Recommended Readings, The Times We Live In
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Lessons from the death of democracies

How Democracies Die by Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt was tapped as my Book of the Year when I first read it in 2018. I bring it up again today, just three short weeks before our election,

It took me less than a minute to find these four recent threats to our democracy: flagrant disregard for the law, violent threats against political opponents, attempts to lock-in minority rule, and overt racism. That was enough to lead me to highlight this sobering work yet again.

Levitsky and Ziblatt are two Harvard professors who have spent twenty years studying the decline of democracies all around the world.  Their research shows that more often than not, it is the slow decline of institutions such as the judiciary and press that lead countries to move from democratic to authoritarian governments. 

This accessible book is highly recommended, and perhaps should be required reading for the entire country at this point in time. If you have any doubts about the seriousness of the fight to save our democracy, this is as good a book as any to consult.

More to come…

DJB

NOTE #1: During October, I am writing articles on how history and the places where history happened can help us understand the issues we are facing as a country and a democracy. Besides this book review on how democracies die, you can find posts on racial violencereligious liberty, voter suppression and revealed history by clicking on the links.

NOTE #2: My initial review of this work was buried in the middle of a series of short reviews of books read over my summer break. I bring it out here in a short, separate review so I can highlight and reference it at this crucial time.

This entry was posted in: Recommended Readings, The Times We Live In

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I am David J. Brown (hence the DJB) and I originally created this personal blog more than ten years ago as a way to capture photos and memories from a family vacation. After the trip was over I simply continued writing. Over the years the blog has changed to have a more definite focus aligned with my interest in places that matter, reading well, roots music, and more. My professional background is as a national nonprofit leader with a four-decade record of growing and strengthening organizations at local, state, and national levels. This work has been driven by my passion for connecting people in thriving, sustainable, and vibrant communities.

5 Comments

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