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Democracy Paradox

Author: Justin Kempf

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The Democracy Paradox explores the diverse range of perspectives and insights about democracy through an interview format. Every week new scholars are invited to share their breakthrough research or bold ideas about politics, economics, and society. Most interviews are stand alone episodes, but some are tied together like the three episode arc "Resistance, Revolution, Democracy" which explored the concept of civil resistance and revolution to produce democracies. These three interviews featured Erica Chenoweth, George Lawson, and Johnathan Pinckney. Listeners can also visit www.democracyparadox.com to read weekly reviews on classic works of politics, international relations, and philosophy. Democracy is a complex and nuanced concept. It challenges our preconceptions. Take the time to explore the Democracy Paradox.
59 Episodes
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This was not a phenomenon to one specific region. This was nothing that got invented in one place and at one time. It seems to have emerged independently in a wide, wide variety of human societies at different points in time. And to me, that sounds like something that occurs naturally.David StasavageA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.David Stasavage is the Dean of Social Sciences and a Professor of Politics at New York University. His latest book is called The Decline and Rise of Democracy.Key Highlights IncludeA description of early democracy with an example of the Huron peopleWhy autocracy arose through the example of Ancient ChinaHow bureaucracy and the state changed governanceHow English history shaped modern democracyWhat modern democracy can learn from early forms of democracyKey LinksThe Decline and Rise of Democracy by David StasavageLearn more about David StasavageFollow David on Twitter @stasavageRelated ContentDaniel Carpenter Revisits the Petition in 19th Century AmericaMichael Hughes on the History of Democracy in GermanyMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
The police is even acting directly against the minorities and the Delhi riots of 2020 showed that the police could be on their side in the street in their rioting activities. This is exactly the same in other BGP ruled states like Uttar Pradesh. Now you have indeed a kind of new shift, if you want. It's not only with the blessing of the state. It’s also with the active participation of the state.Christophe JaffrelotA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Christophe Jaffrelot is a director of research at Sciences Po and a professor of Indian politics and sociology at King’s College. His latest book is Modi's India: Hindu Nationalism and the Rise of Ethnic Democracy. Key Highlights IncludeDescription of Hindutva or Hindu NationalismA brief account of the RSSAn account of the Ayodhya Temple ControversyExplains how Narendra Modi came to powerProspects for the future of Indian democracyKey LinksModi's India: Hindu Nationalism and the Rise of Ethnic Democracy by Christophe Jaffrelot"Toward a Hindu State" by Christophe Jaffrelot in the Journal of DemocracyFollow Christophe on Twitter @jaffrelotcRelated ContentFreedom House: Sarah Repucci Assesses Freedom in the WorldKajri Jain Believes Democracy Unfolds through the AestheticMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
It really matters how you set up conflict and how you talk about the issue and above all how you talk about your adversary. That's where I see the decisive difference between those who tend to invoke the people, the common good and et cetera, in a way that is compatible with democracy and then those who talk in a way that, ultimately, is bound to be dangerous for democracy.Jan-Werner MüllerA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Jan is a professor of Social Sciences at Princeton University. He is the author of the books What is Populism? and Democracy Rules.Key Highlights IncludeWhat does it mean to be undemocratic in a democracyWhy populism threatens democracyRole of conflict in democracyWhat is militant democracy and is it democraticRole of the majority and opposition in democracy Key LinksDemocracy Rules by Jan-Werner MüllerWhat is Populism? by Jan-Werner Müller"False Flags" from Foreign Affairs by Jan-Werner MüllerRelated ContentChris Bickerton Defines TechnopopulismZizi Papacharissi Dreams of What Comes After DemocracyMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
