In Inequality and Governance in an Uncertain World: Perspectives on Democratic & Autocratic Governments, the authors address structural and systemic inequalities in democratic and autocratic governments from a multidimensional perspective in nine world regions (Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and North Africa, South Asia, East Asia, Eurasia, Eastern Europe, Western Europe, North America, and Latin America). Their focus is on issues of race, caste, class, gender, religion, culture, and ethnicity which has intensified during the COVID-19 pandemic. The fragility of democracies is only enhanced by the sobering reality of the climate crisis and the horrible nature of disinformation through social media. However, just as the world has been witnessing a shift toward autocracy, a commitment to democracy can be also possible through a renewal of the social contract, calling for more equitable social, economic, and health policies, obliterating the intersections of inequality, and trudging toward a more sustainable future for all.
Rekha Datta is Professor of Political Science at Monmouth University where she holds the Freed Endowed Chair in Social Sciences.
Saliba Sarsar is Professor of Political Science at Monmouth University and Visiting Research Collaborator at the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.
Chapter 1: Politics, Governance, and the Politics of Inequality: A Focus on Nigeria: Julius O. Adekunle
Chapter 2: The Middle East and North Africa: A Region of Inequalities: Saliba Sarsar
Chapter 3: Persistent Gender-Based Social and Economic Inequalities in India: Abha S. Sood
Chapter 4: Growing Inequality and Problems of Governance: Threats to Democracy and Human Security in Bangladesh: Golam Mathbor
Chapter 5: The Expansion of Governmental Control in China Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic: Peter W. Liu
Chapter 6: Strongman on a Tightrope: Achievements and Failures of Putin’s Autocracy in Russia: Thomas S. Pearson
Chapter 7: The COVID-19 Pandemic and Policy Choices in Eastern Europe: Kevin L. Dooley
Chapter 8: The Pandemic, Politics, and Populism in Three Western European Democracies:
A Comparative Analysis of Britain, France, and Italy: Kenneth L. Campbell
Chapter 9: ‘Speech Now’ But Not with a Bullhorn: Political Misinformation in the Age of Super PACs: Joseph N. Patten
Chapter 10: Guided by the Light of Freedom: Black Women’s 100 Year Struggle for the Ballot, 1865-1965: Hettie V. Williams and Denis Long
Chapter 11: Coloniality and COVID-19 in Mexico: Manuel Chávez
Chapter 12: Inequality and Governance Across World Regions: A Concluding Perspective: Stephen J. Chapman
“Covering a variety of regions, historical periods, and pressing issues, Saliba Sarsar and Rekha Datta’s collection impressively grapples with some of the most urgent issues of the day: the multiple threats and challenges to governance across a range of systems – from democratic to autocratic - by deep seated divisions and inequalities, exacerbated by COVID. This scholarly collection impressively explores the impact of the COVID pandemic in exacerbating inequalities, weakening democracies, and strengthening autocracies in nine regions of the world. The authors provide insightful nuances to these general trends, not only making strong contributions to scholarship, but addressing issues that are of great interest to the general public.”