100 Books on Democracy

The list of 100 Books on Democracy is really 200 Books on Democracy now. A second list on books from 2019 to today is available below for readers looking for more recent selections. Many of the authors of new books were interviewed on the podcast. Please subscribe to the podcast and support the project with a monthly contribution at Patreon below. 

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100 Books on Democracy

  1. Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson (2005) – Economic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy  
  2. Gerard Alexander (2002) – The Sources of Democratic Consolidation  
  3. Michelle Alexander (2010). The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness  
  4. Gabriel Abraham Almond and Sidney Verba (1963) – The Civic Culture: Political Attitudes and Democracy in Five Nations
  5. David Altman (2010) – Direct Democracy Worldwide
  6. Anne Applebaum (2017) Red Famine: Stalin’s War on Ukraine
  7. Hannah Arendt (1951) – The Origins of Totalitarianism  
  8. Aristotle (BCE) Politics
  9. Irving Babbitt (1924) – Democracy and Leadership  
  10. James Baldwin (1963) – The Fire Next Time  
  11. Mark R. Beissinger (2002) Nationalist Mobilization and the Collapse of the Soviet State  
  12. James Bryce (1921) – Modern Democracies, Vol. 1  
  13. Edmond Burke (1790) Reflections on the Revolution in France
  14. Thomas Carothers (1999) – Aiding Democracy Abroad: The Learning Curve 
  15. Nic Cheeseman, Paul Chaisty, and Timothy Joseph Power (2018) Coalitional Presidentialism in Comparative Perspective Minority Presidents in Multiparty Systems  
