Brian Klaas of the London School of Economics believes in the transformative power of democracy. In this comprehensive book, he offers prescriptions for Western powers seeking to spread political freedom and critiques many of the halfhearted pro-democracy efforts of recent decades. The United States’ recent misadventures in Iraq and Afghanistan chastened many who once espoused nation-building. But Klaas argues ceasing to promote democracy is a mistake. In addition to offering insights and examples gleaned from his global travels to investigate pseudo-democracies, Klaas also explores America itself, taking the US tradition of gerrymandering to task. At times, Klaas’s crusade seems a bit too idealistic, but, ultimately, he makes a passionate and persuasive case for trying to expand democracy’s shrinking reach.
In this summary, you will learn
- Why democracy's spread stalled,
- How the United States and other Western powers play a role in democracy’s decline and
- How the West can promote democracy effectively.
About the Author
Brian Klaas is a fellow in comparative politics at the London School of Economics. A native of Minnesota, he received his doctorate from the University of Oxford.