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How Democracies Die

by Steven Levitsky , Daniel Ziblatt

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How Democracies Die
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Overview

Overview

How Democracies Die by Steven Levitsky, Daniel Ziblatt

A bracing, revelatory look at the demise of liberal democracies around the world—and a road map for rescuing our own
 
Donald Trump’s presidency has raised a question that many of us never thought we’d be asking: Is our democracy in danger? Harvard professors Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt have spent more than twenty years studying the breakdown of democracies in Europe and Latin America, and they believe the answer is yes. Democracy no longer ends with a bang—in a revolution or military coup—but with a whimper: the slow, steady weakening of critical institutions, such as the judiciary and the press, and the gradual erosion of long-standing political norms. The good news is that there are several exit ramps on the road to authoritarianism. The bad news is that, by electing Trump, we have already passed the first one.

Drawing on decades of research and a wide range of historical and global examples, from 1930s Europe to contemporary Hungary, Turkey, and Venezuela, to the American South during Jim Crow, Levitsky and Ziblatt show how democracies die—and how ours can be saved.

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Product Details
ISBN-13:
9781524762933
9781524762933
Publisher:
Crown/Archetype
Crown/Archetype
Publication date:
01/16/2018
Pages:
320
320
Sales rank:
130,844
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x (d)
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About the Author

About the Author

Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt are Professors of Government at Harvard University. Levitsky’s research focuses on Latin America and the developing world. He is the author of Competitive Authoritarianism and is the recipient of numerous teaching awards. Ziblatt studies Europe from the nineteenth century to the present. He is the author, most recently, of Conservative Parties and the Birth of Democracy. Both Levitsky and Ziblatt have written for Vox and The New York Times, among other publications.

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Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Chilling… A provocative analysis of the parallels between Donald Trump's ascent and the fall of other democracies.”
Kirkus Reviews

"Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt have offered a brilliant diagnosis of the most important issue facing our world: Can democracy survive? With clinical precision and an extraordinary grasp of history, they point to the warning signs of decay and define the obligations of those who would preserve free government. If there is an urgent book for you to read at this moment, it is How Democracies Die."
E.J. Dionne Jr., co-author of One Nation After Trump
 
"Levitsky and Ziblatt are leading scholars of democracy in other parts of the world, who with great energy and integrity now apply their expertise to the current problems of the United States. The reader feels the intellectual excitement, and also the political warning, as the authors draw the connections from their own vast knowledge to the chaos that we experience each day."
Timothy Snyder, author of On Tyranny
 
“We live in perilous times. Anyone who is concerned about the future of American democracy should read this brisk, accessible book. Anyone who is not concerned should definitely read it.” 
—Daron Acemoglu, co-author of Why Nations Fail

"All Americans who care about the future of their country should read this magisterial, compelling book, which sweeps across the globe and through history to analyze how democracies die. The result is an unforgettable framework for diagnosing the state of affairs here at home and our prospects for recovery."
Danielle Allen, author of Our Declaration and Cuz

 "Two years ago, a book like this could not have been written: two leading political scientists who are expert in the breakdown of democracy in other parts of the world using that knowledge to inform Americans of the dangers their democracy faces today. We owe the authors a debt of thanks for bringing their deep understanding to bear on the central political issue of the day."
—Francis Fukuyama, author of Political Order and Political Decay
 
"In this brilliant historical synthesis, Levitsky and Ziblatt show how the actions of elected leaders around the world have paved the road to democratic failure, and why the United States is now vulnerable to this same downward spiral. This book should be widely and urgently read as a clarion call to restore the shared beliefs and practices—beyond our formal constitution—that constitute the essential ‘guardrails’ for preserving democracy."
Larry Diamond, author of The Spirit of Democracy

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  • Available for Pre-Order. This item will be available on January 16, 2018

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    Pub. Date: 01/16/2018
    Publisher: Crown/Archetype
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