  16. Nic Cheeseman and Brian Klaas (2018) How to Rig an Election  
  17. Alexander Cooley and John Heathershaw (2017) Dictators Without Borders: Power and Money in Central Asia
  18. Kathy Cramer (2016) The Politics of Resentment- Rural Consciousness in Wisconsin and the Rise of Scott Walker  
  19. Robert Dahl (1989) – Democracy and its Critics
  20. Robert Dahl (1971) – Polyarchy: Participation and Opposition 
  21. Robert Dahl (1956) – A Preface to Democratic Theory 
  22. Robert Dahl (1998) – On Democracy  
  23. Robert Dahl (1961) – Who Governs? Democracy and Power in the American City  
  24. Patrick Deneen (2018) Why Liberalism Failed.  
  25. Matthew Desmond (2016) Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City
  26. John Dewey (1916) – Democracy and Education  
  27. Larry Diamond (2008) – The Spirit of Democracy: The Struggle to Build Free Societies throughout the World 
  28. Frederick Douglass (1845) – Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave.  
  29. John Dryzek (2000) – Deliberative Democracy and Beyond: Liberals, Critics, Contestations  
  30. James Fishkin (2009) – When the People Speak: Deliberative Democracy & Public Consultation  
  31. Francis Fukuyama (1992) – The End of History and the Last Man 
  32. Francis Fukuyama (2011) – Origins of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution  
  33. Francis Fukuyama (2014) – Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy 
  34. William Galston (2018) – Anti-Pluralism: The Populist Threat to Liberal Democracy 
  35. Masha Gessen (2017) The Future Is History How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia  
  36. Tom Ginsburg (2003) – Judicial Review in New Democracies: Constitutional Courts in Asian Cases 
  37. Tom Ginsburg and Aziz Z. Huq (2018) – How to Save a Constitutional Democracy 
  38. Antonio Gramsci (1971) – Selections from the Prison Notebooks.  
  39. Jürgen Habermas (1962) The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere 
  40. Jürgen Habermas (1992) – Between Facts and Norms: Contributions to a Discourse Theory of Law and Democracy
  41. Jürgen Habermas (1996) – The Inclusion of the Other: Studies in Political Theory  
  42. Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson (2010) Winner-Take-All Politics: How Washington Made the Rich Richer–and Turned Its Back on the Middle Class  
  43. Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay (1788) The Federalist Papers  
  44. Friedrich Hayek (1944) The Road to Serfdom  
  45. Thomas Hobbes (1651) Leviathan
  46. Arlie Russell Hochschild (2016) Strangers in Their Own Land Anger and Mourning on the American Right  
  47. Samuel Huntington (1991) – The Third Wave: Democratization in the Late Twentieth Century 
  48. Yang Jisheng (2012) Tombstone: The Great Chinese Famine, 1958-1962
  49. Michiko Kakutani (2018). The Death of Truth: Notes on Falsehood in the Age of Trump  
  50. Immanuel Kant (1795) Perpetual Peace
  51. Ernesto Laclau (2005). On Populist Reason  
  52. Ryszard Legutko (2016) – The Demon in Democracy: Totalitarian Temptations in Free Societies
  53. Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt (2018) – How Democracies Die 
  54. Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way (2010) Competitive Authoritarianism Hybrid Regimes After the Cold War  
  55. Arend Lijphart (1999, 2012) (2nd Edition) – Patterns of Democracy: Government Forms and Performance in Thirty-Six Countries 
  56. Juan J. Linz and Alfred Stepan (eds.) (4 vols.)  (1978) – The Breakdown of Democratic Regimes 
  57. Juan Linz and Alfred Stepan (1996) – Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation: Southern Europe, South America, and Post-Communist Europe
  58. John Locke (1689) Second Treatise of Government 
  59. Niccolò Machiavelli (1531) Discourses on Livy
  60. C. B. Macpherson (1973) – Democratic Theory: Essays in Retrieval  
  61. Scott Mainwaring (ed.) (2018) Party Systems in Latin America: Institutionalization, Decay, and Collapse 
  62. Seymour Martin Lipset (1960) – Political Man: The Social Bases of Politics
  63. Seymour Martin Lipset (1989) – Continental Divide The Values and Institutions of the United States and Canada 
  64. Michael McFaul (2018) From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin’s Russia
  65. Robert Michels (1911) – Political Parties: A Sociological Study of the Oligarchical Tendencies of Modern Democracies  
  66. Branko Milanovic (2016) Global Inequality: A New Approach for the Age of Globalization 
  67. John Stuart Mill (1861) – Considerations on Representative Government  
  68. John Stuart Mill (1859) On Liberty
  69. Barrington Moore (1966) – Social Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy: Lord and Peasant in the Making of the Modern World 
  70. Chantal Mouffe and Ernesto Laclau (1985) – Hegemony and Socialist Strategy: Towards a Radical Democratic Politics 
  71. Chantal Mouffe (2000) – The Democratic Paradox 
