(This is an extract from the new Introduction to Linz's Totalitarian and Authoritarian Regimes text, which originally appeared in the Handbook of Political Science, Vol 3 ( Macropolitical Theory) 1975. This new edition of the work is published by the USA by Lynne Rienner in 2000.
Facing the prospect of the publication of a study written twenty‑five ears ago, inevitably I feel ambivalent. l So much has happened both intellectually and on the political scene that there is the temptation to rewrite, extend, and add to the original text. At the same time, I feel that the original work has value just as it was written in 1973‑1974. Within the limitations of space imposed then by the editors of the Handbook of Political Science, the work is in some way the centerpiece of a trilogy including Crisis, Breakdown and Re-equilibration (Linz, 1978)* and Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation: Southern Europe, South America, and Post‑Communist Europe (Linz and Stepan, 1996). The three cover the period between 1914 and 1989, which Franqois Furet (1999), Ernst Nolte (1987), and Eric Hobsbawm (1994) have analyzed as the shortened twentieth century and the age of totalitarianism.
The 1978 book and my work on fascism (Linz, 1976, 1980) could be seen as part of the present book insofar as they contribute to our understanding of why and how democracies broke down and nondemocratic regimes became established, as well as why some democracies survived. The work on democratic transitions could well be the last chapter, since it deals with the crisis of the regimes studied in the present book, their breakdown, and the transition to stable or fledgling democracies. Although my writings on fascism were not related to the German debate on the theory of fascism as an alternative to the study of authoritarianism (Kraushaar, 1997), I hope they contribute to our understanding of one of the great antidemocratic movements of this century. I underline the focus on fascist movements, since I share, to a large extent, De Felice's (1975) distinction between fascism as a movement and as a regime.
Many scholarly efforts to substitute fascism for totalitarianism as a category for describing or understanding the Nazi regime were based largely on Marxist, more or less sophisticated theories of fascism. Simultaneously, new empirical comparative research on fascist movements‑their successes and failures, their leaders, members, and social bases‑was in progress from a non‑Marxist or strictly historical perspective (Lacqueur, 1976; Larsen, Hagtvet, and Myklebust, 1980; Griffin, 1991; and the monumental work by Stanley Payne, 1995, that also includes the fascist regimes until their demise). My own writings on fascism were part of the latter effort.
The relatively short section on sultanistic regimes in the original Handbook essay has been expanded by Houchang Chehabi and myself (1998) in a long introduction to a collection of essays dealing in detail with that type of regime. Sultanism is a regime type that should be seen as clearly distinct from authoritarian regimes in their various manifestations, a point that escaped some readers of my original work. Mark Thompson (1995) has written an excellent monograph on the Marcos regime in the Philippines from this perspective.
When I wrote on totalitarianism in the early 1970s, the intellectual community was questioning the concept and ready to abandon it for good and bad reasons. Among the latter was the largely hopeless debate about the association of the concept with the polemics generated by the Cold War, ignoring its intellectual origins before World War II. Another mistaken reason was that the concept did not allow us to differentiate Soviet and Nazi totalitarianism. I never doubted the need for such differentiation, and I hope that I contributed to an appreciation of it in the Handbook essay. But I also felt strongly that a simple dichotomy between democratic regimes and nondemocratic rule obscured the distinctiveness of the totalitarian phenomenon.2 More recently, Sartori (1993) has argued against a simple dichotomy of democratic and nondemocratic regimes.
A legitimate reason for questioning the concept of totalitarianism, one that I tried to take into account, was that by the 1970s and thereafter it did not adequately capture the political reality of Soviet‑type regimes. I paid attention to this fact by reviewing the growing literature on changes in communist countries, particularly the Soviet Union. But I did not formulate as clearly as I would later the distinctive characteristics of what I call "post‑totalitarian political systems." In part this was the result of my sheer exhaustion after undertaking the comparative analysis of all types of nondemocratic regimes; but it also was due to the nature of a contribution to a handbook intended to reflect the state of the art. (A few scholars tried to apply my analysis of authoritarian regimes to late communist systems, an approach that could contribute some insights, but one that I found misleading.)
With the liberalization in Eastern Europe, scholars and activists there discovered the Western literature on totalitarianism (Rupnik, 1984). There was a strange resurgence of the totalitarianism approach being applied to systems that at one time were clearly totalitarian but that, in my view, were now better analyzed as post‑totalitarian (Linz and Stepan, 1996; Thompson, 1998). Although in the West some scholars wanted to ditch the concept of totalitarianism as politically tainted by the Cold War‑these scholars emphasized the positive aspects of communism compared to the totally negative view of fascism and particularly Nazism‑paradoxically, but understandably, opposition forces in Eastern Europe (with the significant exception of several authors writing on Poland [Djilas, 1993; Staniskis,1986]) were discovering the fruitfulness of the totalitarianism perspective. In fact, many opponents of authoritarian regimes, for example in Spain, felt that to characterize the regimes as authoritarian‑instead of totalitarian‑would serve to legitimize them.
Since my thinking about the distinction between totalitarian and authoritarian regimes was initially a reflection of my knowledge of the politics of Franco's Spain‑particularly from the late 1940s to the early 1960s‑a number of critics in Spain have stressed the totalitarian character or tendencies in early phases of the Franco regime (Ramirez, 1978). Some did not ever surrender the totalitarian label for the regime, perhaps because they felt that it gave greater moral legitimacy to their opposition. Ironically, this position is the reverse of that held by those who would question the category totalitarian as a result of the Cold War. I never would deny the totalitarian ambitions of the Spanish Falange and the totalitarian tendencies of the Franco regime during the hegemony of the Axis powers in Europe. I would, however, stress the legacy of limited pluralism in the origin of the regime, which Franco subordinated to his personal power and designs. This personalization frustrated the creation of a true and modern totalitarian regime. Javier Tusell's (1988) excellent study of Franco during the Civil War tells us much about the origins of Franco's power and his regime, which made genuine totalitarianism unlikely, except in the event of an Axis victory in World War I (and perhaps the displacement of Franco).3 I also refer the reader to Stanley Payne's (1987, 1999) excellent history of the Falange during the Franco years, which shows the complex relation between the Caudillo and the party, and to my own work on the transformation of the single party (Linz, 1970). In addition, studies of the elites of the regime have described in detail its limited pluralism (Miguel Jerez, 1982; Amando de Miguel, 1975; Viver Pi‑Sunyer, 1978).
