Heads of section: Daniel Steinmetz-Jenkins, Wesleyan University and Ferenc Laczo, Maastricht University
This section concentrates on the theories of (re/de) democratization, on the relationship between democracy and liberalism which is at the heart of the current populist crisis of democracy, as well as on the debates surrounding the notion of citizenship.
A Path to Democracy Without Destabilization: Joseph Wong Explains the Types of Development and the Patterns of Uneven Democratization in Modern Asia
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Joseph Wong – co-author with Dan Slater of the new monograph “From Development to Democracy. The Transformations of Modern Asia” – discusses when and why regimes have chosen to democratize in modern Asia; how come types rather than levels of development have shaped countries’ democratic prospects; why Singapore and China remain…
In this conversation with Norman Aselmeyer, Andreas Eckert – author of German-language overviews of the history of colonialism and of slavery – presents his approach to the history of colonialism.
Ambiguous Tests of Loyalty: Franziska Exeler about the Second World War and its Long Shadow in Belarus
In this extended conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Franziska Exeler – author of the new monograph “Ghosts of War: Nazi Occupation and Its Aftermath in Soviet Belarus” – discusses the extremely violent history of Belarus during the Second World War; analyses the various choices people made under the dire constrains of the Nazi German…
In conversation with Francis Fukuyama: “Russia would not have invaded Ukraine if it had been a democracy”
In this interview with Francis Fukuyama, hosted by Laetitia Strauch-Bonart (Editor of the Ideas section in the French weekly L’Express) and Michał Matlak (RevDem Managing Editor), they discuss his latest book, the status of liberal and illiberal democracies in the world today, how this relates to Russia, China, and the US, the threats to American…
What Does Right-Wing Anti-Gender Mobilization Have to Do with Progressive Gender Trends? Eszter Kováts Investigates the Politics of Fidesz and AfD
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Eszter Kováts discusses the conclusions she has drawn from her comparison of the discourse coalitions around AfD in Germany and Fidesz in Hungary.
RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó interviews three authors of the new collective monograph “Socialism Goes Global. The Soviet Union and Eastern Europe in the Age of Decolonization”, Péter Apor, James Mark and Steffi Marung.
Democracies Proved More Successful at Breaking Promises. Fritz Bartel on the End of the Cold War and the Rise of Neoliberalism
RevDem section heads Vera Scepanovic and Ferenc Laczó talk with Fritz Bartel, author of “Triumph of Broken Promises. The End of the Cold War and the Rise of Neoliberalism”.
In this conversation with RevDem editor Kasia Krzyżanowska, Peter Verovšek — author of “Memory and the future of Europe. Rupture and integration in the wake of total war” — discusses the importance of foundational stories for communities; explains the influence of personal experience on the European integration; shows differences in remembering the past in West…
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Charlotte Wiedemann – author of the just released German-language volume Den Schmerz der Anderen begreifen. Holocaust und Weltgedächtnis (To Grasp the Pain of Others. Holocaust and Global Remembrance).
In conversation with Una Blagojević and Iker Itoiz Ciaurriz, Enzo Traverso discusses key themes in his newest book Revolution: An Intellectual History (Verso, 2021).
“Post-War Christian Democracy Was Relatively Short-Lived” Fabio Wolkenstein on the Dark Side of Christian Democratic History and Politics
In this conversation with Ferenc Laczó, Fabio Wolkenstein – author of the new book Die dunkle Seite der Christdemokratie. Geschichte einer autoritaeren Versuchung (The Dark Side of Christian Democracy. The History of an Authoritarian Temptation) – sketches the broad variety of Christian politics across modern Europe.
RevDem Editor Ferenc Laczó reviews Stella Ghervas’ major new monograph Conquering “Peace. From the Enlightenment to the European Union,” a stylishly written, often stimulating, if slightly unusual scholarly monograph. Inspired, among others, by Robert de Traz’s 1936 book De l’alliance des rois à la ligue des peuples, Sainte-Alliance et SDN (From the Alliance of Kings…
Gábor Illés, Research Fellow at the Department for Democracy and Political Theory of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences Centre of Excellence, reviews “The Anatomy of Post-Communist Regimes: A conceptual framework” (CEU Press, 2021) by Bálint Magyar and Bálint Madlovics.
