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Publisher's Summary

With the end of the Cold War, the victory of liberal democracy was thought to be absolute. Observers declared the end of history, confident in a peaceful, globalized future. But we now know this to be premature. Authoritarianism first returned in Russia, as Putin developed a political system dedicated solely to the consolidation and exercise of power. In the last six years, it has creeped from east to west as nationalism inflames Europe, abetted by Russian propaganda and cyberwarfare. While countries like Poland and Hungary have made hard turns toward authoritarianism, the electoral upsets of 2016 revealed the citizens of the US and UK in revolt against their countries' longstanding policies and values.
But this threat to the West also presents the opportunity to better understand the pillars of our own political order. In this forceful and unsparing work of contemporary history, Snyder goes beyond the headlines to expose the true nature of the threat to democracy. By showcasing the stark choices before us - between equality or oligarchy, individuality or totality, truth and falsehood - Snyder restores our understanding of the basis of our way of life, offering a way forward in a time of terrible uncertainty.
©2018 Timothy Snyder (P)2018 Random House Audio
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Richard Keohane on 04-08-18

A Key Understanding of Modern Politics

Would you consider the audio edition of The Road to Unfreedom to be better than the print version?

The Road to Unfreedom is a dense text, delving with deliberate action into history, philosophy, and politics. Listening can be mentally less taxing than reading.

What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

The book gives a comprehensive understanding of political narratives, and which ones are enticing but hollow and which ones aren't sexy but enrich nations and their citizens. It made me reconsider many of my political beliefs.

Which scene was your favorite?

The division of Identity Politics vs. Prosperity Politics made me rethink how I vote.

If you could give The Road to Unfreedom a new subtitle, what would it be?

The War Between Politicians Who Talk About Cultural Identity, Vs. Politicians Who Say What Can Be Done For Those They Represent

Any additional comments?

A must-read for those who wish to be informed about modern politics.

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5 of 6 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars
By International Roamer on 04-21-18

Huge Disappointment

Being a big fan of Timothy Snyder’s book Bloodlands and someone who enjoys studying Russia, I really looked forward to listening to The Road to Unfreedom. I could hardly get through his many premises in the introduction including his belief that President Trump colluded with the Russians. I tried to listen to the first chapter to hear another point of view, but simply couldn’t stomach his many conjectures that he asserted as fact, rather than theory. Depending on ones political bent, this is a love it or hate it book. I’m afraid I fall into the latter category. Two thumbs down.

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