As I developed in my essays in Daalder (1997) and Sollner et al. (1997), my commitment to the concept of totalitarianism is based on an intellectual need to distinguish a particular historical form of regime and society from other nondemocratic polities. It is not based as much on the distinction between democracy and totalitarianism, which I considered from the start to be obvious, nor on Hannah Arendt's emphasis on terror, but focuses instead on a regime form for completely organizing political life and society.
The historian Frangois Furet (1999) reiterated the need to retain totalitarianism as a distinctive type when he wrote:
Stalinized Bolshevism and National Socialism constitute the two examples of twentieth‑century totalitarian regimes. Not only were they comparable, but they form a political category of their own, which has become established since Hannah Arendt. I am well aware that this notion is not universally accepted, but I have yet to discover a concept more useful in defining the atomized regimes of societies made up of individuals systematically deprived of their political ties and subjected to the "total" power of an ideological party and its leader. Since we are discussing an ideal type, there is no reason why these regimes must be identical or even comparable in every way; nor need the characteristic in question be equally prominent throughout the history of such regimes. Hitler's Germany and Stalin's Russia were two different universes. Nazi Germany was less totalitarian in 1937 than it was in 1942, whereas Stalinist terror was more virulent before and after the war than during the war. But this does not preclude the possibility that both regimes, and they alone, set in motion the destruction of the civil order by the absolute submission of individuals to the ideology and the terror of the party‑state. It was only in these two cases that the mythology of the unity of the people in and by the party‑state, under the leadership of an infallible Guide, killed millions and presided over a disaster so complete that it destroyed the history of two nations, the Germans and the Russians, making their continuity all but inconceivable ....”
From a "totalitarian" perspective, the relation between the two regimes refutes the apparent simplicity of their comparison along ideological lines. Nazi Germany belonged to the family of Fascist regimes; and Stalin's Russia to the Bolshevik tradition. Hitler imitated Mussolini; Stalin followed Lenin. Such a classification is supported by the history of ideas, or of intentions, for it distinguishes two revolutionary ambitions‑one founded on the particular, the nation or the race, the other on the universal, if we accept that the emancipation of the proletariat prefigures that of all humanity. This classic point‑by-point comparison of the two ideologies does not rule out the possibility that either one of them constituted a closed system, based on an immanent interpretation of human history and offering something like salvation to all those suffering the ravages of bourgeois egoism. (pp. 181‑181)
I never would question the need for systematic comparison and the highlighting of the specific differences (as well as similarities) between the Soviet‑ and Nazi‑type regimes within the genus totalitarianism. Nor do I dispute the need for a nuanced comparative analysis of communist totalitarian systems, particularly between the Soviet Union and China and also between those two giants and other systems like Cuba, North Korea, Cambodia, and the East European countries. I have insisted that Poland was, for many years before 1989, closer to the authoritarian regime type than the totalitarian or the standard post‑totalitarian. The limits on terror in Cuba influenced my thinking toward the view that totalitarianism did not necessarily require terror on the scale of the Soviet Union, and the same would be true for the DDR (East Germany).
Totalitarianism and Post‑totalitarianism
In the case of the Soviet Union and to a lesser extent other East European communist regimes, scholarly questioning of a simplified model of totalitarianism, together with the realities of the post‑totalitarian regimes, led to the emergence of more sociological and economics based analyses to replace the political approach. The emphasis of modernization theory, in particular, was on industrialization, occupational and educational development, welfare state policies, and a presumed social contract between rulers and the people. At a later stage, attention turned to the failures of the modernization model of economic and social change: first, stability was attributed to the success of modernization; later, crisis and a breakdown to stagnation and the loss of dynamism and the capacity for innovation (Muller, 1997). In these perspectives, political and institutional structures, which in my view were and continued to be central, lost salience.
I would never argue that the more sociological and economic analyses were not legitimate (and to a greater or lesser extent, empirically valid); but I do argue that they did not provide the key to understanding political stability or crisis in these regimes. Totalitarianism was stable not only due to coercion, though that was an important factor‑during periods of both economic hardship and growing economic success, and post‑totalitarianism survived for a long time during the increasingly serious signs of crisis. That crisis, particularly in Eastern Europe, became more acute after Khrushchev's 1956 "secret" speech denouncing Stalin; and changes in those communist regimes ultimately were conditioned by a change in the Soviet leadership. That leadership, after considerable delay, initiated a political response that aimed at reform. But, somewhat as de Tocqueville wrote about the ancien regime, when reform finally was seriously considered, the crisis became even more acute. The unintended consequences of Gorbachev's actions did not lead to the survival of a reformed system, but to the break‑up and breakdown of the the Soviet Union (Brown, 1996). The regime collapse, while perhaps accelerated by social and economic changes, ultimately was triggered by the political decisions of the political leadership‑a leadership that long ago had lost faith in the totalitarian utopia and its ideologically defined goals, lost the capacity to mobilize the masses, and lost the will to use violence when challenged on the periphery of the system (Friedheim, 1993). The loss of capacity to use force fits into a Paretian type of analysis, and the loss of ideological faith at different levels can be analyzed in terms of Weberian concepts of legitimacy.
In my work with Alfred Stepan (1996) on the transition from post-totalitarianism to democracy (which did not include the failed democratizations), we limited ourselves to distinguishing post‑totalitarian regimes from both authoritarian regimes and the previous totalitarian regime. We did not enter into a detailed analysis of the change from totalitarianism to post‑totalitarianism, although we did point to different paths and degrees of change in the different European communist countries. Certainly much of the sociological literature on social changes in those countries, the structure of the economy (as analyzed, for example, by Zaslavskaya's  Novosibirsk School), and the politico‑administrative structures (like the work of Jerry Hough ) would be relevant in this context. A systematic comparative study of society, economy, and politics in the post‑totalitarian phase in different countries deserves top priority. The study of the legacy of the earlier totalitarianism on that phase and the continuing legacies from totalitarianism and post‑totalitarianism in the new and the failed democracies would be challenging.
