The Third Wave: Democratization In The Late Twentieth Century

In This Review

The Third Wave: Democratization In The Late Twentieth Century

By Samuel P. Huntington
University of Oklahoma Press, 1991
384 pp. $24.95
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Samuel P. Huntington has provided some of the best conceptual analysis of contemporary political science and this work is yet another in that tradition. Here he analyzes the transition to democracy of some thirty countries, mainly in Asia and Latin America, in the period before the democratic revolutions in eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Mindful that democratization may not last-indeed he discusses past reversals-Huntington presents "guidelines for democratizers" in dealing with and overturning authoritarian regimes. This is, however, less a "how to" book than a magnificent explanation of the political, economic, social and cultural roots of the democratic process-a political philosophy that appears to have entered a growth period.