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History As It Happens

Jan 30, 2024

We might need a new lexicon to describe the threats to liberal democracy. At a time when some notable scholars are referencing the 1930s -- the decade of Hitler and Mussolini -- to argue that Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, to name two, are fascists, historian Roger Griffin contends fascism is too malleable and unhelpful a concept. Today's autocrats and wannabe authoritarians do not fit into a single category or share the same political ideology. Rather, Griffin argues, nationalistic leaders, many of them democratically elected, are rejecting liberalism and humanism by bending their nation-states in on themselves. What should we call this? Incurvation.