  72. Yascha Mounk (2018) – The People vs. Democracy: Why Our Freedom is in Danger and How to Save it 
  73. Moisés Naím (2013) The End of Power From Boardrooms to Battlefields and Churches to States, Why Being In Charge Isn’t What It Used to Be  
  74. Guillermo O’Donnell (1973) – Modernization and Bureaucratic Authoritarianism: Studies in South American Politics  
  75. Guillermo O’Donnell and Phillippe Schmitter (1986) – Transitions from Authoritarian Rule: Tentative Conclusions about Uncertain Democracies
  76. Thomas Paine (1776) Common Sense
  77. Thomas Piketty (2013) Capital in the Twenty-First Century  
  78. David Pion-Berlin (2016) – Military Missions in Democratic Latin America  
  79. Plato (BCE) The Republic
  80. Karl Popper (1945) The Open Society and its Enemies
  81. Robert Putnam (1995). Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community  
  82. Frances McCall Rosenbluth and Ian Shapiro (2018) – Responsible Parties: Saving Democracy from Itself 
  83. John Rawls (1971) A Theory of Justice  
  84. Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1762) The Social Contract
  85. David Runciman (2018) – How Democracy Ends  
  86. Michael Sandel (1996, 2022) Democracy’s Discontent: America in Search of a Public Philosophy
  87. Giovanni Sartori (1962) – Democratic Theory 
  88. E. E. Schattschneider (1960) – The Semisovereign People: A Realist’s View of Democracy in America 
  89. Carl Schmitt (1922) – The Crisis of Parliamentary Democracy 
  90. Joseph A. Schumpeter (1943) – Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy 
  91. Amartya Sen (1999) Development as Freedom
  92. Timothy D. Snyder (2017) On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century  
  93. Timothy D. Snyder (2018) The Road to Unfreedom: Russia, Europe, America
  94. Thucydides (BCE) History of the Peloponesian War
  95. Alexis De Tocqueville(1835, 1840) – Democracy in America 
  96. Alexis De Tocqueville(1856) The Old Regime and the French Revolution
  97. David Van Reybrouck (2013) – Against Elections: The Case for Democracy  
  98. Michael Walzer (1983) – Spheres of Justice: A Defense Of Pluralism And Equality  
  99. E. B. White (2019) – On Democracy 
  100. Mary Wollstencraft (1792) Vindication of the Rights Women  

100 Books on Democracy Since 2019

  1. Caitlin Andrews-Lee (2021) The Emergence and Revival of Charismatic Movements: Argentine Peronism and Venezuelan Chavismo 
  2. Anne Applebaum (2020) – Twilight of Democracy: The Seductive Lure of Authoritarianism 
  3. Stanislav Aseyev (2022) In Isolation: Dispatches from Occupied Donbas 
  4. Larry Bartels (2023) Democracy Erodes from the Top: Leaders, Citizens, and the Challenge of Populism in Europe 
  5. Mark Beissinger (2022) The Revolutionary City: Urbanization and the Global Transformation of Rebellion
  6. Sheri Berman (2019) – Democracy and Dictatorship in Europe: From the Ancien Régime to the Present Day  
  7. Chris Bickerton and Carlo Invernizzi Accetti (2021) – Technopopulism The New Logic of Democratic Politics  
  8. Derek Black (2020) – Schoolhouse Burning: Public Education and the Assault on American Democracy  
  9. Daniel M. Brinks, Steven Levitsky, and María Victoria Murillo (2020) The Politics of Institutional Weakness in Latin America  
  10. Thomas Carothers and Andrew O’Donohue (2019) – Democracies Divided: The Global Challenge of Political Polarization  
  11. Daniel Carpenter (2021) – Democracy by Petition: Popular Politics in Transformation, 1790–1870 
  12. Erica Chenoweth (2021) Civil Resistance: What Everyone Needs to Know  
  13. Martin Conway (2020) Western Europe’s Democratic Age: 1945–1968  
  14. Alexander Cooley and Daniel Nexon (2020) Exit from Hegemony: The Unraveling of the American Global Order
  15. Michael Coppedge, Amanda B. Edgell, Carl Henrik Knutsen, Staffan I. Lindberg Why Democracies Develop and Decline
  16. Agnes Cornell, Jørgen Møller, and Svend-Erik Skaaning (2020) – Democratic Stability in an Age of Crisis: Reassessing the Interwar Period  
  17. Angus Deaton and Anne Case (2020) Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism  
  18. Ronald J. Deibert (2020)  Reset: Reclaiming the Internet for Civil Society  
  19. Larry Diamond (2019) – Ill Winds: Saving Democracy from Russian Rage, Chinese Ambition, and American Complacency. 
  20. Lisa Jane Disch (2021) Making Constituencies Representation as Mobilization in Mass Democracy.  
  21. Lee Drutman (2020) – Breaking the Two-Party Doom Loop: The Case for Multiparty Democracy in America  
  22. Kevin Duong (2020) – The Virtues of Violence: Democracy Against Disintegration in Modern France  
  23. Grzegorz Ekiert, Elizabeth J. Perry, and Xiaojun Yan (2020) Ruling by Other Means : State-Mobilized Movements  
  24. Joseph Fishkin and William E. Forbath (2022) The Anti-Oligarchy Constitution Reconstructing the Economic Foundations of American Democracy.  
