Conspiracy and Complicity Got Our Democracy Here

What Role Have We All Played in the Spread of Disinformation and the Rise of Authoritarianism?

Two phenomena have characterized the outgoing Trump administration and spilled over to other countries around the world. The first is the astonishing power of conspiracy theories. The second is the no less astonishing capacity of generally honorable men and women to become complicit in the crimes and misdemeanors of the leaders for whom they work. Both were on vivid display on January 6, 2021, during the attempted insurrection at the Capitol and the prior and subsequent calls by Republican members of Congress to invalidate the results of a free and …

The Horror Genre’s Unique Autopsy of Our Times | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

The Horror Genre’s Unique Autopsy of Our Times

Terrifying Films Are Feasting Off Real-World Nightmares—And Experiencing a Global Renaissance

You know it’s been a bad year when making a “Masque of the Red Death” reference this Halloween season seems banal and obvious. What use is there for the genre …

For Global Democracy, These Are the Worst of Times, But Also the Best of Times | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

For Global Democracy, These Are the Worst of Times, but Also the Best of Times

A Rising Tide of Authoritarianism Co-Exists With Advancing Forms of Participatory and Direct Democracy

Right now, it can feel like the worst of times for democracy. It also can feel like the best of times.

Democracy is under stress around the world from authoritarians and …

UCLA Political Scientist Richard D. Anderson

People Don’t Realize How Circumspect Putin Is

Richard D. Anderson has been a professor of political science at UCLA since 1989 and is the author of multiple books, including Discourse, Dictators and Democrats: Russia’s Place in a …

UCLA Law Professor Kal Raustiala

Lawyers Care More About Fixing the World; Political Scientists Just Want to Understand It

Kal Raustiala is a professor at UCLA School of Law and the UCLA International Institute, where he teaches in the Program on Global Studies. Since 2007 he has served as …

How Venezuela’s Oil Riches Fueled a Literary Explosion

In the Mid-20th Century, Writers Seized on the Conflicts Laid Bare by Petroleum's Power to Reshape Society

On December 14, 1922, a gusher of petroleum was discovered in Zulia, a rural area of western Venezuela. For nine days the oil showered onto the surrounding farmland, scaring the …