S05E02: The Fragili­ty of US Democ­ra­cy and the Gen­uine Threat of Fas­cism it Faces

The U.S. is in the midst of an ongo­ing coup, there is a real threat of fas­cist ten­den­cies in the U.S. and else­where; these influ­ence the pos­si­ble out­comes of the upcom­ing 2022 mid-term elec­tions as well as the 2024 U.S pres­i­den­tial elec­tions. What are the poten­tial­ly dev­as­tat­ing con­se­quences of legal action or rather inac­tion fol­low­ing from the Jan­u­ary 6th com­mit­tee? How frag­ile is Amer­i­can democ­ra­cy today, and can chang­ing per­cep­tions of account­abil­i­ty lead to irre­versible trans­for­ma­tions in the polit­i­cal and legal struc­ture, poten­tial­ly even dis­man­tling insti­tu­tion­al checks and bal­ances in the Unit­ed States? What role does an increas­ing­ly par­ti­san Supreme Court play in these process­es? How can the his­tor­i­cal­ly unprece­dent­ed dilem­ma of the choice between the con­sti­tu­tion­al­ly guar­an­teed sep­a­ra­tion and inde­pen­dence of the judi­cia­ry, and the sov­er­eign will of demo­c­ra­t­ic pop­u­lar majori­ties be resolved? What are the prospects of resis­tance to the threat of fas­cism, not just in the Unit­ed States, but also glob­al­ly, espe­cial­ly in the wake of Rus­si­a’s con­tin­u­ing war of aggres­sion against Ukraine?

Guests fea­tured in this episode 

Jason Stan­ley; Pro­fes­sor of Phi­los­o­phy at Yale Uni­ver­si­ty, and  author of five mono­graphs, includ­ing, most recent­ly, the acclaimed How Pro­pa­gan­da Works and How Fas­cism Works. Jason is also a renowned pub­lic intel­lec­tu­al who has writ­ten exten­sive­ly on fas­cism, author­i­tar­i­an­ism, pro­pa­gan­da, free speech, crit­i­cal race the­o­ry, and mass incar­cer­a­tion for The New York Times, The Wash­ing­ton Post, The Guardian, Project Syn­di­cate, or The Chron­i­cle of High­er Edu­ca­tion. He appears reg­u­lar­ly on CNN, NBC, CBS, or Democ­ra­cy Now, and has been con­sult­ed by the Jan­u­ary 6 Com­mit­tee of the US Congress.


Shalini Randeria

Shalini Randeria is Rector and President of the Central European University (Vienna/Budapest). Before, she was Professor of Social Anthropology and Sociology at the Graduate Institute Geneva, and Rector of the Institute of Human Sciences (IWM) in Vienna from 2014 to 2021. She has published widely on the anthropology of globalisation, law, the state and social movements. Her empirical research on India also addresses issues of post-coloniality and multiple modernities.