Dictators, Intellectuals and the Spiritual Problems of Modernity
Last fall, Professor Paul Hollander visited Harvard’s Program on Constitutionalism and Democracy, a JMC partner program. In his lecture, he discussed intellectuals’ political activity, dictators’ influence on opinion, and the personal nature of politics. Watch his lecture below.
Paul Hollander is Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a Center Associate of the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies at Harvard University. Born in Hungary, he fled to the United States after the Hungarian Revolution of 1956 was put down by Soviet forces. He earned his Ph.D. in Sociology from Princeton and is the author of many books. He will discuss his new book From Benito Mussolini to Hugo Chavez: Intellectuals and a Century of Political Hero Worship (2016). Paul Hollander: “I will suggest some explanations of the political misjudgments of many Western intellectuals with special reference to the highly patterned, wishful misperceptions of the dictators, of the intellectuals’ pursuit of meaning, community and social justice, the connections between problems of modernity and political hero worship, and those between the personal and political realm.”
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