michael McFaul in the Journal of Democracy

From Cold War To Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin's Russia by Michael McFaul

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Kathryn Stoner on How Putin?s War has Ruined Russia

Marta Dyczok and Andriy Kulokov on the Media, Information Warriors, and the Future of Ukraine

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2022-07-19
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Scott Mainwaring on Argentina and a Final Reflection on Democracy in Hard Places

I think they're really important. But I don't think that they are a complete safeguard. Certainly, when you create democracies in hard places, you want to think very carefully about what institutions you want in place and how you strengthen them. But if you get illiberal governing parties in democracies in hard places, they can run over institutions.

Scott Mainwaring

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Scott Mainwaring is the Eugene P. and Helen Conley Professor of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame. He is also a faculty fellow at the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, where he previously served as director for 13 years and is a current Advisory Board member. He is the coeditor (with Tarek Masoud) of Democracy in Hard Places.

Key Highlights

Introduction 0:47Why is Argentina a hard place for democracy? 2:35Are democracies in hard places the exception or the norm? 9:19Is Peronism a threat to democracy? 12:01How can democracies strengthen institutions? 19:32What role do citizens play? 33:27


Key Links

Learn more about Scott Mainwaring

"The Fates Of Third-Wave Democracies" by Scott Mainwaring and Fernando Bizarro in the Journal of Democracy

Democracy in Hard Places edited by Scott Mainwaring and Tarek Masoud


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Lucan Way on Ukraine. Democracy in Hard Places.

Rachel Beatty Riedl on Benin. Democracy in Hard Places.

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2022-07-12
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Lucan Way on Ukraine. Democracy in Hard Places

The war is never going to really end. Because even in the most optimistic scenario where Ukraine regains its territory and it goes back to the 1991 borders, Russia is almost certainly going to present a permanent threat to Ukrainian sovereignty. I think objectively it will. But even if objectively it wasn?t, after such an invasion, you can imagine the political environment's going to treat it as one.

Lucan Way

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Lucan Way is a Professor of Political Science at the University of Toronto. He coauthored (along with Steven Levitsky) Competitive Authoritarianism: Hybrid Regimes After the Cold War. He has a new book also coauthored with Steven Levitsky due this fall called Revolution and Dictatorship: The Violent Origins of Durable Authoritarianism. He is the author of the chapter "Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine: Democratic Moments in the Former Soviet Union" in the book Democracy in Hard Places.

Key Highlights

What makes Zelensky such a special leader?Why wasn't Ukraine considered more democratic before Russia's invasion?How has the war impacted democracy in Ukraine?What role did Ukraine's ethnic pluralism contribute to democratization?What challenges will Ukrainian democracy face after its war with Russia?


Key Links

Revolution and Dictatorship: The Violent Origins of Durable Authoritarianism by Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way

Follow the Lucan Way on Twitter @LucanWay

"The Rebirth of the Liberal World Order?" by Lucan Way in the Journal of Democracy

Democracy in Hard Places edited by Scott Mainwaring and Tarek Masoud


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Sarah Repucci from Freedom House with an Update on Freedom in the World

Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman on Democratic Backsliding

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2022-07-05
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Michael Coppedge on Why Democracies Emerge, Why They Decline, and Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem)

Democracy is a complex concept. It has to do with elections. It has to do with legislatures. It has to do with civil society organizations and courts and political styles of politicians. There's a lot packed into the concept and it's multidimensional, because some of these components don't move together.

Michael Coppedge

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Michael Coppedge is a Professor of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame, a principal investigator of the Varieties of Democracy project, and a faculty fellow at the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. He is a coeditor (along with Amanda Edgell, Carl Henrik Knutsen, and Staffan Lindberg) of Why Democracies Develop and Decline.

Key Highlights

Democracy as a multidimensional conceptHow the conditions for democratization differ from those for backslidingWays researchers use information from V-Dem to discover new insights about democracyNew findings from V-Dem research regarding presidentialism, party system institutionalization, and anti-system partiesHow has V-Dem changed research about democracy


Key Links

Learn more about the Varieties of Democracy Project

Follow the V-Dem Institute on Twitter @vdeminstitute

Why Democracies Develop and Decline edited by Michael Coppedge, Amanda B. Edgell, Carl Henrik Knutsen and Staffan I. Lindberg


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Sarah Repucci from Freedom House with an Update on Freedom in the World

Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman on Democratic Backsliding

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Democracy Group

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2022-06-28
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Rachel Beatty Riedl on Benin. Democracy in Hard Places.

So, at some level, a belief in democracy was necessary in Benin as in elsewhere. Support for it - Absolutely. But what's interesting in the Benin case is that you were lacking that level of political elite leadership that were committed democratic ideologues.

Rachel Beatty Riedl

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Rachel Beatty Riedl is the John S. Knight Professor of International Studies, Director of the Einaudi Center for International Studies, and professor in the Department of Government at Cornell University. She also cohosts the podcast Ufahamu Africa with Kim Yi Dionne. Her chapter "Africa?s Democratic Outliers Success amid Challenges in Benin and South Africa" appears in the forthcoming book Democracy in Hard Places.

Key Highlights

Details the story of Benin's democratizationHow Benin has used consensus to governWhat makes Benin a democracy in a hard placeAn overview of the current President Patrice TalonCurrent threats to democracy in Benin


Key Links

Learn more about the Einaudi Center for International Studies

Listen to the Ufahamu Podcast

Follow Rachel Beatty Riedl on Twitter @BeattyRiedl

Democracy in Hard Places edited by Scott Mainwaring and Tarek Masoud


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Evan Lieberman on South Africa

Christophe Jaffrelot on Narendra Modi and Hindu Nationalism

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2022-06-21
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Ashutosh Varshney on India. Democracy in Hard Places

Nehru is asked several times in those early years, ?Aren?t you doing something which has never been done before? You are 17% literate. Half of your country is below the poverty line. Under such conditions no democracy has ever stabilize itself and perhaps has not emerged.? And his argument repeatedly is that we shouldn't be constrained by the history of the West.

