Democracy and culture

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    Book Review: The Crowdsourced Panopticon: Conformity and Control on Social Media by Jeremy Weissman

Book Review: The Crowdsourced Panopticon: Conformity and Control on Social Media by Jeremy Weissman

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In The Crowdsourced Panopticon: Conformity and Control on Social Media, Jeremy Weissman explores the role of ‘peer-to-peer’ surveillance through social media and how this is increasingly shaping our behaviour. This is a welcome addition to the scholarly work on surveillance and privacy, writes Matt Bluemink, with a clear, approachable writing style and a wealth of empirical examples. 

The Crowdsourced Panopticon: Conformity and […]

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    Alexis de Tocqueville, pandemic virtue and selfishness, and American democracy in decline.

Alexis de Tocqueville, pandemic virtue and selfishness, and American democracy in decline.

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The 19th century French political thinker, Alexis de Tocqueville, observed that in America, motivation almost universally came from self-interest understood in a new way, rather than from virtue, which was often the case in European aristocracies. Jeffrey K. Tulis writes that the COVID-19 pandemic has seen deviations from this tendency, with a rise in both brute selfish and virtuous […]

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    Book Review: Online Afterlives: Immortality, Memory and Grief in Digital Culture by Davide Sisto

Book Review: Online Afterlives: Immortality, Memory and Grief in Digital Culture by Davide Sisto

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In Online Afterlives: Immortality, Memory and Grief in Digital Culture, Davide Sisto explores how digital technologies have come to impact our relationship with death, traversing the numerous digital devices and practices that are shaping mourning and grief today. Illustrated by multiple real-world examples and supported by relevant literature, this book offers an excellent introduction to death and digital culture, finds Mona Oikarinen.

Online Afterlives: […]

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    Capitalism versus capitalism: Fox News and ‘strategic lying’

Capitalism versus capitalism: Fox News and ‘strategic lying’

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In the US, two election technology companies are suing right-wing broadcaster Fox News for defamation over the network’s coverage of the 2020 presidential election, when it broadcast stories about rigged voting machines. Bart Cammaerts looks at the implications of the cases for the relationship between capitalism, the media and disinformation.

Capitalism tends to have all the cake, eat it […]

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    Why Americans’ support for democratic values may not protect democracy in practice

Why Americans’ support for democratic values may not protect democracy in practice

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Former President Trump’s claims that he lost the 2020 election because of voter fraud, and the increasing number of states enacting voter restrictions have led to questions about the state of democracy in the US. In new research, Peter Hanson, Danielle Lussier, and Georgia Rawhouser-Mylet find that in general, support for democratic values in the US is robust. But […]

Evangelicals and Their Politics: Dispatches from the Field

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In the 2016 and 2020 US Presidential elections, evangelical Christians voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump. Katie Gaddini unpicks the political relationship this type of Christianity had with Donald Trump, how it changed in 2020, and what it means for American politics moving forward.

On 15 June, LSE Religion and Global Society, together with the US Centre and Department of International Relations, […]

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    In explaining the rise of populism, it’s not economic anxiety vs. identity politics – it’s both.

In explaining the rise of populism, it’s not economic anxiety vs. identity politics – it’s both.

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Many commentators attributed Donald Trump’s surprise 2016 election victory to the role played by voters heavily affected by deindustrialization, often located in the so-called Midwestern ‘Rust Belt’. In new research which examines voting patterns in counties which have experienced manufacturing layoffs, Leonardo Baccini and Stephen Weymouth find that that these layoffs are associated with greater support for Republican challengers […]

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    Book Review: Why We Drive: On Freedom, Risk and Taking Back Control by Matthew Crawford

Book Review: Why We Drive: On Freedom, Risk and Taking Back Control by Matthew Crawford

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In Why We Drive: On Freedom, Risk and Taking Back Control, Matthew Crawford argues for driving as an activity that illustrates important features of a humanistic outlook worth preserving: the ability to exercise skill and judgment, to balance prudence and risk and, more broadly, to negotiate one’s individual freedom within the collaborative give-and-take of the road. While the book underplays the environmental […]

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    Never a Dull Moment: How an intense decade of religious politics divided Americans and Biden’s Catholicism can bring unity

Never a Dull Moment: How an intense decade of religious politics divided Americans and Biden’s Catholicism can bring unity

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In the inaugural post in our joint series on Religion and the Biden Administration, Judd Birdsall outlines how religion and politics have evolved over the past two decades in the United States. Highlighting a series of moments, Birdsall discusses the moments Islam, Mormonism, secularism, Evangelicalism, and – now – Catholicism have had in American politics.

On 15 June, LSE […]

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    What Happened?: In his Cabinet appointments and actions, Joe Biden has elevated the voices of women and marginalised gender communities.

What Happened?: In his Cabinet appointments and actions, Joe Biden has elevated the voices of women and marginalised gender communities.

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President Joe Biden’s administration is one of the most gender inclusive in history, with five women, including two women of color, in his Cabinet. Amy Tatum writes that through his appointments and other measures like Executive Orders and Proclamations, Biden is giving voice to women and marginalised gender communities. 

Following the 2020 US General Election, our mini-series, ‘What Happened?’, explores […]

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