Democracy Depends on Those Who Are Harder to Fool: Daniel Treisman on the Changing Face of Dictatorship
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Daniel Treisman – co-author, with Sergei Guriev, of “Spin Dictators: The Changing Face of Tyranny in the 21st Century” – discusses how ‘spin dictatorships’ differ from ‘fear dictatorships’; why such a new form of dictatorship has emerged and spread in recent decades; what might explain the at…
In this conversation with Bence Bari and Orsolya Sudár, editors Ferenc Laczó and Bálint Varga and contributor Dóra Vargha discuss the new volume “Magyarország globális története, 1869-2022 (A Global History of Hungary, 1869-2022)”. The conversation focuses on some of the innovative questions posed by trying to reconceptualize the history of a Central and Eastern European…
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Jacob Mchangama discusses central ideas of his new monograph “Free Speech: A Global History from Socrates to Social Media”. The conversation reflects on how to write a global history of this subject; contrasts egalitarian and elitist conceptions of free speech; explores facets of the free speech recession…
In this conversation with guest contributor Nikola Pantić, Davide Rodogno discusses his new book Night on Earth: A History of International Humanitarianism in the Near East, 1918-1930 (Cambridge University Press, 2021). The conversation focuses on the reasons why the Middle East became a popular destination for Western humanitarian agencies in the first decades of the…
How to Avoid Further Escalation? A Conversation with Wolfgang Merkel on the Scholz Government and German Foreign Policy Today
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Wolfgang Merkel talks about German foreign policy, describes key decisions and non-decisions of the new German government and reflects on the reasons that led him to sign the Open Letter to Chancellor Scholz.
The ‘New Europe’ Campaign: The Failure of Liberal Internationalism and the Resilience of Imperialism
Historians of the Habsburg Empire and the First World War analyze the fascinating story of Robert William Seton-Watson’s propaganda for the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the creation of a ‘New Europe.’ They historicize ideas concerning the ‘balance of power’, European integration, anti-imperialist liberal internationalism, and the making of the post-Habsburg nation-states in Central…
RevDem Editor László Bence Bari in conversation with Éva Fodor, Professor at the Gender Studies and Pro-Rector of the Central European University about her latest book “The Gender Regime of Anti-Liberal Hungary”. In this book, she argues that the anti-liberal government of Hungary has established a specific kind of gender regime, the ’carefare’ policy which…
Brazilian Intellectuals and the French Social Sciences: Ian Merkel on Writing Anti-Diffusionist Intellectual History
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Ian Merkel discusses why Brazil in the 1930s offered such a precious opportunity to innovate in the social sciences; shows the ways in which Brazilians were crucial interlocutors for French social scientists; explores how the terms of exchange between French and Brazilian scholars evolved over time; and…
Responding to critiques of their op-ed on why the war in Ukraine should not be discussed using the “democracy vs. autocracy” framework, authors Irina Domurath and Stefano Palestini further develop why orienting the discussion around Russia’s abuse of international law could draw more international support and avoid escalation into a Third World War.
In conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Simon Kuper – author of the new book “Chums: How a Tiny Caste of Oxford Tories Took Over the UK” – discusses why Oxford University was so crucial to the formation of the current Tory elite; how this highly influential generational cohort of Tories may be placed into…
In a conversation with our editor Kasia Krzyżanowska, Kacper Pobłocki discusses his recent book Chamstwo and reflects on how Polish society was historically based on violence; elaborates on the historical sources of the name “Cham”; compares Polish predicament with other European states and discusses current state of the academia.
Boyd van Dijk on the Making of the Geneva Conventions: The Most Important Rules Ever Formulated for Armed Conflict
In this conversation with Ferenc Laczó, Boyd van Dijk – author of the new monograph “Preparing for War: The Making of the Geneva Conventions” discusses what makes the Geneva Conventions such defining documents when it comes to formulating rules for armed conflict.
Interrogating the Fantasy and Impact of Displacement: A Conversation with Lorenzo Veracini on Settler Colonialism as a Political Idea
In this conversation, Lorenzo Veracini reflects on key ideas in his new intellectual history of settler colonialism The World Turned Inside Out. He outlines the transnational coherence of the political sensibilities and rhetorical traditions of settler colonialism and shows how attention to ideas and practices of displacement might help us make sense of the historical…
Realist Thought Between Empire-Building and Restraint: Matthew Specter on Why a Flawed Tradition Endures
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Matthew Specter discusses key concepts and tropes in the language of realism; the comparisons across the Atlantic that have defined the realist tradition over the generations; the broad appeal of this manner of thinking despite its notable intellectual weaknesses; and the more normative elements of his critique.
