Why authoritarianism?

Listen 00:49:31

Guests: Manu Bhagavan, Howard Lavine

The people of Turkey recently voted to give president Erdoğan more authority than their constitution had previously provided, altering the country from a parliamentary democracy to a presidential republic. So why would the Turkish people want to eliminate the checks on their president? Across the globe, countries seem to be opting in to authoritarianism, arguably including the United States with the election of Donald Trump. Trump himself has showed affection for these kinds of leaders, including Erdoğan, Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong-un, Xi Jinping, and Rodrigo Duterte. Today on the show, we’re going to discuss what has led to the rise of the “strongman,” and why some personality types prefer authoritarian rulers. We’re joined by MANU BHAGAVAN, who teaches history and human rights at Hunter College and the Graduate Center-CUNY, and by HOWARD LAVINE, professor of political science and psychology at the University of Minnesota.

Reading list:

“We are witnessing the rise of global authoritarianism on a chilling scale” – Manu Bhagavan (Quartz)

“Trump, Duterte – brothers from another mother” – Dana Milbank (The Washington Post)

“The authoritarian president” – Robert Reich (BillMoyers.com)

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