This course offers an introduction into the fundamental logic of authoritarian politics. The main goal of the course is to develop a deeper understanding of how autocracies work internally and how they interact with the international arena. Taking a rational perspective, we analyze the key actors, strategies, and effects of authoritarian rule from the 20th century to the present day. Based on cutting-edge research, the course engages with questions such as: How do authoritarian regimes arise? Why do some dictatorships survive for decades, and others do not? How do dictators deal with the dual threat of revolution and coup? When do regimes use repression and why would they refrain from it? How do dictators censor and what is the effect? How do dictators manipulate public opinion abroad? And how can the liberal state community counteract democratic backsliding tendencies, restrictions on civil liberties, and human rights violations?
This course is for 2nd year MIA, MPP and MDS students only.