In this conversation with RevDem assistant editor Vilius Kubekas, Sarah Shortall discusses the history of the nouvelle théologie movement in France and brings into focus the political dimension of theology.
Can they ever win? The past and future prospects for an opposition victory in Hungary’s competitive authoritarian regime
By analyzing the recent parliamentary elections, the authors attempt to answer a key question for Hungary and Europe: is Viktor Orban and his ruling party defeatable?
Gary Gerstle on the Neoliberal Political Order: An Elite Promise of a World of Freedom and Emancipation (Part II)
In part II of this conversation with Gary Gerstle, he discusses opposed moral perspectives and their compatibility with the neoliberal political order; why the neoliberal order used the coercive power of the state to incarcerate millions; and the ways in which we can observe the retreat of neoliberal hegemony today.
In September CEU Democracy Institute and the Review of Democracy held the symposium “The Past and Present of Christian Democracy” where leading scholars discussed the historical significance and contemporary state of Christian Democracy. The first panel was dedicated to Carlo Invernizzi Accetti’s book “What is Christian Democracy? Politics, Religion and Ideology”. The book was discussed…
Gary Gerstle on the Neoliberal Political Order: An Elite Promise of a World of Freedom and Emancipation (Part I)
In this conversation with Ferenc Laczó, Gary Gerstle discusses key questions tackled in his new “The Rise and Fall of the Neoliberal Order: America and the World in the Free Market Era.” Part I covers Gerstle’s interpretation of the longue durée history of liberalism; his encompassing approach to the study of political orders; how the…
Book review: Giuseppe Martinico, Filtering Populist Claims to Fight Populism: The Italian Case in Comparative Perspective (CUP 2021)
Julian Scholtes, a lecturer in EU and Public Law at Newcastle University, reviews “Filtering Populist Claims to Fight Populism: The Italian Case in Comparative Perspective” by Giuseppe Martinico, “a wonderfully written in-depth analysis of the constitutional dimensions of populism in Italy.”
A dictatorship has just brutally attacked its democratic neighbor. It’s not the first time in history that happens, but there are good reasons to see the war in Ukraine as the first one defining the conflict lines of this century.
Mark R. Beissinger: Revolutions have succeeded more often in our time, but their consequences have become more ambiguous
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Mark R. Beissinger introduces his unique global dataset and probabilistic structural approach to revolution; analyzes the prevalent form of revolution in our age he calls “urban civic”; dissects how the consequences of revolution have shifted over time; and reflects on how revolution may be changing again today.
In light of the recent solidifying of what could be named as ‘populist international’, we are opening a conversation on one of the first areas and people that were targeted: history and historians. Populist regimes and their supporters feed themselves on historical myths, distortions and subversion of the public debate on historical themes.
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Peter Osnos discusses his new edited volume “George Soros: A Life in Full”.
In this conversation with RevDem assistant editor Vilius Kubekas, Joshua L. Cherniss discusses the central role ethical commitment played in twentieth-century liberalism.
A conversation with Caroline Mezger about her book, “Forging Germans: Youth, Nation and the National Socialist Mobilization of Ethnic Germans in Yugoslavia (1918-1944).”
Simone Weil’s figure poses a challenge to each reader of hers. In this conversation, our editor Kasia Krzyżanowska speaks to prof. Robert Zarestky (professor at the University of Houston), about the heroine of his recently published biography: Simone Weil.
A conversation with Cesare Cuttica, László Kontler, and Clara Maier concerning their recently released volume, “Crisis and Renewal in the History of European Political Thought.”
In this interview with Maarten Prak, hosted by Karen Culver, they discuss Maarten’s book Citizens without Nations: Urban Citizenship in Europe and the World c. 1000-1789. Maarten comments on how citizenship functioned in medieval and early modern Europe; why the term “urban governance” is preferable to “urban democracy”; how accessible guilds were at this time, and more.
Dunstan: Black thinkers have contested the principles of democracy in ways that are central to the experience of these democracies
Sarah Dunstan in conversation with Ferenc Laczó talks about her new monograph “Race, Rights and Reform”, maps the landscape of Black activist thought across the French Empire and the United States from World War One to the Cold War; shows how gender operated in tandem with the dynamics of race and class; underlines how the end of empire connected…
The competitive element in competitive authoritarianism is still very pertinent. Dimitar Bechev on Turkey Under Erdogan
Dimitar Bechev in conversation with Ferenc Laczó discusses the current shape of the Turkish political system.
