Democracy Works: When Four Threats To Democracy Collide

Nov 9, 2020

Robert Lieberman
Credit Johns Hopkins University

We hear a lot these days about how democracy is under attack, but what does that really mean? Robert Lieberman is the perfect guest to help us unpack that question and discuss what we can do about it.

Lieberman is co-author with Suzanne Mettler of the book "Four Threats: The Recurring Crises of American Democracy." He is the Krieger-Eisenhower Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University.

Political polarization, racism and nativism, economic inequality, and excessive executive power—alone or in combination—have threatened the survival of the republic, but it has survived—so far. What is unique, and alarming, about the present moment in American politics is that all four conditions exist.

By revisiting how earlier generations of Americans faced threats to the principles enshrined in the Constitution, Lieberman sees the promise and the peril that have led us to today and, in this conversation, we chart a path toward repairing our civic fabric and renewing democracy.