They wanted the full array of rights. Political rights, yes, they were active in the suffrage movement, but they also wanted economic rights and social rights. They wanted to lessen inequalities. They also wanted the rights of mothers and of children advanced.Dorothy Sue CobbleA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Dorothy Sue Cobble is the Distinguished Professor of History and Labor Studies Emerita at Rutgers University and the author of For the Many: American Feminists and the Global Fight for Democratic Equality.Key Highlights IncludeDorothy explains who the full rights feminists were and what they advocated forProfiles of full rights feminists like Frances PerkinsHow full rights feminism influenced the New DealA brief history of the conflicts between full rights feminists and equal rights feminists over the Equal Rights AmendmentA profile of early Japanese feminist Tanaka TakaKey LinksFor the Many: American Feminists and the Global Fight for Democratic Equality by Dorothy Sue CobbleVisit Dorothy at www.dorothysuecobble.comLearn about the Triangle Shirtwaist Workers StrikeRelated ContentDerek W. Black Says Public Education Represents the Idea of America... Not its RealityBarbara Freese on Corporate DenialMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
Democracy is about more than elections. Election day is very important, but what is happening in the country every other day is an integral part to what a democracy is and if you think about the fundamental freedoms that we think of in our own democracy: free speech, freedom of religion, freedom of association and assembly, also things like the independence of the judiciary, these are all things that are on the civil liberties side.Sarah RepucciA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Sarah Repucci is the Vice President of Research and Analysis at Freedom House and coauthor (alongside  Amy Slipowitz) of the executive summary of the report Freedom in the World 2021: Democracy Under Siege.* Note * Sarah's mic died early in the interview. The audio quality is not bad, but will sound different. Hopefully it does not take away from the quality of the interview.Key Highlights IncludeWhy democracy continues its steady declineThe influence of China and the U.S. on global democracyThe role of civil liberties in democracyImpact of the pandemic on democracyDiscussion of democracy in India, Kyrgyzstan, Sudan, and the United StatesKey LinksRead the landmark report from Freedom House Freedom in the World 2021: Democracy Under SiegeVisit Freedom House online at www.freedomhouse.orgFollow Freedom House on Twitter @freedomhouseRelated ContentMichael Miller on the Unexpected Paths to DemocratizationThomas Carothers and Andrew O'Donohue are Worried About Severe PolarizationMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
So many cases of democratization start with these episodes and this period of elite political violence where the initial stages of it have nothing to do with democratization. People are not aiming for that. People are barely even thinking about it. It's all about this elite political struggle and out of that chaos a bit later you get democracy.Michael MillerA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Michael Miller is a professor of political science and international relations at George Washington University and the author of the forthcoming book Shock to the System: Coups, Elections, and War on the Road to Democratization. Key Highlights IncludeHow violent shocks like coups and civil wars create openings for democratizationWhy autocratic ruling parties continue to win elections in democraciesThe role for democratic activists in the democratization processDiscussions on possibilities for democracy in China, Belarus, and Myanmar.Mike offers a blueprint for an unconventional approach for democracy promotion Key LinksShock to the System: Coups, Elections, and War on the Road to Democratization by Michael K. MillerFollow Michael on Twitter @mkmdemLearn more about Michael's workRelated ContentJames Loxton Explains Why Authoritarian Successor Parties Succeed in DemocraciesElizabeth Nugent on Polarization, Democratization and the Arab SpringMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
The idea of a political system is not simply to be efficient. It's to have justice. It's to have the idea that anybody can come to the seat of power and say, 'Here are my grievances,' and that doesn't mean that by making that claim, they will get exactly what they want. But it does mean that they will get a hearing and in that notion, I think, lies again, a certain part of democracy that is not reduceable just to elections.Daniel CarpenterA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Dan Carpenter is the Allie S. Freed professor of Government at Harvard University and the author of Democracy by Petition: Popular Politics in Transformation, 1790-1870.Key Highlights IncludeA history of petitions in the 19th century including an account of the gag rule.The role of petitions in the mobilization of women, Native Americans, the Whig Party, and the antislavery movementHow did petitions contribute to democratization of America in the 19th centuryWhat would Congress look like if we still had 'petition days'What can we learn from the era of petition politicsKey LinksDemocracy by Petition: Popular Politics in Transformation, 1790-1870 by Daniel Carpenter"The Menthol Cigarette Ban Shows There Is No Democracy Without Petitions," by Daniel Carpenter, Boston Review"Robust Claims of Vast Lawlessness" from Lapham's Quarterly by Daniel CarpenterRelated ContentCan America Preserve Democracy without Retreating from it? Robert C. Lieberman on the Four ThreatsDerek W. Black Says Public Education Represents the Idea of America... Not its RealityMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicOut of Order from the German Marshall FundEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
