🎧 The Shortest History of Democracy
Latest Podcast Episodes 🎧 • 37m
In a time of grave uncertainty about the future of our planet, the radical potential of democracy is more important than ever.
From its beginnings in Syria-Mesopotamia – and not Athens – to its role in fomenting revolutionary fervour in France and America, democracy has subverted fixed ways of deciding who should enjoy power and privilege, and why. Democracy encourages people to do something radical: to come together as equals, to determine their own lives and futures.
In this vigorous, illuminating history, acclaimed political thinker John Keane traces its Byzantine history, from the age of assembly democracy in Athens, to European-inspired electoral democracy and the birth of representative government, to our age of monitory democracy. He gives new reasons why democracy is a precious global ideal and shows that as the world has come to be shaped by democracy, it has grown more worldly – American-style liberal democracy is giving way to regional varieties with a local character in places such as Taiwan, India, Senegal and South Africa.
In an age of cascading crises, we need the radical potential of democracy more than ever. Does it have a future, or will the demagogues and despots win? We are about to find out.
Produced by Hannah Ward
Mixed and Mastered by Dougal Patmore
Up Next in Latest Podcast Episodes 🎧
🎧 The Western Front at Dig Hill 80 wi...
Dan goes to an excavation that's happening now of a World War One fortification near the Belgian village of Wijtschate. He talks to the archaeologists and historians and anthropologists at work at the incredibly preserved, hotly contested ridge, before it is lost forever to the bulldozers later t...
🎧 Cryonics: Living Forever?
Cryonics is the speculative practice of preserving and storing recently dead bodies at very low temperatures, in the hopes we may one day be able to bring them back to life.
Crucially, the technology to execute that final step, reanimation, doesn't exist. At least not yet. Individuals who sign u...
The Medieval Bishop's Sex Workers
Outside Medieval London’s city walls, Southwark was a land without rules. It was the place where people went to partake in theatre, watch bear baiting and visit brothels. It was also under the control of the Bishop of Winchester.
Kate is joined Betwixt the Sheets by Matt Lewis from History Hit’s...