Department of Economics
April 4, 2017

New Galor-Klemp paper on authoritarianism cited in NY Times Op Ed "In Search of a Good Emperor"


In an Op Ed in the New York Times on April 5, Ross Douthat cites the new working paper by Oded Galor and Marc Klemp, "Roots of Autocracy," when pointing out that more heterogenous populations have often been associated in history with more authoritarian rulers.

Statue of Marcus AureliusDouthat cites the paper while making a connection to racial and ethnic divisions in the contemporary United States and the election of Donald Trump as President. He suggests that ethnic and racial diversity can be manipulated by authoritarian rulers for their own advancement, but that there are also historical models of "good emperors" who wisely offer each segment of a diverse polity's population its rightful voice and protections.