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Assaults on democracy are increasingly coming from the actions of duly elected governments, rather than coups. Backsliding examines the processes through which elected rulers weaken checks on executive power, curtail political and civil liberties, and undermine the integrity of the electoral system. Drawing on detailed case studies, including the United States and countries in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Africa, the book focuses on three, inter-related causal mechanisms: the pernicious effects of polarization; realignments of party systems that enable elected autocrats to gain legislative power; and the incremental nature of derogations, which divides oppositions and keeps them off balance. A concluding chapter looks at the international context of backsliding and the role of new technologies in these processes. An online appendix provides detailed accounts of backsliding in sixteen country cases.
The purpose of this book is straightforward: to remedy this lacuna by providing an introduction to the international relations of Asia looked at over a longue duree: from the seventh century through 1900, when contact with the West finally destroyed the old order. We seek to offer an accessible overview of the evolution of the East Asian international system through what might be called the “early Westphalian” history of the region, which we date to the nineteenth century. The broader purpose is not just didactic. Rather, we also want to force a consideration of the implications of these cases for international relations theory. Long understudied by mainstream international relations scholars, the East Asian historical experience provides an enormous wealth of new and different cases which promise to enrich a theoretical literature largely derived from the Western experience.
This innovative volume provides an introduction to twelve seminal events in the international relations of East Asia prior to 1900: twelve events that everyone interested in the history of world politics should know. The East Asian historical experience provides a wealth of new and different cases, patterns, and findings that will expand horizons from the Western, Eurocentric experience. Written by an international team of historians and political scientists, these essays draw attention to the China-centered East Asian order – with its long history of dominance – and what this order might tell us about the current epoch.
We explore what can be learned from authoritarian backsliding in middle income countries about the threats to American democracy posed by the election of Donald Trump. We develop some causal hunches and an empirical baseline by considering the rise of elected autocrats in Venezuela, Turkey, and Hungary. Although American political institutions may forestall a reversion to electoral autocracy, we see some striking parallels in terms of democratic dysfunction, polarization, the nature of autocratic appeals, and the processes through which autocratic incumbents sought to exploit elected office. These processes could generate a diminished democratic system in which electoral competition survives, but within a political space that is narrowed by weakened horizontal checks on executive power and rule of law.
The concept of the developmental state emerged to explain the rapid growth of a number of countries in East Asia in the postwar period. Yet the developmental state literature also offered a theoretical approach to growth that was heterodox with respect to prevailing approaches in both economics and political science. Arguing for the distinctive features of developmental states, its proponents emphasized the role of government intervention and industrial policy as well as the significance of strong states and particular social coalitions. This literature blossomed into a wider approach, firmly planted in a much longer heterodox tradition, that explored comparisons with states that were decidedly not developmentalist, thus contributing to our historical understanding of long-run growth. This Element provides a critical but sympathetic overview of this literature and ends with its revival and a look forward at the possibility for developmentalist approaches, both in the advanced and developing world.
Chalmers Johnson's (1982) MITI and the Japanese Miracle rests on a big empirical puzzle – Japan's extraordinarily rapid growth – and two core claims that have driven the surprisingly resilient research program on the developmental state ever since. The first is that Japan's high postwar growth could be traced to industrial policies that differed from both the “plan ideological” systems of state socialism and the “regulatory state” of Anglo-Saxon capitalism. This branch of the research program attracted by far the most attention because it directly challenged liberal orthodoxy in the economics profession and development policy community. Led by outsiders to that community – Johnson, Alice Amsden (1989), Robert Wade (Wade 1990, 2004; White and Wade 1984), and Ha-Joon Chang (1994) – this line of thinking was subsequently brought into the economic mainstream by economists such as Dani Rodrik (1995) and Joseph Stiglitz (2001), who reiterated the microeconomic logic of state intervention.
The second strand of the developmental state approach probed the political foundations of rapid growth. Industrial policy in the developing world was ubiquitous, but not ubiquitously successful. What accounted for successful industrial policies and the institutions capable of conducting them in the first place? The developmental state literature is typically identified with an institutionalist approach to politics, focusing on the autonomy or insulation of the government from rent-seeking private interests, delegation to lead agencies, and coherent bureaucracies. But Johnson was acutely aware of the centrality of business-government relations to the Japanese model, and subsequent contributions by Peter Evans (1989, 1995) refocused debate on the social foundations of rapid growth.
This second face of the developmental state research agenda developed a particularly strong comparative-historical component. The literature gradually moved beyond Japan and the paradigmatic Northeast Asian cases of Korea and Taiwan to the rapidly growing countries of Southeast Asia and to comparator cases that were distinctly “non-developmental.” This comparative historical research agenda sought to identify the historical sources of development and underdevelopment through close consideration of a small number of cases.