Many of us are consumed by news cycles reporting on Trump’s latest astonishing policy or declaration, and the overwhelming sense we have is one of confusion and incredulity – how could this be happening?
As the 2020 US Presidential race takes shape, Surviving Autocracy provides an indispensable overview of the calamitous trajectory of the past few years. Drawing on her Soviet childhood and two decades covering the resurgence of totalitarianism in Russia, acclaimed New Yorker journalist and prize-winning author Masha Gessen links together seemingly disparate elements of Trump’s regime to offer a roadmap for understanding Trump’s approach, policies and ultimate aims. Highlighting an inventory of ravages to liberal democracy, including the corrosion of the media, the justice system and cultural norms, she posits that America is in the throws of an autocratic attempt.
Gessen’s penetrating analysis offers a new political discourse to replace that which has been so thoroughly degraded, and with it, a clearer path to action. Manifesto-like, Surviving Autocracy is threaded with solutions to the current situation, such as developing a political language that encompasses autocratic impulses, a more agile and honest media, and a visionary moral politics to counter Trump’s extraordinary ongoing assault.