Surviving Autocracy | Granta

  • Published: 02/07/2020
  • ISBN: 9781783786763
  • Granta Books
  • 272 pages

Surviving Autocracy

Masha Gessen

‘An indispensable voice of and for this moment’ Timothy Snyder, author of On Tyranny

Since Trump’s inauguration in 2016, a new mantra has taken hold: ‘this isn’t normal’. And in Trump’s response to Covid-19, we have witnessed the extreme consequences of his presidency, and of a government at war with itself. In this searing analysis of the Trump administration, acclaimed New Yorker journalist and prizewinning author Masha Gessen provides an indispensible overview of the calamitous trajectory of the past few years, and proposes a new understanding of Trumpism and the way it has transformed and endangered American society.

Drawing on two decades covering the resurgence of totalitarianism in Russia, Gessen links together seemingly disparate elements of Trump’s regime to offer a roadmap to his 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, Gessen posits that America is in the throes of an autocratic takeover.

As other world leaders queue up to take pages straight out of Trump’s playbook, Gessen’s penetrating analysis of his misdeeds explains why and how he is degrading our politics, our institutions, and our language, and what we, our political representatives, and our media can do to stop him – and those who seek to imitate him.

Urgent

‘50 brilliant books to transport you this summer’, Guardian

Journalistic, in the best way: [Surviving Autocracy] tells stories... We have been warned

Financial Times

Impassioned... a fabulous, furious blast of a book -short, sharp and very much to the point... Bracing

Spectator

The Author

Masha Gessen is a staff writer at the New Yorker and the author of several books, among them the National Book Award-winning The Future is History and the Samuel Johnson prize-longlisted The Man Without a Face. The recipient of numerous other awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and a Carnegie Fellowship, Gessen lives in New York City.

More about the author →

From the Same Author

Masha Gessen on Granta.com

Essays & Memoir | The Online Edition

Surviving Autocracy

Masha Gessen

We knew Trump’s range: government by gesture; obfuscation and lying; self-praise; stoking fear and issuing threats.

Essays & Memoir | The Online Edition

Mutations

Masha Gessen

‘With a disease as unpredictable as cancer, the opportunity to blame an actual person is an unexpected temptation.’