Ashutosh Varshney

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Ashutosh Varshney is the Sol Goldman Professor of International Studies and the Social Sciences and Professor of Political Science at Brown University, where he also directs the Center for Contemporary South Asia. His chapter "India?s Democratic Longevity and Its Troubled Trajectory" appears in the forthcoming book Democracy in Hard Places.

Key Highlights

How India defied early theories of democratizationThe role of leadership in India's early democracyWhy India returned to democracy after Indira Gandhi's emergency?The eerie similarities between India's recent treatment of Muslims and the rise of the Jim Crow era in the American SouthWhen will democratic backsliding in India become a democratic collapse


Key Links

"Modi Consolidates Power: Electoral Vibrancy, Mounting Liberal Deficits" by Ashutosh Varshney in Journal of Democracy

Learn more about Ashutosh Varshney at www.ashutoshvarshney.net

Follow Ashutosh Varshney on Twitter @ProfVarshney

Democracy in Hard Places edited by Scott Mainwaring and Tarek Masoud


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Dan Slater on Indonesia

Christophe Jaffrelot on Narendra Modi and Hindu Nationalism

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2022-06-14
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Evan Lieberman on South Africa. Democracy in Hard Places

When you hear people talk in such disparaging tones, that everything is broken, that nothing is possible, you need to ask yourself, is that right? When you look around, the answer is no. There are these examples where things do go right, where people work together and create a neighborhood or a community for themselves in which they can be prosperous and build better lives. And that's really what the democratic project is all about.

Evan Lieberman

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A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Evan Lieberman is a Professor of Political Science and Contemporary Africa at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Director of the MIT Global Diversity Lab, and the faculty director of the MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives (MISTI). He is the coauthor with Rorisang Lekalake of the recent article "South Africa's Resilient Democracy" in the Journal of Democracy and author of the forthcoming book Until We Have Won Our Liberty: South Africa after Apartheid.

Key Highlights

Why is Evan Lieberman optimistic about democracy in South AfricaRole of Nelson Mandela on South Africa's democracyImportance of South Africa for democracy in the worldAccount of the housing community EthembalethuWhat the 2019 election says about democracy in South Africa


Key Links

Until We Have Won Our Liberty: South Africa after Apartheid by Evan Lieberman

"South Africa?s Resilient Democracy" by Evan Lieberman and Rorisang Lekalake in Journal of Democracy

Learn more about Evan Lieberman at www.evanlieberman.org

Follow Evan Lieberman on Twitter @evlieb

Democracy in Hard Places edited by Scott Mainwaring and Tarek Masoud


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Dan Slater on Indonesia

Nic Cheeseman and Gabrielle Lynch on the Moral Economy of Elections in Africa

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2022-06-07
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Dan Slater on Indonesia. Democracy in Hard Places

This might sound like a cliche, but in Indonesia it's really, really true. My hope rests in the Indonesian people and the voters. I mean, the voters, they show up. The voters have been the ones to defend democracy. They've been the ones to reject the most anti-pluralistic candidates, not all Indonesian voters, but a slim majority. They've been managing to do it.

Dan Slater

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Dan Slater is the Weiser Professor of Emerging Democracies in the Department of Political Science and director of the Weiser Center for Emerging Democracies at the University of Michigan. Dan is also the coauthor of the forthcoming book From Development to Democracy: The Transformations of Modern Asia with Joseph Wong.

Key Highlights

A brief account of how Indonesia democratizedWhat is democratization through strengthHow elites held onto power after democratizationWhat makes Indonesia a hard place for democracyThe current state of Indonesia's democracy


Key Links

From Development to Democracy: The Transformations of Modern Asia by Dan Slater and Joseph Wong

Democracy in Hard Places edited by Scott Mainwaring and Tarek Masoud

Follow Dan Slater on Twitter @SlaterPolitics


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Donald Horowitz on the Formation of Democratic Constitutions

Sebastian Strangio Explains the Relationship Between China and Southeast Asia

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2022-05-31
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Kathryn Stoner on How Putin's War has Ruined Russia

Boeing is pulling out, DuPont, Erickson, Analog Devices, Bombardier. Eventually all of these things are going to cause supply and production chain issues and unemployment in Russia. So, Mr. Putin doesn't have an infinite amount of time before havoc is wrought.

Kathryn Stoner

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information. 

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Kathryn Stoner is the Mosbacher Director at the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law, a professor of political science at Stanford University, and a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. She is also the author of the book Russia Resurrected: Its Power and Purpose in a New Global Order. Her article ?How Putin?s War Has Ruined Russia? was recently published online at journalofdemocracy.org.

