David Renton, The New Authoritarians: Convergence on the Right, Chicago, Haymarket Books, 2019, $10.84 USD.
Broadly speaking, there are a group of political scientists and historians making the case that we may be experiencing a newfound convergence between what were formerly starkly different authoritarian and democratic national forms of governance. In The New Authoritarians: Convergence on the Right, David Renton weaves a scenography of mainstream conservatism’s lapse, wherein histories of war and colonial power—particularly as it concerns global institutions such as the United Nations, the IMF or World Bank—allowed for the uptake of far right politics beyond the West’s own borders. The victories of Donald Trump in the US and Boris Johnson in the UK have boosted not only an already confident right but a fringe ideology within it. From General Sisi in Egypt and Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil to Rodrigo Duterte in the Philippines and Recep Erdoğan in Turkey, we are privy to growing far-right patriotism, where right-wing parties have radicalized and then normalized politics once restricted to the margins.