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Democracy in Decline?

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For almost a decade, Freedom House's annual survey has highlighted a decline in democracy in most regions of the globe. While some analysts draw upon this evidence to argue that the world has entered a "democratic recession," others dispute that interpretation, emphasizing instead democracy's success in maintaining the huge gains it made during the last quarter of the twen For almost a decade, Freedom House's annual survey has highlighted a decline in democracy in most regions of the globe. While some analysts draw upon this evidence to argue that the world has entered a "democratic recession," others dispute that interpretation, emphasizing instead democracy's success in maintaining the huge gains it made during the last quarter of the twentieth century. Discussion of this question has moved beyond disputes about how many countries should be classified as democratic to embrace a host of wider concerns about the health of democracy: the poor economic and political performance of advanced democracies, the new self-confidence and assertiveness of a number of leading authoritarian countries, and a geopolitical weakening of democracies relative to these resurgent authoritarians. In Democracy in Decline?, eight of the world's leading public intellectuals and scholars of democracy--Francis Fukuyama, Robert Kagan, Philippe C. Schmitter, Steven Levitsky, Lucan Way, Thomas Carothers, and editors Larry Diamond and Marc F. Plattner--explore these concerns and offer competing viewpoints about the state of democracy today. This short collection of essays is essential reading for anyone wanting to understand the latest thinking on one of the most critical questions of our era.


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For almost a decade, Freedom House's annual survey has highlighted a decline in democracy in most regions of the globe. While some analysts draw upon this evidence to argue that the world has entered a "democratic recession," others dispute that interpretation, emphasizing instead democracy's success in maintaining the huge gains it made during the last quarter of the twen For almost a decade, Freedom House's annual survey has highlighted a decline in democracy in most regions of the globe. While some analysts draw upon this evidence to argue that the world has entered a "democratic recession," others dispute that interpretation, emphasizing instead democracy's success in maintaining the huge gains it made during the last quarter of the twentieth century. Discussion of this question has moved beyond disputes about how many countries should be classified as democratic to embrace a host of wider concerns about the health of democracy: the poor economic and political performance of advanced democracies, the new self-confidence and assertiveness of a number of leading authoritarian countries, and a geopolitical weakening of democracies relative to these resurgent authoritarians. In Democracy in Decline?, eight of the world's leading public intellectuals and scholars of democracy--Francis Fukuyama, Robert Kagan, Philippe C. Schmitter, Steven Levitsky, Lucan Way, Thomas Carothers, and editors Larry Diamond and Marc F. Plattner--explore these concerns and offer competing viewpoints about the state of democracy today. This short collection of essays is essential reading for anyone wanting to understand the latest thinking on one of the most critical questions of our era.

51 review for Democracy in Decline?

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mike Staresinic

    The book is an accurate and sobering read of the state of democracy. While many of its conclusions will be news for the general reader, specialists will recognize that the decline of democracy has been happening over the past 15 years. That it took leading experts - I can't think of anybody I would rate higher than Larry Diamond - this long to produce such a valuable testament is part of the challenge of policy-makers and think tanks adapting to an ever-accelerating pace of change. The book is an accurate and sobering read of the state of democracy. While many of its conclusions will be news for the general reader, specialists will recognize that the decline of democracy has been happening over the past 15 years. That it took leading experts - I can't think of anybody I would rate higher than Larry Diamond - this long to produce such a valuable testament is part of the challenge of policy-makers and think tanks adapting to an ever-accelerating pace of change.