Key Highlights

How has Russia's invasion of Ukraine affected perceptions of Russia's militaryHow has it affected its economy both short-term and long-termHow has it affected Russia's international standingThe affects on Russia's citizensWhat does Putin's unpredictability mean for peace in Ukraine


Key Links

"How Putin?s War in Ukraine Has Ruined Russia" by Kathryn Stoner in Journal of Democracy

Russia Resurrected: Its Power and Purpose in a New Global Order by Kathryn Stoner

Follow Kathryn Stoner on Twitter @kath_stoner


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Moisés Naím on the New Dynamics of Political Power

Kathryn Stoner on Russia?s Economy, Politics, and Foreign Policy

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2022-05-24
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Scott Radnitz on Why Conspiracy Theories Thrive in Both Democracies and Autocracies

There's something natural and organic about perceiving that the people in power are out to advance their own interests. It's in part because it?s often true. Governments actually do keep secrets from the public. Politicians engage in scandals. There often is corruption at high levels. So, we don't want citizens in a democracy to be too trusting of their politicians. It's healthy to be skeptical of the state and its real abuses and tendencies towards secrecy. The danger is when this distrust gets redirected, not toward the state, but targets innocent people who are not actually responsible for people's problems.

Scott Radnitz

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

*Please note during the interview the host says "conspiracy" rather than "conspiracy theory." The transcript has been corrected.*

Scott Radnitz is an associate professor of Russian and Eurasian Studies at the University of Washington and the director of the Ellison Center for Russian, Eastern European, and Central Asian Studies. He is the author of Revealing Schemes: The Politics of Conspiracy in Russia and the Post-Soviet Region and coeditor with Harris Mylonas of the forthcoming book Enemies Within: The Global Politics of Fifth Columns. His article ?Why Democracy Fuels Conspiracy Theories? was recently published in the Journal of Democracy.

Key Highlights

Conspiracy theories Russia uses to justify their invasion of UkraineWhy Russia relies on conspiracy theories in its political rhetoricThe use of conspiracy theories in democracies and autocraciesThe recent proliferation of conspiracy theories in the United StatesHow to mitigate the harmful effects of conspiracy theories in politics


Key Links

"Why Democracy Fuels Conspiracy Theories" by Scott Radnitz in Journal of Democracy

Revealing Schemes: The Politics of Conspiracy in Russia and the Post-Soviet Region by Scott Radnitz

Enemies Within: The Global Politics of Fifth Columns edited by Harris Mylonas and Scott Radnitz


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Ronald Deibert from Citizen Lab on Cyber Surveillance, Digital Subversion, and Transnational Repression

Moisés Naím on the New Dynamics of Political Power

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2022-05-17
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Dan Banik is In Pursuit of Development

This bonus episode is part of a series of interviews available for monthly supporters of Democracy Paradox at Patreon. Other interviews feature guests like Julia Azari, Mila Atmos, and Bob Shrum. But more importantly you'll help the podcast cover important expenses and continue to grow. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter by clicking on the link here.

If you want to help the podcast in other ways, please email the host, Justin Kempf, at [email protected].

Dan Banik is a professor of political science at the University of Oslo and Director of the Oslo SDG Initiative. He also hosts the podcast In Pursuit of Development. His podcast is among the most insightful on topics of democracy, modernization, and sustainability. Past guests have included Francis Fukuyama and Daron Acemoglu. But it's Dan's ability to help listeners understand complex ideas and subjects that sets his podcast apart.

In Pursuit of Development 

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Follow Dan on Twitter @danbanik 

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2022-05-13
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Ronald Deibert from Citizen Lab on Cyber Surveillance, Digital Subversion, and Transnational Repression

So, if your aim is to get inside someone's device without their permission and gather up information, you could do that using a very sophisticated commercial spyware technology like Pegasus. The latest iteration of it employs zero click technology meaning that it can target and insert itself on any device without the owner of that device even knowing or being tricked into clicking on a link. That's very powerful, because there is no defense against it.

Ronald Deibert

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Ronald Deibert is a professor of political science at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto and the Director of the Citizen Lab. He recently gave the 18th annual Seymour Martin Lipset Lecture at the National Endowment for Democracy. Its title was ?Digital Subversion: The Threat to Democracy.? His article, ?Subversion Inc: The Age of Private Espionage? in the most recent Journal of Democracy is based on this lecture.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information. 

Key Highlights

How Black Cube tried to infiltrate Citizen LabHow autocrats continue to repress political dissidents overseasThe privatization of espionage and spycraftThe link between surveillance capitalism and private espionageWhat liberal democracies can do to defend civil society


Key Links

Citizen Lab

Seymour Martin Lipset Lecture "Digital Subversion: The Threat to Democracy" by Ronald Deibert

"Subversion Inc: The Age of Private Espionage" by Ronald Deibert in Journal of Democracy

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Can Democracy Survive the Internet? Nate Persily and Josh Tucker on Social Media and Democracy

Winston Mano on Social Media and Politics in Africa? And what America can Learn from Africa about Democracy

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2022-05-10
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Thomas Piketty on Equality

Pure economic factors or technological factors or the level of economic development or level of technological development cannot explain the diversity of levels of inequality and structure of inequality that we observe throughout history.

Thomas Piketty

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Thomas Piketty is Professor at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and the Paris School of Economics and Codirector of the World Inequality Lab. He is also the author of A Brief History of Equality.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

Key Highlights

The Case for Reparations for HaitiAn Account of the Historical Movement Toward Greater EqualityEconomic Inequality as a Political ConstructionShould Economic Equality be the Goal of the State?Is Thomas Piketty Optimistic for the Future?


Key Links

A Brief History of Equality by Thomas Piketty

Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty

Follow Thomas Piketty on Twitter @PikettyLeMonde


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Joseph Fishkin on the Constitution, American History, and Economic Inequality

Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson on the Plutocratic Populism of the Republican Party

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2022-05-03
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Marta Dyczok and Andriy Kulykov on the Media, Information Warriors, and the Future of Ukraine

I heard a verified story of a person who made his way with his family from an occupied town listening to our broadcast, because we were telling them where it was dangerous for them to go and where it was more or less safe to go. So, radio actually saves lives. I probably cannot save lives otherwise. But I can with the help of radio.

