In this Book

  • Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism - New Edition
  • Book
  • Sheldon S. Wolin With a new introduction by Chris Hedges
  • 2017
  • Published by: Princeton University Press
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summary

Democracy is struggling in America--by now this statement is almost cliché. But what if the country is no longer a democracy at all? In Democracy Incorporated, Sheldon Wolin considers the unthinkable: has America unwittingly morphed into a new and strange kind of political hybrid, one where economic and state powers are conjoined and virtually unbridled? Can the nation check its descent into what the author terms "inverted totalitarianism"?


Wolin portrays a country where citizens are politically uninterested and submissive--and where elites are eager to keep them that way. At best the nation has become a "managed democracy" where the public is shepherded, not sovereign. At worst it is a place where corporate power no longer answers to state controls. Wolin makes clear that today's America is in no way morally or politically comparable to totalitarian states like Nazi Germany, yet he warns that unchecked economic power risks verging on total power and has its own unnerving pathologies. Wolin examines the myths and mythmaking that justify today's politics, the quest for an ever-expanding economy, and the perverse attractions of an endless war on terror. He argues passionately that democracy's best hope lies in citizens themselves learning anew to exercise power at the local level.



Democracy Incorporated is one of the most worrying diagnoses of America's political ills to emerge in decades. It is sure to be a lightning rod for political debate for years to come. Now with a new introduction by Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Chris Hedges, Democracy Incorporated remains an essential work for understanding the state of democracy in America.

Table of Contents

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  1. Cover
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  1. Title, Copyright, Dedication
  2. pp. i-vi
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Preface to the First Paperback Edition
  2. pp. ix-xvi
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. xvii-xxiv
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. xxv-xxvi
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  1. Introduction to the 2017 Edition
  2. Chris Hedges
  3. pp. xxvii-xxxviii
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  1. Preview
  2. pp. 1-3
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  1. 1 Myth in the Making
  2. pp. 4-14
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  1. 2 Totalitarianism’s Inversion: Beginnings of the Imaginary of a Permanent Global War
  2. pp. 15-40
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  1. 3 Totalitarianism’s Inversion, Democracy’s Perversion
  2. pp. 41-68
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  1. 4 The New World of Terror
  2. pp. 69-81
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  1. 5 The Utopian Theory of Superpower: The Official Version
  2. pp. 82-94
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  1. 6 The Dynamics of Transformation
  2. pp. 95-113
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  1. 7 The Dynamics of the Archaic
  2. pp. 114-130
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  1. 8 The Politics of Superpower: Managed Democracy
  2. pp. 131-158
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  1. 9 Intellectual Elites against Democracy
  2. pp. 159-183
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  1. 10 Domestic Politics in the Era of Superpower and Empire
  2. pp. 184-210
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  1. 11 Inverted Totalitarianism: Antecedents and Precedents
  2. pp. 211-237
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  1. 12 Demotic Moments
  2. pp. 238-258
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  1. 13 Democracy’s Prospects: Looking Backwards
  2. pp. 259-292
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 293-338
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 339-356
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