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Larry Diamond’s Greatest Hits

Larry Diamond, the leading scholar of democracy, helped to found the Journal of Democracy more than 32 years ago. “Democracy’s Arc: From Resurgent to Imperiled,” published on the eve of the war in Ukraine, was his final essay as our coeditor. But Larry penned numerous pieces for the Journal. Ten of these landmark essays are now freely available for a limited time. Read them before time runs out!

  1. Three Paradoxes of Democracy,” Summer 1990 — While democracy is the most admired form of government, maintaining it requires contending with its contradictions
  2. Rethinking Civil Society: Toward Democratic Consolidation,” July 1994 — What makes civil society best able to help democracy emerge and endure?
  3. Is the Third Wave Over?,” July 1996 — Democracy’s global advance is facing headwinds, but there are still opportunities for progress in pseudodemocratic and authoritarian states.
  4. Elections Without Democracy: Thinking About Hybrid Regimes,” April 2002 — Many countries have adopted the semblance of democracy with little of its substance. The task of classifying regimes is now more difficult—and more essential.
  5. The Quality of Democracy: An Overview(with Leonardo Morlino), October 2004 — What makes democracy “good” or “better,” and how can we both measure and encourage progress?
  6. Liberation Technology,” July 2010 — The latest communications innovations enable citizens to express opinions, mobilize protests, and expand freedom. But autocrats are learning to master these technologies, too. Whether democracy prevails will depend not just on technology, but on organization and strategy.
  7. The Impact of the Economic Crisis: Why Democracies Survive,” January 2011 — The world’s emerging democracies are weathering the global economic crisis. Yet an even sharper threat remains: their failures to deliver good governance.
  8. Facing Up to the Democratic Recession,” January 2015 — Democracy has been in a long-term global recession. Committed and resourceful engagement by established democracies is necessary to reverse the trend.
  9. The Road to Digital Unfreedom: The Threat of Postmodern Totalitarianism,” January 2019 — Democrats worldwide are in a race against time to prevent cyberspace from becoming an arena for surveillance, control, and manipulation.
  10. Breaking Out of the Democratic Slump,” January 2020 — There is still an opportunity to pull the world out of its democratic slump. What is most needed is democratic conviction and resolve.

A Global Turning Point for Democracy? A Conversation with Larry Diamond

Watch Journal coeditors Will Dobson and Tarek Masoud join former coeditor Larry Diamond to discuss the future of democracy.