Andriy Kulykov

Recorded on April 19th, 2022.

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Marta Dyczok is an Associate Professor at the Departments of History and Political Science, Western University, Canada. She was the host of the podcast Ukraine Calling. Andriy Kulykov is co-founder and Chairperson of Hromadske Radio.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

Key Highlights

A Short History of Hromadske RadioDo Journalists in Ukraine Consider Themselves Information WarriorsThe Importance of Media Literacy in a WarHow Radio Can Saved Lives in UkraineAndriy's Thoughts on Ukrainian Identity


Key Links

Ukraine Calling: A Kaleidoscope from Hromadske Radio 2016?2019 edited by Marta Dyczok

Listen to the Ukraine Calling Podcast

Learn more about Hromadske Radio


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Between Russia and China: Anja Mihr on Central Asia

Joshua Yaffa on Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin?s Russia

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2022-04-26
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Yascha Mounk on the Great Experiment of Diverse Democracies

So, there's actually something about the basic mechanism of democracy that does make it harder to sustain diversity. In other ways, the principles of liberal democracy are the right solution. And so, obviously my vision for the future is that of a diverse democracy. But we shouldn't be at ease about the ways in which democracy can sometimes inflame ethnic and religious tensions as well.

Yascha Mounk

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Yascha Mounk is a Professor of the Practice of International Affairs at Johns Hopkins University and the founder of Persuasion. Mounk is also a contributing editor at The Atlantic and a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He is the author of The Great Experiment: Why Diverse Democracies Fall Apart and How They Can Endure.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information. 

Key Highlights

Is a diverse democracy more democraticChallenges for diverse democraciesYascha's vision for diverse societiesThe most dangerous idea in American PoliticsIs it more difficult for diverse ideas to flourish?


Key Links

The Great Experiment: Why Diverse Democracies Fall Apart and How They Can Endure by Yascha  Mounk

Read more from Yascha Mounk at Persuassion

Follow Yascha Mounk @Yascha_Mounk


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Elisabeth Ivarsflaten and Paul Sniderman on Inclusion and Respect of Muslim Minorities

Sara Wallace Goodman on Citizen Responses to Democratic Threats

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2022-04-19
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Mark Beissinger on Contemporary Urban Civic Revolutions

I think the revolutionary process has become somewhat less consequential in some ways. The ability to bring about substantive change in the wake of revolution has deteriorated for one thing. We've gained certain things as well. I mean, revolutions are no longer as violent as they once were. They're more frequent than they once were, almost more normal in terms of being part of the political landscape in a way that they were not in the past.

Mark Beissinger

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Mark Beissinger is a professor of politics at Princeton University and the author of the new book The Revolutionary City: Urbanization and the Global Transformation of Rebellion.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

Key Highlights

An Account of the Orange Revolution in UkraineDescription of Urban Civic RevolutionsWhy are Revolutions more Successful than in the Past?Why are Revolutions Less Violent?How do Revolutions Continue to Change?


Key Links

The Revolutionary City: Urbanization and the Global Transformation of Rebellion by Mark Beissinger

Learn more about Mark Beissinger at Princeton University

Learn more about Mark Beissinger at Wikipedia

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Erica Chenoweth on Civil Resistance

George Lawson on Revolution

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2022-04-12
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Craig Whitlock on the Lessons Learned in Afghanistan

It's still shocking to me to read a lot of these documents and interviews in, The Afghanistan Papers, things that most people would think are obvious. What's the plan to end the war? What benchmarks do we have to achieve so that we know we can leave? You know, none of those things were thought out or articulated.

Craig Whitlock

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.

Craig Whitlock is an investigative reporter at The Washington Post and the author of The Afghanistan Papers: A Secret History of the War.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information. 

Key Highlights

When did the War in Afghanistan Go WrongThe Lies and Deception in Communications on the WarDifferences in the Approach to the War Between Bush and ObamaFailures to Provide a Long-Term Political SolutionLessons for Involvement in Ukraine and Beyond

 
Key Links

The Afghanistan Papers: A Secret History of the War by Craig Whitlock

Afghanistan Papers Document Database at The Washington Post

"At War With Truth" by Craig Whitlock

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili and Ilia Murtazashvili on Afghanistan, Local Institutions, and Self-Governance

Karen Greenberg on the War on Terror, Donald Trump, and American Democracy

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2022-04-05
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Miles Rapoport on How We Can Achieve Universal Voting

I have worked on voting issues for 35 years, for same-day registration and for opening up the process to younger people and preregistration, and, you know, nevertheless 35 years later we're still at 60 and 65%. 2020 was the highest turnout election ever and it was at 66%. So, I started to think what is it that could really, really move the needle and change the game.

Miles Rapoport

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of 100% Democracy: The Case for Universal Voting  here.

Miles Rapoport is also the Senior Practice Fellow in American Democracy at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the Harvard Kennedy School. He formerly served as secretary of the state of Connecticut.  He is the coauthor of the book 100% Democracy: The Case for Universal Voting with E.J. Dionne.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

Key Highlights

What is Civic Duty Voting?Why Should We Require Citizens to Vote?Is Voting a Right or a Duty?Australia's System of Civic Duty VotingHow Would it Change How Citizens Think About Themselves?


Key Links

100% Democracy: The Case for Universal Voting by Miles Rapoport and E.J. Dionne

Learn about Miles Rapoport at Harvard University

Lift Every Voice: The Urgency of Universal Civic Duty Voting 

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Shari Davis Elevates Participatory Budgeting

Lee Drutman Makes the Case for Multiparty Democracy in America

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2022-03-29
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Between Russia and China: Anja Mihr on Central Asia

Russia... will lose ground here in the region over the next decade and China will fill it, because the Europeans are not doing it. The United States is not doing it. Iran is not doing it and Turkey cannot do it either.

