Anne Applebaum on why democracy is not inevitable


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Journalist, author, and historian Anne Applebaum says that democracy is not like running water — something that we know will always be there when we turn on the tap. Her latest book Twilight of Democracy, highlights the ways in which countries around the world are coming to terms with this fact and provides suggestions for how we can do our part to keep the water flowing.

Applebaum is a staff writer at The Atlantic, a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, and a senior fellow at The Agora Institute at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. She joined the McCourtney Institute for Democracy for a virtual event on February 17, 2021 to discuss her most recent book, Twilight of Democracy: The Seductive Lure of Authoritarianism.

This episode includes the closing remarks from Applebaum’s lecture, followed by a Q&A with Democracy Works host Jenna Spinelle that covers the future of the Republican Party, how the Cold War served as a unifier for Republicans and Democrats, and why she believes economic inequality and democratic erosion are not as closely linked as some people think.

Additional Information

Video of Applebaum’s Feb. 17 lecture

Twilight of Democracy: The Seductive Lure of Authoritarianism

Applebaum’s work in The Atlantic

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