The experience of Western colonization has imprinted all of these nations in profound ways and it's tended to inculcate a sort of skepticism about Western invocations of democracy and the rule of law. China, of course, shares a similar skepticism. China was also not formerly colonized, or not fully colonized by Western powers, but it experienced what the Chinese communist party likes to term a century of humiliation.  And so, both regions share an abiding ambivalence about the current international order.Sebastian StrangioA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Sebastian Strangio is the Southeast Asia Editor at The Diplomat and the author of In the Dragon's Shadow: Southeast Asia in the Chinese Century.Key Highlights IncludeSebastian explains the economic, political, and cultural ties between China and Southeast AsiaAn overview of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)An explanation of the South China Sea disputeDistinguishes between maritime and mainland nations in Southeast AsiaChina's approach to Southeast Asia under Xi JinpingKey LinksIn the Dragon's Shadow: Southeast Asia in the Chinese Century by Sebastian Strangiowww.thediplomat.comwww.sebastianstrangio.comRelated ContentMareike Ohlberg on the Global Influence of the Chinese Communist PartyXiaoyu Pu on China's Global IdentitiesMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicOn Opinion: The Parlia PodcastEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
Racism and racial conflict are always there, always a powerful and important part of American politics. But when they combine with polarization, with this kind of partisan antagonism, and when that becomes the dividing line between the parties, that's really dangerous. That's what happened in the 1850s. It led to civil war. That's what happened in the 1890s. It led to violent conflict and mass disenfranchisement. And it's happening again today.Robert C. LiebermanA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Key Highlights IncludeAn account of the 1898 insurrection in Wilmington, North Carolina.Is polarization the fault of both sides or is one party responsible?How the election of 1896 affected American democracy.How polarization, conflicts over who belongs, rising economic inequality, and executive aggrandizement interact to threaten democracy in the United States.Does the preservation of democracy really require democratic backsliding?Robert Lieberman is a professor of political science at Johns Hopkins University and  coauthored Four Threats: The Recurring Crises of American Democracy with Suzanne Mettler.Key LinksFour Threats: The Recurring Crises of American Democracy by Robert C. Lieberman and Suzanne Mettler"Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation" by John Lewis in The New York TimesFollow Rob Lieberman on Twitter @r_liebermanRelated ContentDerek W. Black Says Public Education Represents the Idea of America... Not its RealityJacob Hacker and Paul Pierson on the Plutocratic Populism of the Republican PartyMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicThe Science of PoliticsEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
In the 19th century Europe had thought that they had moved towards liberalism, enlightenment, rationality, progress, that stuff like mass warfare was over and it wouldn't come back. And then you have four years of senseless, mass slaughter, they just totally destroyed or challenged those ideas of humankind getting better off, progress of humankind getting more civilized. In retrospect, it's hard to imagine the coincidence of deep challenges and crises that wrecked the interwar years.Kurt WeylandA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Key Highlights IncludeKurt clarifies the concept of totalitarian fascism from conservative authoritarianismA description of the political environment of the interwar periodWhy did authoritarians disliked communism and fascism?Why did fascism emerge during this period?Is there a parallel between the interwar period to today?Kurt Weyland is a professor of political science at the University of Texas at Austin and the author of the new book Assault on Democracy: Communism, Fascism, and Authoritarianism During the Interwar Years. Key LinksAssault on Democracy: Communism, Fascism, and Authoritarianism During the Interwar Years by Kurt Weyland"The Real Lessons of the Interwar Years" by Agnes Cornell, Jørgen Møller, Svend-Erik Skaaning in Journal of Democracy, July 2017Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation by Juan J. Linz and Alfred StepanRelated ContentAgnes Cornell and Svend-Erik Skaaning on the Interwar PeriodPaul Robinson on Russian ConservatismMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicAnother Way PodcastEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