  25. Abel Escribà-Folch, Covadonga Meseguer Yebra, and Joseph Wright (2022) Migration and Democracy: How Remittances Undermine Dictatorships  
  26. Timothy Frye (2021) Weak Strongman: The Limits of Power in Putin’s Russia
  27. Francis Fukuyama (2022) Liberalism and its Discontents  
  28. Laura Gamboa (2022) Resisting Backsliding: Opposition Strategies against the Erosion of Democracy
  29. Julian Gewirtz (2022) Never Turn Back: China and the Forbidden History of the 1980s
  30. Tom Ginsburg (2021) Democracies and International Law  
  31. Sara Wallace Goodman (2022) Citizenship in Hard Times How Ordinary People Respond to Democratic Threat 
  32. Karen J. Greenberg (2021) Subtle Tools: The Dismantling of American Democracy from the War on Terror to Donald Trump  
  33. Anna Grzymała-Busse (2023) Sacred Foundations: The Religious and Medieval Roots of the European State
  34. Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson (2020) Let Them Eat Tweets How the Right Rules in an Age of Extreme Inequality  
  35. Stephan Haggard and Robert Kaufman (2021) Backsliding: Democratic Regress in the Contemporary World  
  36. Nicole Hanna-Jones (2021) The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story  
  37. Michael Hoffman (2021) – Faith in Numbers: Religion, Sectarianism, and Democracy  
  38. Donald L. Horowitz (2021) Constitutional Processes and Democratic Commitment 
  39. Michael L. Hughes (2021) – Embracing Democracy in Modern Germany: Political Citizenship and Participation, 1871-2000. 
  40. John Ikenberry (2020) – A World Safe for Democracy: Liberal Internationalism and the Crises of Global Order. 
  41. Jennie C. Ikuta (2020) – Contesting Conformity: Democracy and the Paradox of Political Belonging  
  42. Elisabeth Ivarsflaten and Paul M. Sniderman (2022) The Struggle for Inclusion: Muslim Minorities and the Democratic Ethos  
  43. Christophe Jaffrelot (2021) – Modi’s India: Hindu Nationalism and the Rise of Ethnic Democracy  
  44. Robert Kagan (2023) The Ghost at the Feast: America and the Collapse of World Order, 1900-1941
  45. Donald F. Kettl (2020) The Divided States of America: Why Federalism Doesn’t Work  
  46. Ezra Klein (2020) Why We’re Polarized  
  47. Aynne Kokas (2022) Trafficking Data: How China Is Winning the Battle for Digital Sovereignty
  48. Ivan Krastev and Stephen Holmes (2019) – The Light that Failed: Why the West is Losing the Fight for Democracy 
  49. Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn (2020) Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope  
  50. Martin Krygier, Sydney, Adam Czarnota, and Wojciech Sadurski (2022) Anti-Constitutional Populism 
  51. Hélène Landemore (2020) – Open Democracy: Reinventing Popular Rule for the Twenty-First Century  
  52. Nathan Law and Evan Fowler (2021) Freedom: How We Lose It and How We Fight Back  
  53. Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way (2022) Revolution and Dictatorship The Violent Origins of Durable Authoritarianism
  54. Robert C. Lieberman, Suzanne Mettler, and Kenneth M. Roberts (2021) Democratic Resilience: Can the United States Withstand Rising Polarization?  
  55. James Loxton (2021) Conservative Party-Building in Latin America: Authoritarian Inheritance and Counterrevolutionary Struggle  
  56. Jie Lu and Yun-han Chu (2021) Understandings of Democracy: Origins and Consequences Beyond Western Democracies  
  57. Noam Lupu, Virginia Oliveros, and Luis Schiumerini (eds.) (2019) Campaigns and Voters in Developing Democracies Argentina in Comparative Perspective  
  58. Gabrielle Lynch, Justin Willis, and Nic Cheeseman (2021) – The Moral Economy of Elections in Africa: Democracy, Voting and Virtue  
  59. Aldo Madariaga (2020) Neoliberal Resilience: Lessons in Democracy and Development from Latin America and Eastern Europe  