Andrea Pető in conversation with Marlene Laruelle about illiberalism studies, whether Russia is fascist, the nature of Russia’s illiberalism, as well as its conservative softpower.
Ferenc Laczó discusses with Kiran Klaus Patel his latest book “Europäische Integration. Geschichte und Gegenwart” (European Integration: History and the Present Day).
In this conversation conducted by Vilius Kubekas, Anna von der Goltz discusses her recent book The Other ‘68ers: Student Protest and Christian Democracy in West Germany.
Suzanne Schneider discusses the modernity of new forms of jihad; shows how the Islamic State’s organizational structure, understanding of the law, and spectacular violence reflect broader contemporary trends.
Michał Matlak speaks with Michael Ignatieff about his recent book On Consolation: Finding Solace in Dark Times, the role of religion in the modern world, whether conservative liberalism is possible today, the cancel culture, the (im)possibility of European integration, and much more.
Luka Lisjak Gabrijelčič in conversation with Stefano Bottoni, author of a recent Italian-language book about Viktor Orbán.
In this conversation, hosted by RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Roosevelt Montás discusses his recent book “Rescuing Socrates: How the Great Books Changed My Life and Why They Matter for a New Generation”.
Luka Lisjak Gabrijelčič in conversation with Stefano Bottoni, author of a recent Italian-language book about Viktor Orbán.
In this interview, Agnė Rimkutė discusses with Raquel Varela the importance of seeing the working classes as actors in the historical process and the implications of people’s history for our understanding of democracy.
Melissa Feinberg in a conversation with Ferenc Laczo on Her New Textbook Communism in Eastern Europe
Dirk Moses in the second part of his conversation with Ferenc Laczo on the diplomacy of genocide and the deeply sinister ambitions of permanent security
The Problems of Genocide: Dirk Moses on the Language of Transgression and the Genocide Convention in Context
Dirk Moses in conversation with Ferenc Laczo on his last book “The Problems of Genocide. Permanent Security and the Language of Transgression”.
Marius Turda in conversation with Ferenc Laczo about A Cultural History of Race.
In this interview Laszlo Bruszt, Co-Director of the CEU Democracy Institute and Editor-in-Chief of RevDem, explains the inspiration behind the CEU Democracy Institute and RevDem, how East-West and North-South divisions define Europe, and why the EU confederal regime weakens vulnerable member states.
Professor Dimitry Kochenov in conversation with Michał Matlak explains why he believes citizenship is a “perpetuation of the ideas of aristocracy,” sexism, and racism; what can be done to fix this issue; and what motivated him to write “Citizenship” (MIT Press, 2019).
Emily Greble in conversation with Ferenc Laczo discusses what foregrounding Muslims’ agency implies for the writing of European history; what were key legacies of the Ottoman Empire and how Muslims became a distinct legal minority; in what ways they related to the major political movements of the twentieth century; and how focusing on their experiences…
Bence Bari interviews Tamás Dombos, the representative of the Hungarian LGBTQI organization ‘Háttér Society’ concerning the recently adopted Hungarian anti-LGBT measures, their transnational and historical background with respect to the global dynamics of acceptance, and homophobia between the Western and Eastern hemisphere.
The authors summarize and contextualize the content of the summit to argue that the conference not only provided an opportunity for its participants to address the ‘demographic crisis’ in Europe and the ‘family politics of conservative’ governments,’ but also amounted to an attempt to develop a transnational narrative for such self-declared conservatives that could unite…
In conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Emily Levine (Stanford University) discusses key ideas in her new book “Allies and Rivals: German-American Exchange and the Rise of the Modern Research University”, a transatlantic monograph that draws on extensive historical research and applies sociological theory to study how the academic social contract was repeatedly renegotiated in…
In this wide-ranging conversation occasioned by the release of his The Dream of Europe. Travels in the Twenty-First Century, Geert Mak discusses why he chose to write a sequel to “In Europe. Travels Through the Twentieth Century”.