They really view their history as one of victimization, one of struggle and even martyrdom. ARENA had multiple leaders assassinated. Again, that version of history that I just told you, that's not necessarily my view. But I do actually believe that that is their sincere belief and it makes for a really compelling founding myth if you will. And I think that founding myth has helped to hold both parties together right up until the present day.James LoxtonA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Key Highlights IncludeWhy do voters elect leaders with ties to former dictators?Description of authoritarian successor partiesChallenges for conservative party formationA brief history of the UDI in Chile and ARENA in El SalvadorThe role of counterrevolutionary struggleKey LinksConservative Party-Building in Latin America: Authoritarian Inheritance and Counterrevolutionary Struggle by James Loxton"Authoritarian Successor Parties" by James Loxton in Journal of Democracy, July 2015Visit James at www.jamesloxton.netRelated ContentBryn Rosenfeld on Middle Class Support for Dictators in Autocratic RegimesAmy Erica Smith on Politics and Religion in BrazilMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicDemocracy Matters PodcastEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
I find it hard to believe, without a lot more justification than they're offering that somehow that there's this new secret sauce to opportunity and equality and democracy that does not involve public education as the fundamental pillar. So you have people arguing that it's not. They're not saying we want to destroy democracy, but I'm saying, you as reader, you as listeners, need to think about the long-term consequences of shrinking the public education footprint and moving back into a siloed or a fiefdom or a private system that resembles our darkest days.Derek W. BlackA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Key Highlights IncludeDerek explains the case for a right to education.A brief history of public education in the United StatesHow the NAACP used the language of democracy in their litigation for school desegregationWhy vouchers and charter schools threaten public educationFinally, the intersection of public education and democracy runs throughout the conversationKey LinksSchoolhouse Burning: Public Education and the Assault on American Democracy by Derek W. BlackSan Antonio Independent School District et. al. v. RodriguezFollow Derek W. Black @DerekWBlackRelated ContentJacob Hacker and Paul Pierson on the Plutocratic Populism of the Republican PartyCarolyn Hendriks, Selen Ercan and John Boswell on Mending DemocracyMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicSwamp StoriesEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
That's why all Americans should care. Because the cost of poverty is not just the cost to that person who is in poverty. It's a cost to all of society. We're all paying for people being jailed. We're all paying for extra costs in the legal system, in the police force, in the healthcare system.Sheryl WuDunnA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Key Highlights IncludeStories of Poverty and Inequality in AmericaChallenges in America in Education, Health, and Well-BeingImpact of Poverty on Children with an Explanation of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)Collective Responsibility to Solve Social ProblemsRethinking of Social Programs as Investments Rather than OutlaysSheryl WuDunn is a pulitzer prize winning reporter, business executive, and the author of Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope (along with her husband Nicholas Kristof). Key LinksTightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope by Sheryl WuDunn and Nicholas KristofTightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope - PBS Documentary Presented by Show of ForceFollow Sheryl on Twitter @WuDunnRelated ContentJacob Hacker and Paul Pierson on the Plutocratic Populism of the Republican PartyZizi Papacharissi Dreams of What Comes After DemocracyMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