The lesson to be learned from the study of the politics of post-totalitarianism is, to quote Klaus Muller (1997) in his work on neototalitarianism theory, "the stress it lays on domination and its specific irrationalities, variables which were indeed neglected by mainstream sociology and, after the Soviet breakdown, are ignored by liberalist optimism of neoclassic reform programs."
Was Fascist Italy Totalitarian?
I have been hesitant to characterize the Italian fascist regime as totalitarian, even though the term was invented by opponents of the regime to characterize it and assumed later by the fascists themselves (Petersen, 1996). I wrote of "arrested totalitarianism" to indicate not only the clearly totalitarian intention and conception of the fascists, but also the limitations that Italian society and certain institutions‑the monarchy, the army, the church‑imposed on its ambitions. Unlike Hannah Arendt, I did not reach that position on the basis of the limited terror, the smaller number of victims (particularly deaths after the takeover of power, until the later years of the war), since I had not included terror as a defining element of totalitarianism. However, more recent work by Italian scholars on the ideological commitment, the workings of the regime, the weakness of the institutions putting any limit on the party hegemony, and the personal power and sacralization of Mussolini could convince one of the more totalitarian character of the regime. Mussolini's statement quoted on pages 166‑167 of this book was perhaps more an excuse for his failure than a description of the circumstances under which his regime developed for many years.
As Emilio Gentile (1986) summarizes the position of the great scholar de Felice:
Fascism was never completely totalitarian; firstly, because it did not adopt mass terror and the concentration camp system; secondly, because it did not impose the supremacy of the party on the State, but brought about, instead, the "depoliticization" of the PNF (Partito Nazional Fascista) and its subordination to the State and to the duce; finally, because it never aimed "at a complete transition from the State based on right to the police State." In short, the fascist political system should be defined as an "imperfect totalitarianism." (pp. 200201)
Gentile, however, writes:
There has been a fascist conception of totalitarianism, and this cannot be overlooked. Once one attributes a "totalitarian tendency" to fascism, which distinguishes it from traditional authoritarian regimes, one then has to study how this tendency originated, how it was formed in reality, and how it operated to modify reality, conditioning the lives of millions of men and women in the process. The failure of fascist totalitarianism is not a proof of its non‑existence. The gap between myth and achievement is not an argument against the importance of myths in the politics of fascism and in its conception and mode of organization of the masses. (p. 201)
Consequently, an exact classification within one or other category is not possible. If authoritarian fascism characterized the construction phase of the "regime," it was totalitarian fascism, developing in fascism's second decade in power, which provided the dynamism and the goal of "transforming the State." (p. 203)
Placing Other Nondemocratic Regimes
I never intended the Handbook essay to be an exhaustive comparative analysis of all nondemocratic regimes, partly due to the lack of prior monographic research and, in a few cases, difficulty in finding an adequate conceptualization (for example, in the complex and fluid case of Mexico). In the meantime, it has become easier to incorporate Japan and Cuba in the discussion.
Excursus on the Scholarly Literature of Recent Decades
In the twenty‑five years since publication of the Handbook of Political Science, much has been learned about some of the nondemocratic regimes around the world. It would be foolish to attempt to summarize those developments here, since there are other works that accomplish that task. For example, Volume 2 of the Traite de science politique, edited by Madeleine Grawitz and Jean Leca (1985), includes excellent essays by L. Ferry and E. Pisier‑Kouchner, P. Ansert, K. D. Bracher, H. Carrere d'Encausse, and J. L. Domenach on different totalitarianisms and by G. Hermet on authoritarianism. The recent essay by Archie Brown (1999) is an excellent source of work done in the United Kingdom. It is impossible to refer in this limited space to the flood of books and articles on Nazi rule that have appeared; the anthology edited by Karl Dietrich Bracher, Manfred Funke, and Hans‑Adolf Jacobsen (1983) offers an interesting selection and a selected systematic bibliography. More recently, Eckhard Jesse (1996) has compiled an outstanding reader that includes writings on totalitarianism from different perspectives.
With the exceptions I have already noted and a few others, the work in the last twenty‑five years has been mostly excellent historical monographs and descriptive country studies. With the opening of the Soviet archives, we can expect additional work along these lines. Such work would allow us to understand better the different phases of Soviet totalitarianism from its inception after the revolution to the Stalinist period, the real meaning of Khrushchev's reforms (which can be seen either as a process of liberalization or as an attempt to revitalize totalitarianism without terror), the years of detotalitarianization (by default more than by intent) under Brezhnev (Bialer, 1980), and the active reforms by Gorbachev that led to the breakdown of the Soviet Union and to democratization.
While Italian archives have been open for decades, political scientists have not added much to our systematic knowledge of the nature and transformation of Italian fascist rule, from a theoretical perspective, that would allow us to understand better why totalitarianism was ultimately arrested in Italy. We do have, however, the monumental historical work of Renzo de Felice and the interesting writing of another historian, Emilio Gentile, mainly on the ideological origins of the regime. The Franco regime also has been the subject of excellent historical research that illuminates some of the origins of its limited pluralism, as well as excellent studies of the regime's elite. For Portugal, the work of Antonio Costa Pinto places Salazar's regime in the broader context of authoritarian European politics and the rise of fascism, focusing on Portugal's small fascist party and its fate under authoritarian rule. Manuel de Lucena (1976) has written an excellent study of Portuguese corporatism. There is still much scholarly work to be done by historians and social scientists on the nondemocratic regimes in Latin America, beyond the recent focus on transitions to democracy.
There have been some valuable newer studies of authoritarian nonfascist and even antifascist regimes: Ben‑Ami (1983) on the Primo de Rivera dictatorship in Spain; Kluge (1984) on Austria; Lucena (1976), Wiarda (1977), Schmitter (1979), and Costa‑Pinto (1995) on Portugal; Ozbudun (1995) on Turkey; Paxton (1972) on Vichy France; Stepan on Brazil (1973) and Peru (1978); Wynot (1974) on Poland; Lieven (1973) on the Baltic states; Jowitt (1978) on Romania; Liddle (1996) on Indonesia; Winckler on China (1999). The most important contribution to the debate on the new authoritarianism in Latin America, largely generated by O'Donnell's thesis of bureaucratic authoritarianism, is the book edited by David Collier (1970), with contributions by, among others, Albert Hirschman and Fernando Henrique Cardozo. The breakdown of military regimes in South America and Greece has led to new thinking about the military in authoritarian regimes. Alfred Stepan (1988) formulated the distinction between regimes in which the "hierarchial" military assumed power through its top leadership and those where a "nonhierarchical" military (i.e., officers of lower rank) assumed power, displacing their superiors, as happened in Greece. This distinction became very important in the analysis of the role of the military in the transition to democracy and particularly the problems of democratic consolidation (Linz and Stepan, 1996).