In this conversation with RevDem editor Ferenc Laczó, Gábor Tóka talks about the Fall 2021 Hungarian opposition primaries
Michal Matlak interviews Zsolt Enyedi about the development of Church-State relations in Hungary, Viktor Orban’s vision of Christian Democracy, why the Democracy Institute plays an important symbolic role in Budapest, and about his recently published book, “Party System Closure: Party Alliances, Government Alternatives, and Democracy in Europe”
Lea Ypi in conversation with Ferenc Laczo about her new memoir “Free: Coming of Age at the End of History” and how the people who populate its pages help her connect historical experiences with philosophical thought; how she experienced and dealt with the rupture of 1990 that forced her to reassess her childhood; how that…
In this podcast, our assistant editor Bence Bari interviews László Kontler, the research affiliate of the CEU Democracy Institute’s History workgroup project, titled “History as Democracy.”
Ferenc Laczó in conversation with Kati Marton about her biography of Angela Merkel. The conversation focuses on Kati Marton’s motivation to paint a human portrait of Angela Merkel, on Merkel’s personality traits and how they have impacted the style and substance of her political leadership.
Aldo Madariaga discusses his latest book “Neoliberal Resilience: Lessons in Democracy and Development from Latin America and Eastern Europe” with our editor, Giancarlo Grignaschi.
Why is the collective protection of democracy in the Americas doomed to fail? The Inter-American Charter at 20
Stefano Palestini writes about the Inter-American Democratic Charter on the occasion of its 20th anniversary.
Oliver Garner interviews the author on his book ‘Authoritarian Liberalism and the Transformation of Modern Europe’
Gráinne de Búrca, Jan Kubik, Jeffrey Isaac, and Karolina Wigura comment on the new book by Jan Werner Müller. Afterwards the author responds to the commentators.
The Light that Failed: A Reckoning fails to deliver a fresh interpretation which would venture beyond the traditional liberal mantra. It is a representation of the contemporary deadlock of Western liberalism.
Vilius Kubekas in conversation. with the author of the book “What is Christian Democracy? Politics, Religion and Ideology”.
Will the EU survive the rise of democratorships within? Karolewski and Leggewie on the new quality of politics in the Visegrád states
Ireneusz Paweł Karolewski on the new quality of politics in the Visegrád states.
Our editor Ferenc Laczo interviews Jonathan Hoslag (Free University Brussels) on his book “World Politics Since 1989” (Polity Press).
RevDem editor Ferenc Laczo interviews LaTosha Brown, co-founder of the voting rights group Black Voters Matter.
RevDem editor Ferenc Laczo interviewed historian Konrad H. Jarausch, Lurcy Professor of European Civilization at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, about his latest book Embattled Europe: A Progressive Alternative, a rich and finely balanced portrait of contemporary Europe.
Wolfgang Merkel in his op-Ed analyses three aspects of democracy crises: scientistation, moralisation and polarisation.
Ferenc Laczo in conversation with Samuel Moyn (Yale University) about his book “Humane. How the United States Abandoned Peace and Reinvented War”.
Artur Domoslawski, the author of a monumental Zygmunt Bauman’s biography in conversation with our managing editor, Michał Matlak
Ferenc Laczo talks with Jennifer Evans (Carleton University) about the new Holocaust memory debate.
How can we employ technology to facilitate the democratic process? Which platforms are more democratic than others? These and more questions are answered by Kevin Esterling, Professor of Political Science and Public Policy at the University of California in a conversation with the RevDem assistant editor, Catherine Wright.
Ferenc Laczo discusses with Mira Siegelberg her latest book “Statelessness”, the story of a much-contested legal category.
Elias Buchetmann talks to Till van Rahden about his latest book Demoracy: A Fragile Way of Life, which focuses on the history of democracy in the Federal Republic of Germany and raises fundamental questions about the nature of democracy around the world.
Ferenc Laczo reviews “After the Fall. Being American in the World We’ve Made” by Ben Rhodes.
Ferenc Laczó spoke to Stephen Wertheim about his new book, Tomorrow, the World: The Birth of US Global Diplomacy. The book explores the moment in which the US decided to lead the post-war world.
Daniel Steinmetz-Jenkins and Ferenc Laczo discuss with Martin Conway his latest book “Western Europe’s Democratic Age,1945-1968”. You can listen to the podcast or read the edited transcript below.
RevDem Editor Ferenc Laczo is discussing the book “Planet on Fire. A Manifesto for the Age of Environmental Breakdown” by Mathew Lawrence and Laurie Laybourn-Langton with its authors.