Doctrine is actually often a lot looser and more subject to interpretation than we tend to assume and the way that the doctrine gets interpreted is often partially a function of group interests themselves. If you have a religious group in a given country that believes it would benefit from democracy, it's pretty likely that that group will find a way to interpret and frame its doctrine in a way that supports democracy.- Mike HoffmanA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Key Highlights IncludeRole of Religion in Identity FormationHow Communal Prayer Shapes Religious IdentityWays Group Interests Shape Perspectives on DemocracyDescription of Lebanon's Political SystemWhy Some Groups Oppose DemocracyMike Hoffman is a professor of political science at Notre Dame and the author of Faith in Numbers: Religion, Sectarianism, and Democracy.Key LinksFaith in Numbers: Religion, Sectarianism, and Democracy by Michael HoffmanEconomic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy by Daron Acemoglu and James RobinsonPatterns of Democracy by Arend LijphartRelated ContentElizabeth Nugent on Polarization, Democratization and the Arab SpringBryn Rosenfeld on Middle Class Support for Dictators in Autocratic RegimesMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicDemocracy WorksEmail the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
Participatory budgeting is actually about connecting folks with the skills and resources to navigate and shape government. And so, for me, that is the most optimistic and the most important outcome of any participatory budgeting process.Shari DavisA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Key Highlights IncludeA walk through the process of participatory budgeting with an exampleThe history of participatory budgeting around the worldAn example of participatory budgeting in ChinaThe Role of Art in DemocracyNext steps for Participatory BudgetingShari Davis leads the Participatory Budget Project as its Executive Director. They have over 15 years working in local government beginning in high school. And not long ago they were honored as an Obama Fellow. Key LinksParticipatory Budgeting ProjectDemocracy Beyond Elections"Why is Democracy Performing so Poorly" by Francis FukuyamaRelated ContentHélène Landemore on Democracy without ElectionsCarolyn Hendriks, Selen Ercan and John Boswell on Mending DemocracyMore from the PodcastMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicHow Do We Fix It?Email the show at democracyparadoxblog@gmail.comFollow me on Twitter @DemParadox100 Books on Democracy
That tension between the politics of the whole and the politics of the part, that tension between the politics of generality and the politics of particularity, is really at the heart of party democracy. What we are sort of trying to capture, I suppose, with technopopulism is to think of a form of politics where that tension has simply gone.Chris BickertonA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Key Highlights Include- Chris describes Technopopulism through an explanation of the Five Star Movement in Italy- We discuss how populists and technologists consider expertise- How technopopulism is different from classic interest-based politics- We discuss ANO and the Pirate Party in the Czech Republic- Barak Obama is analyzed in the lens of technopopulism- Chris explains how he thinks we can move beyond technopopulismChris Bickerton is a reader of of Modern European Politics at the University of Cambridge. Alongside Carlo Invernizzi Accetti, he is the coauthor of Technopopulism: The New Logic of Democratic Politics.  He is also a frequent panelist on Talking Politics. More InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicLet's Find Common GroundKey LinksTechnopopulism: The New Logic of Democratic Politics by Christopher Bickerton and Carlo Invernizzi Accetti"Understanding the Illiberal Turn: Democratic Backsliding in the Czech Republic" by Seán Hanley and Milada Anna VachudovaFive Star Movement at WikipediaRelated ContentChad Alan Goldberg on the Wisconsin Idea and the Role of the Public University in a DemocracyThomas Carothers and Andrew O'Donohue are Worried About Severe PolarizationMore from the Podcast
The legislature is one of several examples of our history of being independent which is why I think it was such an important story to tell of Nebraska becoming like baptized into Republican orthodoxy. Because seeing that shift. That it wasn't always that way. We founded Arbor day in this state, we settle a lot of refugees per capita, we increased minimum wage, and Medicaid through ballot measures recently. We do stuff like that.