October, 1 — Regular Seminar
Topic: “A Cultural Theory of Autocracy-vs-Democracy”
Speaker: Christian Welzel (Laboratory for Comprartive Social Research, Russia; Leuphana University of Lüneburg, Germany)
The Laboratory for Comparative Social Research announces the next regular seminar, which will be held as a zoom session on October, 1 at 16-30 p.m. (GMT+3). Christian Welzel (Laboratory for Comprartive Social Research, Russia; Leuphana University of Lüneburg, Germany) will deliver a report “A Cultural Theory of Autocracy-vs-Democracy”.
A link to zoom session is available upon request (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Recent accounts of democratic backsliding are negligent about the cultural foundations of autocracy-vs-democracy. To bring culture back in, I demonstrate that (1) the countries’ membership in culture zones explains some 70 percent of the global variation in autocracy-vs-democracy and (2) that this culture-bound variation has remained astoundingly constant over time — in spite of all the trending patterns in the global distribution of regime types over the last 120 years. Furthermore, the explanatory power of culture zones over autocracy-vs-democracy roots in the cultures’ differentiation on “authoritarian-vs-emancipative values.” Against this backdrop, regime change happens as a result of glacially accruing regime-culture misfits — driven by generational value shifts into a pre-dominantly emancipatory direction. Consequently, the backsliding of democracies into authoritarianism is limited to societies in which emancipative values remain under-developed. Contrary to the widely cited deconsolidation-thesis, the prevalent generational profile in people’s moral orientations exhibits an almost ubiquitous ascension of emancipative values that will lend more, not less, legitimacy to democracy in the future.
Everyone interested is invited!
Working language is English.