Anja Mihr

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Between Peace and Conflict in the East and the West Studies on Transformation and Development in the OSCE Region  here.

Anja Mihr is an associate professor of Political Science at the OSCE Academy at Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan and the founder and program director of the Center on Governance through Human Rights at the HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA Governance Platform (gGmbH) in Berlin. Recently, she edited the volume Between Peace and Conflict in the East and the West Studies on Transformation and Development in the OSCE Region.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information. 

Key Highlights

How do Central Asian countries feel about Russia's invasion of Ukraine?Differences and similarities between Central Asian nationsWhy has China become so influential in the region?Sadyr Japarov and his rise to powerWhat is Glocalism?


Key Links

Between Peace and Conflict in the East and the West: Studies on Transformation and Development in the OSCE Region  edited by Anja Mihr

Learn more about Anja Mihr

Follow Anja Mihr on Twitter @AnjaMihr

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili and Ilia Murtazashvili on Afghanistan, Local Institutions, and Self-Governance

Timothy Frye Says Putin is a Weak Strongman

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2022-03-22
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Moisés Naím on the New Dynamics of Political Power

But what we have now is something that has not been sufficiently discussed, sufficiently understood, which is a criminalized state of which Russia is an example, in the Balkans we have some examples, in Latin America Venezuela stands out as an example. And that is essentially that the state becomes an organized criminal organization. An organization that essentially uses the structure, strategies, tactics, modalities of organized crime.

Moisés Naím

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of The Revenge of Power: How Autocrats Are Reinventing Politics for the 21st Century  here.

Moisés Naím is a scholar at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and an internationally syndicated columnist. He served as editor in chief of Foreign Policy, as Venezuela's trade minister, and as executive director of the World Bank. He is the author of The End of Power: From Boardrooms to Battlefields and Churches to States, Why Being In Charge Isn't What It Used to Be and most recently, The Revenge of Power: How Autocrats Are Reinventing Politics for the 21st Century.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information. 

Key Highlights

How 3P Autocrats Use Polarization, Populism, and Post-Truth to Consolidate PowerWhy Do People Elect AutocratsNaím's Personal Evolution in his Ideas on PowerThe Rise of the Criminal StateNaím discusses Putin, Russia, and the War in Ukraine


Key Links

The Revenge of Power: How Autocrats Are Reinventing Politics for the 21st Century by Moisés Naím

Learn more about Moisés Naím

Follow Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili on Twitter @MoisesNaim


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Sarah Repucci from Freedom House with an Update on Freedom in the World

Caitlin Andrews-Lee on Charismatic Movements and Personalistic Leaders

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2022-03-15
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Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili and Ilia Murtazashvili on Afghanistan, Local Institutions, and Self-Governance

It wasn't because Afghan social norms don?t support democracy. They do. And Afghans understood darn well what they were supposed to have. But they never even got the minimum of what they were promised in the constitution.

Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Land, the State, and War: Property Institutions and Political Order in Afghanistan  here.

Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili and Ilia Murtazashvili are associate professors at the University of Pittsburgh and the authors of the recent book Land, the State, and War: Property Institutions and Political Order in Afghanistan. Jen is also the founding director and Ilia is an associate director of the Center for Governance and Markets.

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

Key Highlights

Description of the role of shuras, maliks, and mullahs in local governanceHow property rights help explain local governanceWhy has the state always been ineffective in AfghanistanA little history on AfghanistanAre local, self-governing institutions in Afghanistan democratic?


Key Links

Land, the State, and War: Property Institutions and Political Order in Afghanistan by Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili and Ilia Murtazashvili

Learn more about the Center for Governance and Markets

Follow Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili on Twitter @jmurtazashvili

Follow Ilia Murtazashvili on Twitter @IMurtazashvili


Democracy Paradox Podcast

David Stasavage on Early Democracy and its Decline

Donald F. Kettl on Federalism

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2022-03-08
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Sarah Repucci from Freedom House with an Update on Freedom in the World

You can't protect basic human rights if you don't have democracy. If you're going to protect basic human rights, you need to have things like credible institutions that hold abusers to account. You need to have opportunities for the least advantaged in a society. The people whose rights are most at risk to be able to choose their leaders and choose leaders who will represent them and serve their interests. You need leaders that serve for the common good, not for their own personal gain.

Sarah Repucci

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Freedom in the World 2022: The Global Expansion of Authoritarian Rule  here.

Sarah Repucci is the Vice President of Research and Analysis at Freedom House. She coauthored (along with Amy Slipowitz) Freedom in the World 2022: The Global Expansion of Authoritarian Rule.

Key Highlights

Global freedom has declined for 16 consecutive yearsHow Russia's invasion of Ukraine is part of a broader expansion of authoritarianismMyanmar and other countries with major declines in freedomBright spots like Ecuador and PeruHow we can support democracy in the world


Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information. 


Key Links

Freedom in the World 2022: The Global Expansion of Authoritarian Rule by Sarah Repucci and Amy Slipowitz

Learn more about Freedom House

Follow Freedom House on Twitter @freedomhouse


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Freedom House: Sarah Repucci Assesses Freedom in the World

Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman on Democratic Backsliding

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2022-03-01
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Elisabeth Ivarsflaten and Paul Sniderman on the Inclusion and Respect of Muslim Minorities

If you're actually a real person and you're living your life and you're going into stores and you're riding on a bus or your kids are going to school, what matters is that you be treated with respect. That you have a dignity. And that, I think, at every point that matters most to us is what the book has wound up being about. It?s an essay on respect as a condition of a liberal democracy.