- Ross BenesA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Red states and blue states. Republicans and Democrats. Rural and urban. Polarization. It is a term often heard about American politics. Most states find their politics lean heavily toward one party or the other. And Nebraska is no different. It is a very conservative state so it makes sense for it to elect Republicans.But not too long ago Democrats competed for state offices. In fact, Nebraska had at least one Democratic Senator from 1977 until 2012. It’s really only been the last ten years where Democrats could not compete in the state. Of course, the Democrats it elected were about as conservative as many Republicans. But Nebraska also has a history of progressive reforms. In fact, it was often rural America who championed many of the progressive ideas in the early twentieth century. This realization has caused me to go through a variety of different counterfactuals. Like why are rural Americans conservative and urban Americans liberal? Is there a scenario where this is reversed? I’m not looking to rewrite history. I just want to understand how politics change over time. And maybe where it is going next. Because history shows some of the things we take for granted have not always been that way. My guest Ross Benes grew up in Nebraska before moving to New York City. He has the kind of expat perspective that has given so many writers both clarity and insight. His recent book is Rural Rebellion: How Nebraska Became a Republican Stronghold. Ross and I, we discuss why Democrats no longer compete in Nebraska. But I don’t want anyone to think Nebraska has to elect Democrats to prove their commitment to democracy. That’s not the point. Nebraska is one of many states with very little genuine competition between parties for statewide office. My concern is effective governance needs a range of perspectives to succeed. And this problem is not unique to Nebraska nor are many liberal states immune. More InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicOur Body PoliticKey LinksRural Rebellion: How Nebraska Became a Republican Stronghold by Ross BenesFighting Liberal by George NorrisThe Politics of Resentment: Rural Consciousness in Wisconsin and the Rise of Scott Walker by Katherine CramerRelated ContentChad Alan Goldberg on the Wisconsin Idea and the Role of the Public University in a DemocracyJacob Hacker and Paul Pierson on the Plutocratic Populism of the Republican PartyRural Consciousness as Political Identity
They had an obligation to take the knowledge that they were developing, to take their expertise and put it in the service of the community as a whole and the service of its elected leaders.Chad Alan GoldbergA Fulll Transcript is Available at www.democracyparadox.com.At the turn of the twentieth century, Wisconsin was at the forefront of the Progressive Movement. Wisconsin adopted the first modern state income tax. It initiated the first workers’ compensation plan. It enacted the first unemployment insurance program. Wisconsin even spearheaded important constitutional reforms like the direct election of Senators. UW Madison Professor Patrick Brenzel explains, “To say that Wisconsin was known nationally for transparent and egalitarian government is an understatement.”These reforms were the product of a relationship between the public university, legislators, and other stakeholders. It is known as the Wisconsin Idea. The Wisconsin Idea is a belief the public university has a role to contribute its research to the service of the state. A common motto is “The boundaries of the university are the boundaries of the state.” The Wisconsin Idea remains central to the mission of the University of Wisconsin system to this day, but has become the subject of attacks from conservatives in recent years. Among the many efforts by Scott Walker to dismantle the administrative state included an attempt to remove the Wisconsin Idea from the university charter. It failed, but it highlights how there is a genuine debate about the role of public universities. Chad Alan Goldberg has been at the forefront of the effort to defend the Wisconsin Idea in recent years. He is a professor of sociology at the University of Wisconsin Madison and the editor of the volume Education for Democracy: Renewing the Wisconsin Idea. This book features chapters from many leading scholars in a variety of disciplines including Kathy Cramer. Our conversation discusses some of the history behind the Wisconsin Idea. But it is really about the role of the public university. How is a public university different from a private university? Why does the public support universities? And how does a public university help to shape democracy? These are important questions I never thought to ask, but will mean a lot as we work to renew democracy.More InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicPolitics in QuestionKey LinksEducation for Democracy: Renewing the Wisconsin IdeaThe Wisconsin Idea by Charles McCarthyThe Politics of Resentment: Rural Consciousness in Wisconsin and the Rise of Scott Walker by Katherine CramerRelated ContentRyan Salzman is an Evangelist for PlacemakingZizi Papacharissi Dreams of What Comes After DemocracyThoughts on John Dewey's Democracy and Education
