Democracy Paradox
Democracy Paradox
May 18, 2021
Kurt Weyland Distinguishes Between Fascism and Authoritarianism
Play • 54 min

In the 19th century Europe had thought that they had moved towards liberalism, enlightenment, rationality, progress, that stuff like mass warfare was over and it wouldn't come back. And then you have four years of senseless, mass slaughter, they just totally destroyed or challenged those ideas of humankind getting better off, progress of humankind getting more civilized. In retrospect, it's hard to imagine the coincidence of deep challenges and crises that wrecked the interwar years.

Kurt Weyland

A full transcript is available at

Key Highlights Include

  • Kurt clarifies the concept of totalitarian fascism from conservative authoritarianism
  • A description of the political environment of the interwar period
  • Why did authoritarians disliked communism and fascism?
  • Why did fascism emerge during this period?
  • Is there a parallel between the interwar period to today?

Kurt Weyland is a professor of political science at the University of Texas at Austin and the author of the new book Assault on Democracy: Communism, Fascism, and Authoritarianism During the Interwar Years.

Key Links

Assault on Democracy: Communism, Fascism, and Authoritarianism During the Interwar Years by Kurt Weyland

"The Real Lessons of the Interwar Years" by Agnes Cornell, Jørgen Møller, Svend-Erik Skaaning in Journal of Democracy, July 2017

Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation by Juan J. Linz and Alfred Stepan

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Agnes Cornell and Svend-Erik Skaaning on the Interwar Period

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