  60. Scott Mainwaring and Tarek Masoud (eds.) (2022) Democracy in Hard Places. 
  61. John G. Matsusaka (2020) – Let the People Rule: How Direct Democracy Can Meet the Populist Challenge  
  62. Suzanne Mettler and Robert C. Lieberman (2020) – Four Threats: The Recurring Crises of American Democracy 
  63. Michael Miller (2021) – Shock to the System: Coups, Elections, and War on the Road to Democratization 
  64. An Xiao Mina (2019) Memes to Movements: How the World’s Most Viral Media Is Changing Social Protest and Power 
  65. Yascha Mounk (2022) The Great Experiment: Why Diverse Democracies Fall Apart and How They Can Endure  
  66. Cas Mudde (2019) – Far Right Today. 
  67. Jan-Werner Müller (2021) – Democracy Rules 
  68. Thant Myint-U (2019) – The Hidden History of Burma: Race, Capitalism, and Democracy in the 21st Century. 
  69. Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (2019) – Europe’s Burden: Promoting Good Governance Across Borders  
  70. Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili and Ilia Murtazashvili (2021) Land, the State, and War: Property Institutions and Political Order in Afghanistan  
  71. Moises Naim (2022) The Revenge of Power: How Autocrats Are Reinventing Politics for the 21st Century. 
  72. Pippa Norris and Ronald Inglehart (2019) – Cultural Backlash: Trump, Brexit, and Authoritarian Populism
  73. Elizabeth R. Nugent (2020) – After Repression: How Polarization Derails Democratic Transition  
  74. Barak Obama (2020) A Promised Land  
  75. Lynette Ong (2022) Outsourcing Repression: Everyday State Power in Contemporary China
  76. Zeynep Pamuk (2021) Politics and Expertise: How to Use Science in a Democratic Society  
  77. Zizi Papacharissi (2021) – After Democracy: Imagining Our Political Future  
  78. Takis Pappas (2019) – Populism and Liberal Democracy: A Comparative and Theoretical Analysis 
  79. Thomas Piketty (2019). Capital and Ideology  
  80. Thomas Piketty (2022) A Brief History of Equality  
  81. Jessica Pisano (2022) Staging Democracy: Political Performance in Ukraine, Russia, and Beyond
  82. Serhii Plokhy (2023) The Russo-Ukrainian War: The Return of History
  83. Peter Pomerantsev (2019) – This Is Not Propaganda: Adventures in the War Against Reality  
  84. Christopher Prosser, Edward Fieldhouse, and Geoff Evans (2019) Electoral Shocks: The Volatile Voter in a Turbulent World  
  85. Adam Przeworski (2019) – Crises of Democracy 
  86. Robert Putnam (2020) The Upswing: How America Came Together a Century Ago and How We Can Do It Again  
  87. Scott Radnitz (2021) Revealing Schemes The Politics of Conspiracy in Russia and the Post-Soviet Region  
  88. Jonathan Rodden (2019) Why Cities Lose: The Deep Roots of the Urban-Rural Political Divide  
  89. Nancy L. Rosenblum and Russell Muirhead (2019) A Lot of People Are Saying: The New Conspiracism and the Assault on Democracy  
  90. Bryn Rosenfeld (2020) – Autocratic Middle Class: How State Dependency Reduces the Demand for Democracy. 
  91. Michael Sandel (2020) The Tyranny of Merit: What’s Become of the Common Good  
  92. Dan Slater and Joseph Wong (2022) – From Development to Democracy: The Transformations of Modern Asia  
  93. Amy Erica Smith (2019) – Religion and Brazilian Democracy: Mobilizing the People of God  
  94. David Stasavage (2020) – The Decline and Rise of Democracy: A Global History from Antiquity to Today 
  95. Guillermo Trejo and Sandra Ley (2020) Votes, Drugs, and Violence The Political Logic of Criminal Wars in Mexico   
  96. Michael Walzer (2023) The Struggle for a Decent Politics: On Liberal as an Adjective
  97. Kurt Weyland (2021) – Assault on Democracy: Communism, Fascism, and Authoritarianism During the Interwar Years  
  98. Isabel Wilkerson (2020) Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents  
  99. Joshua Yaffa (2020) Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin’s Russia
  100. Shoshana Zuboff (2019) – The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power

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