The focus on the individual people involved in this moment and their preexisting relationships for me is a new way of thinking about democratic transitions. Because I think we see how much these personal relationships and personal histories matter for whether or not they can make these really big, important decisions at a moment of very high stress, very little information.Elizabeth NugentA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.Elizabeth Nugent believes political polarization derailed Egyptian democratization, while the lack of severe polarization has allowed Tunisian democracy to survive. But what makes her work remarkable is she argues Egyptian polarization was the outcome of targeted repression under authoritarian rule. At the same time, Tunisia avoided polarization because repression was more widespread. Stop and think about this for a moment. Tunisian democracy succeeds today because of a legacy of widespread, indiscriminate repression. It affected everyone so opposition groups learned to work together and even sympathized with one another. This is a truly counterintuitive insight. But it makes so much sense at the same time. Liz Nugent’s new book is After Repression: How Polarization Derails Democratic Transition. She is an assistant professor at Yale University with a focus on Middle Eastern politics. Her book uses the cases of Egypt and Tunisia to explain her ideas, but her thoughts on polarization will make waves as they are used in other contexts. Our conversation discusses Tunisia and Egypt. We also talk about how polarization affects democratization. But I find it most interesting how Liz emphasizes the political process requires real relationships with real people. She reminds us a very human element is necessary for democracy and democratization. More InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all MusicDemocracy in DangerKey LinksElizabeth Nugent's Home PageAfter Repression: How Polarization Derails Democratic TransitionYale MacMillan Center Council on Middle East StudiesRelated ContentThomas Carothers and Andrew O'Donohue are Worried About Severe PolarizationJonathan Pinckney on Civil Resistance TransitionsThoughts on Samuel Huntington's The Third Wave
Like so many things we're coming to grips with now in the 21st century, we're realizing that the 20th century was the anomaly. We feel like what was happening in the first 20 years of the 21st century that that was the anomaly. But it's not. The 20th century was the anomaly. And there's a temptation among policymakers to say, ‘But this is how it's always been.’ No. Wrong.Ryan SalzmanA full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com.I live in Carmel, Indiana and in May The Farmers’ Market opens. It’s in a small public space between a concert hall called The Palladium and the Booth Tarkington Theatre. The Monon Bike Trail runs alongside it and there is bike parking sponsored by the Mayor’s Youth Council. Live bands play in the center of the market. In the winter, the same space is used for an n outdoor ice skating rink surrounded by a German Christkindlmarkt. This is what Ryan Salzman describes as placemaking. Placemaking does not just transform public spaces. It expands them. Placemaking changes how we experience our community and establishes new landmarks. And whether we want to admit it or not, this is political. Placemaking involves the creation and distribution of public goods. Local governments make decisions over whether to embrace or prevent placemaking. For example, teenagers can paint a beautiful mural on a public building. Elected officials will decide whether to send a thank you or a citation. Ryan Salzman has studied the phenomenon of placemaking in his home of Bellevue, Kentucky and in other communities across the United States. He is a professor of political science at Northern Kentucky University and the author of Pop-Up Civics in 21st Century America: Understanding the Political Potential of Placemaking. He has experienced placemaking as an academic, an elected city councilman, and an active participant. Ryan’s work caught my attention because it examines local engagement through a novel lens. It considers political behavior that the participants probably don’t realize is political. It moves beyond theories of deliberative and direct democracy to consider ways everyday citizens produce meaningful action. Ryan and I have a light hearted conversation. But I don’t want to overlook the significant implications of placemaking for political science and political theory. I am excited for Ryan to share his stories and ideas. So it’s about time I introduce you to Ryan Salzman…Key LinksPop-Up Civics in 21st Century America: Understanding the Political Potential of PlacemakingBlack Lives Matter Mural in Cincinnati, OhioArtPlace AmericaRelated ContentZizi Papacharissi Dreams of What Comes After DemocracyCarolyn Hendriks, Selen Ercan and John Boswell on Mending DemocracyThoughts on Robert Putnam's Bowling AloneMore InformationDemocracy GroupApes of the State created all Music
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