Paul Sniderman

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of The Struggle for Inclusion: Muslim Minorities and the Democratic Ethos  here.

Elisabeth Ivarsflaten is a professor of political science and scientific director of the Digital Social Science Core Facility at the University of Bergen, Norway. Paul Sniderman is the Fairleigh S. Dickinson Jr., Professor of Public Policy at Stanford University. They are the authors of The Struggle for Inclusion: Muslim Minorities and the Democratic Ethos.

Key Highlights

Western societies show greater openness towards Muslim immigrants than previously recognizedWhere are there opportunities for real inclusion for Muslim immigrantsHow innovative research designs led to unexpected resultsThe difference between recognition respect and appraisal respectThe limits to inclusion for liberal societies that remain today


Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for bonus episodes and exclusive updates and information.

Key Links

The Struggle for Inclusion: Muslim Minorities and the Democratic Ethos by Elisabeth Ivarsflaten and Paul Sniderman

Learn more about the Digital Social Science Core Facility including The Norwegian Citizen Panel

Learn more about Paul Sniderman


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Sara Wallace Goodman on Citizen Responses to Democratic Threats

Mike Hoffman on How Religious Identities Influence Support for or Opposition to Democracy

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2022-02-22
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Debasish Roy Chowdhury and John Keane on the Decline of Indian Democracy

You treat votes as equal. My vote is equal to your vote. But the state treats our bodies as unequal. That logically makes no sense and it is farcical to call it a democracy in the first place. Forget what implications this will have for democracy in the long-term, but to be called a democracy and to have your bodies treated differently is a farce in itself.

Debasish Roy Chowdhury

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of To Kill a Democracy: India's Passage to Despotism  here.

Deb Chowdhry is a journalist who has published in Time, South China Morning Post, and Washington Times. John Keane is a Professor of Politics at the University of Sydney. They are the authors of the recent book To Kill a Democracy: India's Passage to Despotism.

Key Highlights

Who is Mamata Banerjee?How does political violence undermine democracy?How does the failure to tackle social problems affect democracy?Why is Indian democracy in decline?What does India's experience teach other democracies?


Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for early access to new episodes and exclusive updates and information.


Key Links

To Kill A Democracy: India's Passage to Despotism by Debasish Roy Chowdhury and John Keane

Learn more about Debasish Roy Chowdhury

Learn more about John Keane


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Bilal Baloch on Indira Gandhi, India?s Emergency, and the Importance of Ideas in Politics

Christophe Jaffrelot on Narendra Modi and Hindu Nationalism

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2022-02-15
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Lisa Disch on Representation, Constituencies, and Political Leadership

The tension in what we want from democratic representation is that we want control over our representatives and we want creativity from them. If we control them, they are delegates. They're not representatives. They do what we want. They act in our place instead of us. They act as we would in our place. If they give us creativity, they will bring things out of us and do things for us that we may not have imagined.

Lisa Disch

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Making Constituencies: Representation as Mobilization in Mass Democracy  here.

Lisa Disch is a professor of political science at the University of Michigan and an elected member of the Ann Arbor City Council. She is the author of the book Making Constituencies: Representation as Mobilization in Mass Democracy.

Key Highlights

Should elected officials serve as delegates or opinion shapers?What is the line between leadership and manipulation?What is the constituency paradox?Does representation facilitate citizen mobilization?Can realists be idealists?

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for early access to new episodes and exclusive updates and information. 


Key Links

Making Constituencies: Representation as Mobilization in Mass Democracy by Lisa Jane Disch

Learn about Lisa Disch at the University of Michigan

Lisa Disch for City Council


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Sara Wallace Goodman on Citizen Responses to Democratic Threats

Caitlin Andrews-Lee on Charismatic Movements and Personalistic Leaders

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2022-02-08
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Joseph Fishkin on the Constitution, American History, and Economic Inequality

For many Americans, for the first many generations really up through the mid 20th century, the constitutional order seemed to rest on and depend on an economic order in which people had enough economic clout to be independent citizens and voters. Not serfs dependent on some kind of master.

Joseph Fishkin

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of The Anti-Oligarchy Constitution: Reconstructing the Economic Foundations of American Democracy  here.

Joseph Fishkin is a Professor of Law at UCLA School of Law. He is the coauthor (along with William E. Forbath) of The Anti-Oligarchy Constitution: Reconstructing the Economic Foundations of American Democracy.

Key Highlights

How did Montana reform its laws to limit the influence of Amalgamated Copper?When do questions of inequality become constitutional questions?How did the courts undermine labor laws in the early 20th century?What are the affirmative obligations and duties in the constitution?What is the proper role of the courts in American politics?

Support Democracy Paradox on Patreon for early access to new episodes and exclusive updates and information.

Key Links

The Anti-Oligarchy Constitution: Reconstructing the Economic Foundations of American Democracy by Joseph Fishkin and William E. Forbath

Follow Joseph Fishkin on Twitter @joeyfishkin

Learn more about Joseph Fishkin at UCLA Law

Democracy Paradox Podcast

Donald Horowitz on the Formation of Democratic Constitutions

Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson on the Plutocratic Populism of the Republican Party

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2022-02-01
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Bilal Baloch on Indira Gandhi, India's Emergency, and the Importance of Ideas in Politics

We have core ideas that form a part of our worldview, but those core ideas are not fixed in the way in which we talk about rationality and interest in that they can evolve. And we have to, when we think about human behavior, political behavior, we have to give serious attention to those ideas and go beyond just fixed material interests.