  2. 5 out of 5

    OSCAR

    El libro te deja insatisfecho. Su prosa sencilla (lo leí en inglés) facilita la lectura; sin embargo es difícil llegar a una conclusión in toto de la obra. Cada autor mostró las deficiencia de la democracia desde su área de pericia o expertise, lo cual otorga riqueza de miradas a un libro que a ratos es insípido, y que carece de sustancia La idea general es la admisión de la molestia con la democracia actualmente existente. Esto permite a cada uno de los autores de las entradas o capítulos dar j El libro te deja insatisfecho. Su prosa sencilla (lo leí en inglés) facilita la lectura; sin embargo es difícil llegar a una conclusión in toto de la obra. Cada autor mostró las deficiencia de la democracia desde su área de pericia o expertise, lo cual otorga riqueza de miradas a un libro que a ratos es insípido, y que carece de sustancia La idea general es la admisión de la molestia con la democracia actualmente existente. Esto permite a cada uno de los autores de las entradas o capítulos dar juicios sobre el presente y futuro de la democracia que distan mucho entre sí e incluso chocan. Para algunos la democracia no estuvo jamás en crisis, o que naufragó fue una retahíla de prejuicios sobre la caída de regímenes autoritarios que se creyó la posibilidad o la ineludible necesidad de su democratización. Para otros la debacle es poco pronunciada pero palpable; para algunos más pesimistas, la democracia vuelve a enfrentarse a movimientos parroquiales pero exitosos como el régimen chino, el ruso o el régimen de Singapur. Esto causa perplejidad en el lector. ¿Vencerá la democracia? ¿Habrá zonas impermeables a la democracia? ¿Será menester que el mundo libre se alce en una guerra que tal vez no puede sostener contra los regímenes autoritarios? Son interrogantes que se producen después de hojear el libro. Considero que todavía hay un serio problema en distinguir realidades coincidentes pero diferentes: el liberalismo, el proceso democrático, la legitimidad del poder soberano en el pueblo y el aburguesamiento. No dudo que los chinos o la gente de Singapur degeneren y se abran a la ideología de género o al feminismo, pero ¿eso los llevará a la democracia? A veces sostengo que la democracia ha resultado un premio de consolación para la gente cuando no fue posible encontrar su propia vía para dirigir su vida como pueblo. En México la democracia de tipo liberal aparece cuando fracasó la revolución. en otros sitios ha servido para justificar el domino de élites cosmopolitas degeneradas. Los intelectuales invitados a redactar capítulos para la antología presente cuentan con grandes credenciales pero considero que no hilan finamente sus argumentos y no pueden ver que si bien la democracia es el único camino posible, tal vez es lo que nos está matando quietamente, como cuando uno respira gas hasta morir plácidamente. La democracia abre la puerta a la expoliación del Estado y donde no ha sido deturpada se ha convertido en un gobierno tecnificado que puede en algún momento dejar las formas electorales. Posiblemente el legado de las generaciones pasadas se han agotado producto de caprichos incluso en las democracias más “avanzadas” y pronto por falta de dinero o por imposibilidad de obtener nuevos recursos, veamos su fin. El texto parece lanzar un velo para ignorar que la democracia no está en crisis sino en decadencia. Esto lo vuelve un panfleto, mediocre pero al fin y al cabo, panfleto. Considero que los apologistas de la democracia todavía no han hecho un examen de conciencia sincero sobre la situación en la que viven y eso me molesta.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Dashnorov Oyuntugs

  4. 4 out of 5

    Minh Nhật

  5. 5 out of 5

    John

  6. 4 out of 5

    Mdu Mhlanga

  7. 5 out of 5

    Siddharth Preetam

  8. 4 out of 5

    Laydi Anne

  9. 5 out of 5

    Robert

  10. 5 out of 5

    Christopher Allen

  11. 5 out of 5

    I-am-not-there

  12. 5 out of 5

    Gerardo Noto

  13. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra

  14. 4 out of 5

    爾凡

  15. 4 out of 5

    Nancy Baldwin-white

  16. 5 out of 5

    Rosie

  17. 4 out of 5

    R Lidd

  18. 5 out of 5

    Aline Silva

  19. 4 out of 5

    André Galrito

  20. 5 out of 5

    Mike

  21. 4 out of 5

    CK Yau

  22. 4 out of 5

    Junhyoung Lee

  23. 5 out of 5

    Arturo

  24. 4 out of 5

    Christopher Banks

  25. 4 out of 5

    Toks

  26. 5 out of 5

    mirka tokar

  27. 5 out of 5

    Tatev Zoryan

  28. 4 out of 5

    Amar Baines

  29. 5 out of 5

    Hazim Yusoff

  30. 5 out of 5

    Prasanna

  31. 5 out of 5

    Faine

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    Audrey

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    Chris

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    Gus Mendonca

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    Ia

  36. 5 out of 5

    Chris

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    Richard Kolivoski

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    Michael

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    Thomas Myers

  40. 4 out of 5

    QuyAn

  41. 4 out of 5

    Lee Herman

  42. 5 out of 5

    Ty

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  44. 4 out of 5

    Alie

  45. 5 out of 5

    Ina Cawl

  46. 5 out of 5

    Jenna

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    Whitney

  48. 5 out of 5

    Steve Holland

  49. 4 out of 5

    mysteredgar

  50. 4 out of 5

    Ada

  51. 4 out of 5

    Ali

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