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The Decline and Rise of Democracy


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About the Author

David Stasavage is dean for the social sciences and Julius Silver Professor of Politics at New York University. His books include Taxing the Rich and States of Credit (both Princeton). Twitter @stasavage


"A fascinating voyage through time and place."---Pierre Lemieux, Regulation
"A bracing stringency is one of the virtues of The Decline and Rise of Democracy. It sweeps across the globe in command of recent scholarship. . . . It shows how complex democracy's patterns are and, on the evidence, how simpler accounts of its past and prospects stumble." * The Economist *
"Democracy is a naturally occurring condition in humanity societies. This single idea sets Stasavage apart from so many theorists who look to the past."---Justin Kempf, Democracy Paradox

Stasavage makes the compelling case that democracy-the desire to have agency and restrain power from above-is a deeply human instinct. . . . In his telling of the journey from early democracy to its modern founding, Stasavage expands our vision and reminds us that deep desire for control over our lives is a profoundly human instinct that is not particular to one group, one religion, or one civilization.

"---David Muir, The American Interest
"A rich and coherent account of democracy's evolution over millennia and across diverse geographical and environmental settings, "a deep history". . . . This volume helps us look into the future, and one might be unsettled by what can be seen."---Varghese K. George, The Hindu
"I opened The Decline and Rise of Democracy: A Global History from Antiquity to Today, by David Stasavage (Princeton, 2020), hoping to find insights on the prospects for democracy in Russia, and China. And so I did. I closed the book with a better understanding of American democracy as well."---David Warsh, Economic Principals

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