The various transitions‑to democracy, to an uncertain future of nonconsolidated democracy, or to failed democratization processes‑together with the end of hopes for the democratization of some authoritarian regimes in the third world have created conditions for an objective, intellectual analysis of regimes in comparative politics. For example, the three volumes of Democracy in Developing Countries on Africa (1988), Asia (1989) and Latin America (1999), edited by Larry Diamond et al., cover developments in countries that have experienced both authoritarian and democratic rule, by country experts.
The reader of my work‑and that of most of the contributors to the volumes that Alfred Stepan and I edited on the breakdown of democracy‑would realize that we should not overestimate the capacity of antidemocratic leaders and the success of antidemocratic mass movements, but instead take into account the failures of democratic governments and leaders, their inability to confront their opponents in defense of liberal democracy, and, for some, their semiloyalty to democracy.4 From that perspective, the taking of power by Mussolini (Lyttelton, 1987) and Hitler was not inevitable, nor were the October Revolution and Lenin's rise to power. Totalitarianism was not the inevitable outcome of the European crisis created by World War I and even less the outcome of the Great Depression. It was one of the possible fruits of modernity; but democracy was another. The victory of communism in Russia and the communist threats in Europe met with different responses, some democratic and some authoritarian, and not pace Nolte (1987)‑an inevitable struggle between fascism and communism.
A healthy corrective to any overdetermined view of the history of the twentieth century is the reading of Henry A. Turner's (1989) counterfactual history based on the assumption that Hitler died in a car accident in the summer of 1930. This thoughtful exercise makes excellent reading, providing us with much food for thought. Had that death occurred in 1930, it would have prevented me from writing many of the pages of this book. Still remaining, however, would be the question of the development of totalitarianism in the Soviet Union and other communist countries. And it would not have assured an earlier consolidation of democracy in many European and Latin American countries and in Japan.
The Shortened Century of Totalitarianism
The history of the origins of the political disasters of the "short century" should start with 1914, World War I and its aftermath. As Hobsbawm (1994), Franqois Furet (1999), Ernst Nolte (1987), and Karl Bracher (1984) emphasize, the old bourgeois order was shattered by the guns of August. Without the war there would not have been the split of socialism between Bolsheviks and Social Democrats, nor the rise of Italian interventionist nationalism, Mussolini and fascism, the German radical left, and the Nazi success in destroying Weimar democracy. Certainly, the intellectual roots of the ideological response to the war and its aftermath were there, as Bracher, Mosse, Gentile (1975), Sternhell (1978), and Furet among others stress. The war generated among respectable intellectuals, as Mommsen (1997‑1998) has shown, a nationalist‑chauvinist, militarist reaction that may be difficult to understand today. With the mass slaughter, its revolutionary aftermath, the new nationalisms, and the displacement of millions from their homes, the war desensitized people to the violence and horrors to come, a point eloquently made by Hobsbawm.
That legacy became articulated and institutionalized in the great antidemocratic movements and the regimes studied in this book. In the common matrix of the war and its aftermath, the intellectual seeds of revolutionary Marxism, irrationalist philosophy, social Darwinism, and racism would bear new and poisoned fruit. (A more complete discussion would include an analysis of those origins, but the works cited should allow the reader to fill that gap.) The generational composition of the founders and top elites of fascist and communist parties all over the world, and certainly of the German Nazi and communist parties, reflects the centrality of the experience of World War I, in contrast to the older elites of the Christian Democrats and even more the socialist parties (Linz, 1978, pp. 43‑47, especially Table 1).
Reading Furet and a number of other works of intellectual and cultural history gives us considerable insight into why totalitarianism seduced so many outstanding minds‑though not always for long. There is no fully equivalent work on the attraction of fascism, although there is a useful review by Hamilton (1971) and the writings on Heidegger, Carl Schmitt, and Gottfried Benn and on the fascist graduates of the Ecole Normale Superieure (Rubinstein, 1990). Would those regimes have had the same success without that appeal to intellectuals? Possibly yes, considering their appeal to common men, the desire for security, and above all the fear that their terrorism created. We should not forget their ability to mobilize participation through the single party and the administered mass organizations, nor the gratification derived from, or dependent on, on that participation. Within the scope of my early work it was not possible to convey sufficiently the importance of that "democratic" participatory dimension.
Nolte (1987) has rightly stressed the importance of the fear of revolution in Europe in generating reactionary sentiments. That fear was stimulated by the unsuccessful but bloody revolutionary attempts and the widespread revolutionary rhetoric in the socialist movement, by the efforts of communist emissaries to kindle revolution, by the conflicts in the new nations bordering on the Soviet Union, and by the militias and army officers involved in repressing revolution, many of whom turned against even the democratic governments that were successfully stopping revolution.
Anticommunist, anti-revolutionary sentiments were an essential component of the antidemocratic wave in Europe (not always led by the fascists). Fascism and Nazism were the beneficiaries of that response to communism, but anti-communism, in my view, was not the only, and in many cases not the most important, ideological basis and appeal of fascism. Nazism was not just anti-communism. Hitler's racism may have been reinforced and legitimized by an emphasis on the Jewish leadership of some of the revolutionary movements of the time, but it had prewar and deeper intellectual and cultural roots. Fascism was a more complex phenomenon and movement than anti-communism. As any reader of the work of Gentile (1975) knows, Italian fascism's antiliberal, antibourgeois, even anticlerical elements, as well as its overall style, are not the reaction to communism or the result of "learning" from the Soviet experience, as Nolte argues in his scholarly but one-sided analysis.