Bilal Baloch

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of When Ideas Matter: Democracy and Corruption in India  here.

Bilal Baloch is the Co-Founder and COO of Enquire, formerly GlobalWonks. He is also a non-resident visiting scholar at the Center for the Advanced Study of India at the University of Pennsylvania and the author of When Ideas Matter: Democracy and Corruption in India.

Key Highlights

What was the Jayaprakash Narayanan Movement?Why did the State of Emergency happen in India?How do ideas influence governance?The differences between technocratic and political leadershipIs it more important to foster a diversity of ideas or support the best ideas?

 
Key Links

When Ideas Matter: Democracy and Corruption in India by Bilal Baloch

Follow Bilal Baloch on Twitter @bilalabaloch

Learn more about his company Enquire


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Christophe Jaffrelot on Narendra Modi and Hindu Nationalism

Kajri Jain Believes Democracy Unfolds through the Aesthetic

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2022-01-25
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Sara Wallace Goodman on Citizen Responses to Democratic Threats

If I could say one thing to every citizen, it's to put country before party. Which is, you know, at this time it almost feels like a hollowed phrase, because we we've kind of heard it so often. But it's like actually true.

Sara Wallace Goodman

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Citizenship in Hard Times: How Ordinary People Respond to Democratic Threat  here.

Sara Wallace Goodman is an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Irvine and the author of Citizenship in Hard Times: How Ordinary People Respond to Democratic Threat.

Key Highlights

How much agency do citizens have in democracy?The important differences between citizenship and partisanship and their implicationsThe role of both rights and duties for citizenshipDifferences between citizenship in the United States, the United Kingdom, and GermanyWhat can citizens do to protect democracy?


Key Links

Citizenship in Hard Times: How Ordinary People Respond to Democratic Threat by Sara Wallace Goodman

Learn about Sara Wallace Goodman from Wikipedia

Follow Sara Wallace Goodman on Twitter @ThatSaraGoodman

 
Democracy Paradox Podcast

Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman on Democratic Backsliding

Jan-Werner Müller on Democracy Rules

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2022-01-18
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Joseph Wright and Abel Escribà-Folch on Migration's Potential to Topple Dictatorships

This is money that flows between individuals and families and largely circumvents governments and that's a hugely important point, because the real take home of the book is that when these financial flows are controlled by citizens, it tips the balance of power in favor of citizens. When the international financial flow goes to governments, it tips the balance of power in terms of governments.

Joseph Wright

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Migration and Democracy: How Remittances Undermine Dictatorships  here.

Joe Wright is a professor of political science at Pennsylvania State University. Abel Escribà-Folch is an associate professor of political science at Universitat Pompeu Fabra. They cowrote the book Migration and Democracy: How Remittances Undermine Dictatorships along with Covadonga Meseguer.

Key Highlights

How Remittances Break Clientelistic RelationshipsThe Size and Importance of Remittances in Developing EconomiesWhy Financial Remittances Facilitate Protest MovementsCan Remittances Really Contribute to DemocratizationImplications for Immigration Policies

Key Links

Migration and Democracy: How Remittances Undermine Dictatorships by Abel Escribà-Folch, Joseph Wright, and Covadonga Meseguer

Learn more about Joseph Wright

Learn more about Abel Escribà-Folch


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Michael Miller on the Unexpected Paths to Democratization

Bryn Rosenfeld on Middle Class Support for Dictators in Autocratic Regimes

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2022-01-11
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Robert Lieberman, Kenneth Roberts, and David Bateman on Democratic Resilience and Political Polarization in the United States

So, the question is how do you respond to that? If you are the party that sees itself as being on the side of democracy and on the side of maintaining democratic norms and procedures and maintaining this kind of democratic accountability, how do you respond? Do you respond in kind? Do you respond with hardball tactics of your own?

Robert Lieberman

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Democratic Resilience: Can the United States Withstand Rising Polarization?  here.

Robert C. Lieberman is the Krieger-Eisenhower Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University. Kenneth M. Roberts is the Richard J. Schwartz Professor of Government and Binenkorb Director of Latin American Studies at Cornell University. David A. Bateman is an associate professor in the Government Department at Cornell University. Robert and Kenneth (along with Suzanne Mettler) coedited the book Democratic Resilience: Can the United States Withstand Rising Polarization?  David is a contributor to the volume. His chapter is "Elections, Polarization, and Democratic Resilience."

Key Highlights

Why did polarization become so severe in the United States?When did pernicious polarization start in America?Is polarization the fault of just one party or both?Discussion on possible judicial reforms as a solutionCan America overcome this episode of severe polarization?


Key Links

Democratic Resilience: Can the United States Withstand Rising Polarization? by Suzanne Mettler, Robert C. Lieberman, and Kenneth M. Roberts

Follow Robert C. Lieberman on Twitter @r_lieberman

Follow David Bateman on Twitter @DavidAlexBatema


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Can America Preserve Democracy without Retreating from it? Robert C. Lieberman on the Four Threats

Thomas Carothers and Andrew O?Donohue are Worried About Severe Polarization

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2022-01-04
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Angus Deaton on Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism

It's this sort of persistent loss of wages, which causes things like loss of marriage, people not living with their kids anymore, disintegration of communities with all of the things in those communities whether it's churches or union halls or society, just friendship that used to be there. And those are the things that cause people to lose meaning or, if you like, lose hope in their lives.

Angus Deaton

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism  here.

Angus Deaton is the Dwight D. Eisenhower Professor of Economics and International Affairs Emeritus at Princeton University, winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Economics, and the coauthor (with Anne Case) of Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism.

