Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America.

Nancy MacLean with Rob Wilson-Black

Sat 1 PM | Library

A talk by Nancy MacLean, author of Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America. Democracy in Chains blows open the doors to the unknown history of the relentless campaign by the radical rich to eliminate unions, suppress voting, privatize everything from schools to Medicare and Social Security, stop action on climate change, and alter the U.S. Constitution. MacLean traces this game plan back to the Nobel Prize-winning political economist James McGill Buchanan, who forged his ideas in an attempt to preserve the white elite’s power in the wake of Brown v. Board of Education. As much of America (and the world) reels from a seemingly unexpected swing to populism and far-right rhetoric, Democracy in Chains offers a peek behind the curtain to reveal just how we got here and what the future will hold. The Nation magazine has named it “the most valuable book” of the year.

Nancy MacLean

Nancy MacLean is an award-winning scholar of the twentieth-century U.S., whose new book, Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America, has been described by Publishers Weekly as “a thoroughly researched and gripping narrative… [and] a feat of American intellectual and political history.” Booklist called it “perhaps the best explanation to date of the roots of the political divide that threatens to irrevocably alter American government.”

206 Democracy in Chains

Rob Wilson-Black

Board member
A graduate of the University of Chicago (PhD, AM) under Martin E. Marty, and the University of Richmond, Rob is the author of numerous articles, blogs, podcasts, and a forthcoming book on religion and education. He has given talks on campuses throughout the world, including UC-Berkeley, Northwestern, Georgetown, the University of Chicago, the University of Cape Town, and the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. Rob has been CEO of Sojourners since 2013, and serves as co-chair of the National Museum of American Religion Board, on the Alumni Council of the University of Chicago Divinity School, Sidwell Friends School Parents Committee on Equality, Justice and Community, and the Wild Goose Festival Board.

He lives in Reston, Virginia with his wife of 23 years, the Reverend Juli Wilson-Black, a Presbyterian minister, and their children Hannah (15) Claire (12) and Owen (8). They travel with him to many of the 65 countries he has visited for research, speaking, and education.

206 Democracy in Chains

Session #206