While anti‑Semitism and the Holocaust occupy a central and unique place in the analysis of Nazi ideology, it should be considered as part of a broader racist ideology: "a full blown system of thought, an ideology like Conservatism, Liberalism" (Mosse, 1985, p. ix). That racism was reflected in the mass murder of gypsies and in the sterilization of the German children of black soldiers (World War I). Such social‑ Darwinist eugenic thinking was part of a larger body of scientific thought, which had a broad appeal beyond Germany and counted many followers in the democratic left. (We tend to forget the scientific and pseudoscientific pedigree of racist thinking, of Gobineau, Vacher de Laponge, Houston Stewart Chamberlain, and the eugenic movement.) Even when Nazism, as other fascist movements, was fundamentally nationalist (and therefore "particularistic" rather than "universalistic," to use Furet's terminology), its racism was in a sense "universalistic," ready to sacrifice the nation and those citizens not identifying with the racist-biological myths, and attempting to mobilize racists beyond its borders. The racist‑eugenic utopia was something quite different from nationalism (Mosse, 1983).
Liberal democrats, however, should not ignore the contribution of the "civil war" atmosphere in the crisis of democracy that made possible the fascist and particularly the Nazi appeal: there was an atmosphere generated by the rhetoric of the class struggle, the futile violence of German communist party (KPD) activists, the growth of the communist parties, and the ambiguity toward liberal democracy of some sectors of the socialist movement. Anticommunism could lead, and did lead in a number of countries, to authoritarian regimes and to repression, but not to a totalitarian system with its revolutionary efforts at social transformation. Also, a number of democracies, some incorporating the socialist parties into the government, were able to oppose both fascism and communism. The totalitarian ambitions of fascists, the totalitarian dimension of Italian fascism, cannot be understood as a reflection of anticommunism. The radical and fully totalitarian rule of Hitler adds Nazism's distinctive anti‑Semitism and even more broadly conceived racism to fascist ideological elements and the Italian model. Indeed, Nazi racism went beyond the characteristic nationalism of fascist movements. (In this context, it is significant that "neofascist" groups and skinheads today do not connect that much with the fascist legacy, but instead use Nazi symbolism in their violence against foreigners).
The Totalitarian Temptation
Writing from the perspective of the year 2000, looking back at the forms politics has taken in the twentieth century, what strikes me most, besides the horrors and the inhumanity, is the enthusiasm, the hopes, the commitment, and the idealism generated by communism and fascism, including Nazism. The same has to some extent been true for anticommunism and antifascism. In contrast, the much weaker appeal of democracy in the first half of the twentieth century‑in spite of its successes and the measured hopes‑and even disillusionment (desencanto, or Entzauberung) ‑ associated with it in the last quarter are striking. The appeal of totalitarianism contrasts with the generally passive acceptance of authoritarian regimes and the apathy, opportunism, and cynicism in the response to sultanistic rule. The capacity for deception and temptation by totalitarianism is only equaled by its tragic legacy. Only work focusing more than my own does on the ideological dimension of totalitarianism, as seen sometimes in films, newsreels, and literature, can capture the basis for the political institutions discussed.
An issue that I did not deal with sufficiently in the Handbook is the inclination of some scholars to explain totalitarianism as the result of unique historical legacies. During World War II this was a popular interpretation of Nazism by politicians, historians, and psychologists focusing on Germany's historical uniqueness, the Prussian legacy, Lutheran political thought and ethics, a particular kind of national character, etc. Richard Hamilton (1995) has articulated well some of the difficulties with cultural arguments about the success of Nazism. I never sympathized with such interpretations, and the development of German democracy after the war only confirmed my skepticism. There were similar approaches in attempting to explain Leninism and Stalinism (Arnason, 1993). More recently, the historian Richard Pipes (1984, 1990) has argued that an exploration of Soviet totalitarianism "must be sought not in socialism but in the political culture which draws on socialist ideas to justify totalitarian practices," as summarized by Klaus Muller (1997, p. 32). Daniel Goldhagen's (1996) work on the roots of Hitler's holocaust in German anti‑Semitism, which created a great deal of controversy (Schoeps 1996), is in the same tradition.
The emphasis on the Russian cultural matrix leads to a paradoxical effort to stress a discontinuity between Leninism and Stalinism. The argument is that many of Stalin's policies reflected a break with the leftist ideological heritage and led to a rightist‑nationalist regime that reconstructed traditional authoritarian patterns and implemented repressive ethnic policies. With that line of thinking, the concept of totalitarianism can encompass both Nazism and Stalinism. The latter can even be interpreted as a variant of fascism; and in that way, the original Marxist‑Leninist ideology can be saved from responsibility for totalitarianism. A new falsification of history, by ignoring the Leninist roots of totalitarianism, would serve to cover the failure of the communist utopia revealed with the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.
Samuel Huntington's Clash of Civilizations (1996) may encourage a revival of such cultural explanations of nondemocratic rule. However considering the example of Confucianism, the democratic politics of contemporary Taiwan and South Korea make such a culturalist perspective questionable (Stepan, 2000). Obviously, I do not totally dismiss such approaches‑as long as they are not given a dominant place, and cultures and religions are not considered homogeneous and unchangeable. But a cast‑iron political culture interpretation in my view is untenable. Perhaps I am allergic to such interpretations because they recall many writings on the incompatibility of Catholicism and democracy and the inherent propensity for authoritarianism in the Spanish culture, ignoring a wealth of other social, economic, and political factors.
Mass Society and Totalitarianism
I have kept my distance from the mass‑society perspective in explaining totalitarianism, which probably is my main reason for not agreeing with Hannah Arendt's analysis. This reluctance is based on the facts about the rise of Nazism in German society stressed by Rainer Lepsius (1993) and Sheridan Allen (1984), among others, but also on the theoretical‑empirical critique of the concept by Theodor Geiger (1954) and Salvador Giner (1976) and, going farther back, Simmel's analysis of the individualizing consequences of modernity. Many, if not most, of the people who joined the Nazi movement were not lone individuals, but did so as members of "civil society" groups taken over by Nazi activists or went to Nazi rallies with friends.
The successes of totalitarian movements were not the result of alienation generated by a "mass society," of the loneliness of individuals in modern industrial or capitalist societies. In fact, in some cases those successes were facilitated by the integration of individuals into close groups that rejected the larger more complex and open society. Some of those groups, like the Italian veterans (the Arditi) and the German Freikorps, had been formed on the basis of close emotional relations developed during World War I and the violent postwar years. The "mass society" approach to some extent reflects the search for an alternative to the "class society" and class conflict view of disappointed Marxists.
