How discrimination haunts Western democracy

How discrimination haunts Western democracy

By Michael G. Hanchard

As right-wing nationalism and authoritarian populism gain momentum across the world, liberals, and even some conservatives, worry that democratic principles are under threat. In The Spectre of Race, Michael Hanchard argues that the current rise in xenophobia and racist rhetoric is nothing new and that exclusionary policies have always been central to democratic practices since their beginnings in classical times. Contending that democracy has never been for all people, Hanchard discusses how marginalization is reinforced in modern politics, and why these contradictions need to be fully examined if the dynamics of democracy are to be truly understood.

Read the full transcript.


About the Author

Michael G. Hanchard is a professor in the Department of Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. His books include The Spectre of RaceParty/Politics, and Orpheus and Power.