Authors to discuss ‘How Democracies Die’ at Loyola’s Hanway Lecture
Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt, political scientists at Harvard University and co-authors of award-winning book “How Democracies Die,” will deliver Loyola University Maryland’s Hanway Lecture in Global Studies on Thursday, Oct. 27, at 7 p.m. in McGuire Hall. The event will also be livestreamed.
Levitsky and Ziblatt will present “Killing Democracies from Within.” The moderated discussion will explore how political leaders weaken democracies from the inside by degrading the government’s ability to function and by stoking polarization in society to funnel power to themselves. The rise of authoritarian governments conjures images of violent dictators, revolutions, and mobs, but Levitsky and Ziblatt will show how political changes are usually slow-building and subtle. A Q&A will follow the discussion.
In their book and lectures, Levitsky and Ziblatt warn against the steady weakening of critical institutions, such as the judiciary and the press, and the gradual erosion of long-standing political norms. 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 they can be preserved.
“How Democracies Die” was a New York Times Book Review “Editor’s Choice,” one of Newsweek’s “50 Best Books of the Year So Far,” one of Time magazine’s “10 Best Nonfiction Books of 2018,” and was recommended by Barack Obama as “a useful primer on the importance of norms, institutional restraints, and civic participation in maintaining a democracy.”
Levitsky is the David Rockefeller Professor of Latin American Studies and Professor of Government at Harvard University, where he serves on the executive committee for the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies.
Ziblatt is Eaton Professor of the Science of Government at Harvard University where he is also a resident faculty associate of the Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies and Harvard’s Weatherhead Center for International Affairs.
Levitsky and Ziblatt are co-chairs of the new Challenges to Democracy Research Cluster at Harvard’s Weatherhead Center.
Registration to attend the lecture is required. To learn more, register and submit questions for the Q&A, visit www.loyola.edu/hanwaylecture.