However, the mass‑society perspective does help us to understand the success of totalitarian rule once consolidated. The destruction of civil society‑which could not function without the freedoms guaranteed by the liberal state based on the rule of law (the Rechtsstaat) – the penetration of society by mass organizations controlled by a single party, and the fears generated by repression and terror certainly isolated individuals and facilitated mass manipulation and mobilization. Even such primary groups as the family and circles of friends were threatened. The diary (1918‑1921) of a young French intellectual, Pierre Pascal, who joined the Bolsheviks in 1917, reveals how a contemporary, engaged observer perceived the impact of totalitarianism on society:
A unique and heady spectacle: the demolition of a society. This is the very realization of the fourth psalm of the Sunday vespers, and the Magnificat: the powerful cast from their throne and the poor man lifted from his hovel. The masters of the house are confined to one room, and each of the other rooms houses a family. There are no more rich people: only poor and poorer. Knowledge no longer confers either privilege or respect. The former worker promoted to director gives orders to the engineers. Salaries, high and low, are getting closer to each other. The right to property is reduced to the rags on one's back. Judges are no longer obliged to apply the law if their sense of proletarian equity contradicts it. Marriage is merely registration with the civil authorities, and notice of divorce can be served by postcard. Children are instructed to keep an eye on their parents. Sentiments of generosity have been chased out by the adversity of the times: the family sits around counting mouthfuls of bread or grams of sugar. Sweetness is now reputed to be a vice. Pity has been killed by the omnipresence of death. Friendship subsists only as camaraderie. (quoted in Furet, 1999, pp. 102‑103)
The difficulties in re‑creating civil society even in new post‑totalitarian democracies show the lasting impact of a "flattened social landscape" (Marc Howard, 1999).
Totalitarianism and "Democracy"
The relation between democracy, as I have defined it, and totalitarianism remained underdeveloped in the Handbook, but today it deserves further thought. My earlier position was determined by the fact that totalitarian rule had not ever been established by free choice in a competitive electoral setting, contrary to the misinterpretation (if not outright lie) that Hitler came to power as the result of a free election. However, I have not thought enough about the possibility of the democratic decision of a majority to do away with the freedoms that are the essence of democratic government‑a possibility that we should not dismiss lightly. As de Tocqueville cautioned, democracy as a supreme value, without giving equal or greater value to freedom, can be risky. Certainly, the probability is that a functioning democratic system will not lead to an unfree, nondemocratic political system, but we can not exclude that frightful possibility. In our enthusiasm for the victory of democracy, as Daniel Bell warned me, we should not forget that freedom is as important as (if not more important than) democracy‑that is, government by those elected by the people. The liberal freedoms certainly are important as an instrumental requirement for democratic political processes, but above all they are valuable in themselves. We should not forget that both fascism (especially Nazism) and communism were profoundly antiliberal, but claimed to be "democratic" in a way that authoritarian regimes did not.
The Centrality of Ideology
The reading of Franqois Furet's The Passing of an Illusion: The Idea of Communism in the Twentieth Century, with its focus on ideology (and in passing, fascism) and the ideological manipulation of antifascism and later, anti ‑anticommunism, is perhaps the best complement to the political‑science analysis in this book. Nolte in a sense does the same with how anticommunist sentiments were used by fascism. Both extremist ideologies sought to obscure the realities of their respective totalitarian systems, gaining support from those who should have been their enemies‑liberal democrats, social democrats, Christians, nationalists, and above all bourgeois and (although it might sound strange to those weaned on the Marxist theories of fascism) capitalists‑and who were seen by both ideologies as enemies to be destroyed. This deliberately created confusion led many to see the shortened twentieth century as one of conflict between communism and fascism‑as Nolte does with great knowledge but also simplification‑ignoring the roots of fascist thought before the October Revolution and of Nazism in a tradition of racist thinking, social Darwinism, pseudo‑biological science, and anti‑Semitism.
The differing ideologies are, of course, one of the main distinctions between communism and fascism. What are striking, however, are the similarities in communism's and fascism's commitment to ideas, their use of ideas to derive policies (sometimes very concrete measures, even in realms otherwise remote from politics such as art, music, scientific debates), their fanatic effort to implement those policies, the murderous consequences, and the extent to which large numbers of cadres, party members, and citizens believed in them.
No one will question that the ideologically grounded and argued debates among the contenders for Lenin's mantle up to the purges in the 1930s were part of a gigantic and ultimately murderous power struggle. But it would be a mistake to ignore the seriousness of the debates, the intellectual articulation of the positions. That Stalin finally became the despot he was and the only source of ideological formulations could be seen as the deterioration of the ideological pillar of totalitarianism and the strengthening of another (i.e., the concentrated monopoly of power in the leader and his trusted lieutenants, who control the apparatus of the one‑party state and its organizations).
It is the centrality of ideological belief that made so devastating to the system Khrushchev's 1956 revelations, the loss of faith in the communist utopia and its replacement with an emphasis by the leadership on "really existing socialism," and the realization by common people of the "living lie." This in spite of the ritual reiteration and recitation of ideology and the remaining loyalty of some cadres, activists, and fewer and fewer intellectuals. The crisis of totalitarianism and the drift into post‑totalitarianism is largely, but not only, a crisis of the ideological way of thinking. However, the "wooden language" of the regime had become a mentality for the apparatchiks and even citizens, which survives today in the new democracies.
I want to emphasize that ideology shaped the behavior and actions of social groups and individuals operating from widely varying motives. As Kershaw (1991, p. 74) put it, these actors "shaped the progressive dynamic of Nazi rule by interpreting Hitler's presumed wishes without any need for close central direction. At the same time, it allowed the functional importance of Hitler's ideology to be seen less as concrete aims to be implemented than as interpreted, utopian `directives for action' integrating different forms of social motivation and gradually coming into focus as realizable objectives without the necessity of close steerage from the dictator himself." This was probably even more true for Stalin, as Bialer (1980) noted when writing about "preemptive obedience." In any case, the ideology, intentions, and actions of the dictator, while far from unimportant, are insufficient to explain the processes in totalitarian systems. They are admittedly more important than I recognized in the Handbook‑where I did not make reference to the growing biographical literature on political leaders but certainly much less important than is claimed by those who want to put all the weight on the leaders' personalities.