Key Hightlights

What are deaths of despair and what causes themHow did the Pandemic and the Great Recession affect deaths of despairWhy does a four year college degree affect life expectancy in the United StatesHow has health care policy in the United States contributed to deaths of despairAre deaths of despair an inevitable consequence of capitalism


Key Links

Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism by Angus Deaton and Anne Case

Nobel Prize

National Bureau of Economic Research


Democracy Paradox Podcast

Sheryl WuDunn Paints a Picture of Poverty in America and Offers Hope for Solutions

Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson on the Plutocratic Populism of the Republican Party

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2021-12-28
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Zeynep Pamuk on the Role of Science and Expertise in a Democracy

Science is never offering the whole truth. It may be offering us something accurate. Scientific findings may be reliable for now, but they are always incomplete.

Zeynep Pamuk

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Politics and Expertise: How to Use Science in a Democratic Society  here.

Zeynep Pamuk is an assistant professor of political science at the University of California, San Diego and the author of the book Politics and Expertise: How to Use Science in a Democratic Society.

Key Highlights

Why is there a tension between science and democracyThe limits of science for public policyThe Proposal for a Science CourtWays to provide greater democratic involvement in scientific fundingHow have experts performed in the pandemic


Key Links

Politics and Expertise: How to Use Science in a Democratic Society by Zeynep Pamuk

Learn more about Zeynep Pamuk at scholar.harvard.edu/zpamuk

Read Zeynep Pamuk's article "The Contours of Ignorance," in Boston Review


Related Content

Susan Rose-Ackerman on the Role of the Executive in Four Different Democracies

Chris Bickerton Defines Technopopulism

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2021-12-21
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Caitlin Andrews-Lee on Charismatic Movements and Personalist Leaders

Charismatic leaders who are intent on governing solely using their charismatic authority and subverting other things to their personal power are inherently bad for democracy and inherently illiberal. They're anti-pluralist. They don't want to share their power with others even within their own movement or their own party. They don't tolerate dissent.

Caitlin Andrews-Lee

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of The Emergence and Revival of Charismatic Movements: Argentine Peronism and Venezuelan Chavismo  here.

Caitlin Andrews-Lee is an Assistant Professor in Ryerson University?s Department of Politics and Public Administration. She is the author of the book, The Emergence and Revival of Charismatic Movements: Argentine Peronism and Venezuelan Chavismo.

Key Highlights

A profile on Juan Perón, the prototypical charismatic leaderWhy has Peronism survived its founder?Why do the anointed successors of charismatic leaders fail?How do new personalist leaders arise out of charismatic movements?Is Donald Trump a harbinger of future charismatic leaders or was he an historical aberration?


Key Links

The Emergence and Revival of Charismatic Movements: Argentine Peronism and Venezuelan Chavismo by Caitlin Andrews-Lee

Learn more about Caitlin Andrews-Lee at www.caitlinandrewslee.com

Follow Caitlin Andrews-Lee on Twitter @caitlineandrews


Related Content

Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman on Democratic Backsliding

James Loxton Explains Why Authoritarian Successor Parties Succeed in Democracies

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2021-12-14
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Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman on Democratic Backsliding

The way we conceive of democracy is being challenged by these regimes and, by that I mean, because the process of backsliding is so incremental, it's difficult to see where these boundaries are.

Stephan Haggard

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Backsliding: Democratic Regress in the Contemporary World  here.

Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman are the authors of the new book, Backsliding: Democratic Regress in the Contemporary World. Stephan is the Lawrence and Sallye Krause Distinguished Professor at the School of Global Policy and Strategy at the University of California, San Diego. Robert Kaufman is a distinguished professor of political science at Rutgers University.

Key Highlights

Describes democratic backslidingHow polarization contributes to backslidingThe role of legislatures in backsliding episodesWhat it means when authoritarians "reform" judiciariesHow can citizens reverse democratic backsliding?


Key Links

Backsliding: Democratic Regress in the Contemporary World by Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman

Learn more about Stephan Haggard at www.stephanhaggard.com

Learn more about Robert Kaufman at https://fas-polisci.rutgers.edu/kaufman/

 

Related Content

Freedom House: Sarah Repucci Assesses Freedom in the World

Thomas Carothers and Andrew O?Donohue are Worried About Severe Polarization

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2021-12-07
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Joshua Yaffa on Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin's Russia

?What would you prefer? Would you prefer that this boy, Vasya, die because he couldn't get dialysis? Would you prefer that this girl, Katya, die from her shrapnel wounds that she suffered during the war that was obviously not her fault? Right? Like would it be better if I held my nose and refuse to engage in these compromises so these kids died? Would you be sort of happier, so you could write about how awful the bloody Putin regime is??

Joshua Yaffa explaining the perspective of Russian humanitarian Elizaveta Glinka

A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a short review of Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin's Russia here.

Joshua Yaffa joins the podcast to discuss his new book Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin's Russia. He is a correspondent for The New Yorker based primarily in Moscow, Russia.

Key Highlights

Who was Dr. Liza?The types of compromises must Russians make with the state to pursue their dreamsThe role of the Russian state in the arts through the story of theater director Kirill SerebrennikovLegal challenges for business owners in Russia through the experience of zookeeper Oleg ZubkovThe limited space for human rights activism in Chechnya through the experience of Heda Saratova


Key Links

Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin's Russia by Joshua Yaffa

Learn more about Joshua Yaffa at www.joshuayaffa.com.

Follow Joshua Yaffa on Twitter @yaffaesque

Related Content

Timothy Frye Says Putin is a Weak Strongman

Bryn Rosenfeld on Middle Class Support for Dictators in Autocratic Regimes

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2021-11-30
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