POL 148B — Seminar: Dynamics of Dictatorship: Authoritarian Politics in the 20th and 21st Centuries

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Prerequisite: POL 11b.

Despite the world-wide advance of democratization over the past half century, authoritarian regimes continue to govern the vast majority of humanity around the world. Dynamics of Dictatorship aims to provide an analytic grounding in the logic and dynamics of authoritarian politics. What are the different flavors of authoritarian rule? How do authoritarian regimes sustain their control over society? Why do most people obey? How and when do people resist? Has technological advance enhanced the power of authoritarian regimes? What role do international forces play in authoritarian regime survival? When do authoritarian regimes collapse? This course will explore leading theoretical research on authoritarian politics and it will ground that theory in historical and contemporary cases of authoritarian rule found in Russia, Germany, Venezuela, Chile, China, Iraq, Syria, North Korea, Zaire, Zimbabwe, and beyond. Usually offered every second year.