The real conflict was between freedom and liberal democracy on one side and the two revolutionary totalitarianisms on the other, as Raymond Aron and K. D. Bracher, among many others, emphasized. The underlying perspective of my own work is part of that tradition, except that I also include the noncommunist and nonfascist authoritarian and sultanistic threats to freedom as part of the political and social history of the twentieth century.
One of the shortcomings of the Handbook essay is that I did not, because of space limitations, consider how nondemocratic political regimes affected other spheres of society: religion, intellectual life, the arts (Antonova and Merkert, 1995; Council of Europe, n.d.), the bureaucracy, and the military, as well as the daily lives of ordinary citizens. My lack of reference to "economic" society was more deliberate, since it would have required a different expertise and probably another book.
If the constant if I had been writing a book rather than a contribution to a Handbook, I would have devoted considerable attention to the relation between political regimes and religion. I have done so in several subsequent essays, mainly on the "national‑catolicismo" in the context of the Spanish authoritarian regime (Linz, 1992a, 1993, 1997a).
While the literature to which I referred in the Handbook made use of the concept of "political religion" or at least noted the pseudo‑religious element in totalitarian politics, I did not incorporate that concept in my analysis. However, two volumes edited by Hans Maier and Michael Schafer (1997a) have reviewed classical writings on totalitarianism, emphasizing this dimension and applying the approach to concrete phenomena. My own contribution to those volumes (Linz, 1997) explores the whole range of relations between political regimes and religion, covering aspects neglected or underdeveloped in the Handbook.
Though I share some of the reservations expressed about the concept of political religion, I probably would agree with several themes linked to the debate on the subject to which Hans Maier (1996) has made an important contribution. One is the fundamental hostility of totalitarian regimes to existing organized religion: the effort to destroy it‑as in the Soviet case ‑ or at least to limit, control, or manipulate religious institutions. This is compatible with pragmatic, cynical, or vague invocations of defending religion, like the "positive Christianity" of the Nazi program or Hitler's invocation of vorsehung (providence). I also would agree that the success of totalitarian movements was greater in secularized societies, and that religious ties resulted in some capacity to resist. And I would accept that, despite the secularization of the fascist regimes, some of their leaders and especially some ideologists used a language and symbolism derived from religious traditions, making them profane.
It is worth notice that a contemporary observer like Thomas Mann perceived the common element of sacralization. Mann wrote in his diary (October 1, 1933):
The honor guard of the Storm Troops posted like statues in front of the Feldherrenhalle is a direct and unabashed imitation of the guard the Russians keep in front of Lenin's tomb. It is the "ideological" arch‑enemy they are imitating‑as they do in their films‑without reflecting, perhaps without even being aware of what they are doing. The similarity, in the style of our time, is far stronger than any rational differences in "ideology." (quoted by Furet, 1999, p. 526)
Even in Italy, as Emilio Gentile (1996) and the more ethnographic study by Mabel Berezin (1997) show, this process went far. Totalitarian regimes tried to fill the emotional vacuum created by secularization with political rituals and liturgies derived from or inspired by religion. What is more difficult to ascertain is to what extent leaders, party organization members, and ordinary citizens succumbed to those pseudoreligious efforts to give meaning to their lives, and the extent to which participation in those rituals evoked feelings comparable to those of religious rituals. I am quite skeptical on the first point, except for the ideologists themselves and some leaders; but I would consider the second quite relevant in understanding the hold of totalitarian movements and regimes on some of their supporters.
Fascism and Totalitarianism
I subscribe to the idea of a generic fascism as a type of political movement, ideology, and style, of which Nazism was a distinct (and even somewhat aberrant) variant. This does not, however, lead me to equate the Nazi and the Italian fascist regimes as a single type of totalitarianism. Some scholars reject any encompassing conception of fascism, though they many emphasize the commonalities among fascist regimes. Others reject the usefulness of any analysis that does not consider each case as unique. Still others conflate ideology, movements, and regimes under the category "fascism" (generally extending it to a wide range of rightist‑conservative‑capitalist antidemocratic parties and regimes). In this regard, the Italian political theorist of the democratic left, Norberto Bobbio, has formulated it well:
"I agree with De Felice; fascism is a historical phenomenon; we can compare it with Nazism in spite of all the differences we know, but we can not attribute the characterization of `fascism' to whatever authoritarian regime. There are dictatorships of a military nature, which insofar as they are autocratic regimes are also opposed to democratic regimes, but they are not fascist" (1996, p. 29).
Paradoxically, those who overextend the term "fascism" come to a position not too different from Ernst Nolte's in Der europdische Burgerkrieg [The European Civil War], which treats the conflict between communism and fascism as the key to European history.5 This position, in contrast to the perspective maintained by Bracher (1976) and myself, forgets that the great conflict in this century was between those two ideological movements and modern liberal democracy based on the rule of law. The recognition of that conflict has been the source of analyses by Aron and Bracher, among many others. In the present book, another intellectual source of the emphasis on the distinctiveness of totalitarianism was my need to describe and understand the whole range of nondemocratic and antiliberal regimes and the differences among them.
The reader of this book and of my essays on fascism will understand that I find myself more in agreement with Franqois Furet in his The Passing of an Illusion than I am with Nolte. The two Western totalitarianisms had their own distinct origins and ideological bases, and it would be a mistake to interpret fascism as a reaction to communism, thereby ignoring its fundamental antiliberalism (as well as other "anti" positions) and its distinctive appeal. In fact, there were fascists in various countries who perceived an affinity with the communist revolution in Russia in their common hatred of liberal, parliamentary, bourgeois‑plutocratic, and victorious democracies; for some, Stalinism was a kindred Russian national revolution..............................................
The Future of Nondemocratic and Illiberal Rule
A question that the reader might pose, and to which I am very hesitant to reply decisively, is: "What is the future of nondemocratic politics at the turn of the millennium?" I can not avoid stressing that we should not be overly optimistic. There have been a significant number of failed transitions to democracy. There is still a lot of uncertainty about the development of Cuba and some of the post-communist Southeast Asian countries, as well as North Korea, where totalitarianism seems to combine with sultanistic elements. The strong sultanistic components of Suharto's authoritarian regime leave a difficult legacy for the transition to democracy in Indonesia. And although China is undergoing some significant processes of liberalization, in my view it is still a post-totalitarian communist regime; contrary to the hopes of many of my colleagues, the emergence of capitalism does not yet assure a transition to democracy.
Totalitarian and Authoritarian Regimes
What probably has changed is that, with one exception, there are no nondemocratic regimes that appeal to intellectuals as there were for those born in the first part of the twentieth century. The one exception is Islamic fundamentalism, which found a first state‑institutional embodiment in the Islamic Republic of Iran.
It is difficult to fit the Iranian regime into the existing typology, as it combines the ideological bent of totalitarianism with the limited pluralism of authoritarianism and holds regular elections in which candidates advocate differing policies and incumbents are often defeated (Chehabi, 1998). In the early 1980s, Iran's Islamic regime held great attraction for Muslim activists worldwide: it seemed to combine popular participation with a commitment to cultural authenticity, the rule of the shari'a, and opposition to Western imperialism. But the inability of the regime to deliver on its promises of a better life for its citizens has led to widespread disenchantment within the country, while the inconclusive ending of the war against Iraq and the growing Shi'ite sectarianism in Iran's foreign policy have dampened enthusiasm for the Iranian model elsewhere in the Muslim world (Roy, 1994).
The failure of the Iranian model of nondemocratic rule to maintain its appeal among Muslims does not mean that other forms of Islamic nondemocratic rule cannot attract adherents. Afghanistan's Taliban, for example, seems to exert an ideological influence that can be detected in such places as the Caucasus. Moreover, the end of ideology, or better, the crisis of ideology, has not, outside of Western Europe, meant the end of the ideological appeal of nationalism, which has led to new forms of ethnocracy, sometimes dressed in democratic form. It is difficult to say whether new forms of nondemocratic rule have emerged, pseudo-democratic, ethnocratic authoritarianism with significant sultanistic strains, particularly in the periphery of the former Soviet Union. We cannot exclude the authoritarian tendencies in some Latin American presidential democracies with strong populist traditions, such as Peru under Fujimori and Venezuela under Chavez. In other parts of the world, the real question is the consolidation and stability of the state under whatever political regime, preventing what could be called chaocracy ‑ the rule of chaos, the mob, mercenaries, militias‑without a central authority with the monopoly of violence.
Class and ideological conflict were the main causes of authoritarianism and totalitarianism in the past. The crisis of ideology‑the defeat of fascism and the disintegration of communist rule in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe‑and the economic revolution in many parts except perhaps for plebiscitarian of the world have reduced those bases of authoritarian responses. However, the salience of nationalism is likely to create, in many multinational states, conflicts leading to authoritarian rule and repression, as is the case when dominant nation‑builders try to integrate ethnic and cultural minorities into a nation‑state (ethnocratic polities) and when different minorities claim the right of national self‑determination and secession. Overpopulation and inequalities in development produce massive migrations that threaten the sense of national identity and economic interests, leading to discrimination and the repression of outsiders. I therefore see in nationalism in its different manifestations one of the main sources of authoritarianism in the future. What is not clear is what institutional forms these authoritarian responses will take.
In a paradoxical way, political and cultural nationalism is a not unlikely response to economic globalization, to the expansion of a worldwide market economy and certain cultural patterns of the consumer society associated with it. While that economic transformation may be necessary, even inevitable, and probably to a large extent (although not for everybody) beneficial, I am not so optimistic about its positive effects in the political realm. Will economic globalization assure the expansion and consolidation of liberal political democracy? I sometimes feel that we might fall into the trap of a "white Marxism" ‑ a belief that a free‑enterprise, liberal economic infrastructure assures the development of a liberal political democracy.
The use of violence‑power "out of the barrel of the gun"‑in the twentieth century created a political order based on an existential and deadly friend‑foe distinction. At the turn of the century, that distinction is still there, in a sense privatized in the hands of independent entrepreneurs of violence who mix personal ambitions, greed, ethnic hatred, and religious fanaticism. Typically, these mobilizers of violence are unable to create political order in a larger political realm, but they are able to resist any effort to subdue them. The result is chaocracy, enclaves of unlimited power without legitimating (true or false) myths. The situations in Liberia, Somalia, Sierra Leone, and Rwanda, the rule of the Tamil Tigers in northern Sri Lanka, to some extent the Taliban in Afghanistan, the guerrillas in Colombia, the KLA in Kosovo (barely checked by NATO and the UN) all approach this model. We are not dealing with states, regimes, political systems, but with something new that certainly has little to do with the types of politics analyzed in this volume.
My present intellectual interests are focused on the comparative study of political democracies in all their varieties, particularly their institutional forms: presidential and parliamentary, unitary and federal, and specifically the relationship of federalism, democracy, and nation. I hope, perhaps believe, that the totalitarian illusion‑temptation‑will not be repeated. But who is to tell whether‑after the failures of real democracies, the existence of many "bad" democracies, the unsolvable problems in many societies‑in a few decades the dream of a homogeneous, egalitarian, conflictless (by eliminating the sources of conflict) polity will be resurrected. The power of the idea of the nation in the context of a world that is globalized economically, and to some extent culturally and politically, could serve as the basis for a new mobilizing effort by a demagogic leadership‑a leadership propelled by resentment and cloaked in a response to the injustice in the world.
As I read the Handbook essay today, I confess that I probably erred in being pessimistic about the possibility of nonviolent transitions to (liberal) democracy and about the spread of democracy around the globe. I would not like to underestimate again the potential for change toward freedom and democracy. However, the title of Democracy's Victory and Crisis (Hadenius, 1997) reflects my own feelings. The growing literature on "defective democracies" (Merkel, 1999) (almost all of them nondemocratic regimes with an electoral façade), delegative democracy, the disillusionment with democracy, and a renewed debate about the quality of democracy (which tends to disregard the enormous gains in freedom and human dignity thanks to even far from perfect democracies) should make us wonder about the "victory" of democracy. Fortunately for all of us, there is (with the exception noted above) for now no alternative form for organizing political life that is attractive to intellectuals, students, young people‑no alternative that is firing their imaginations. Perhaps we have learned the insight of Ho1derlin (1970, p. 607, my translation):
You accord the state far too much power. It must not demand what it cannot extort. But what love gives, and spirit, cannot be extorted. Let the state leave that alone, or we will take its laws and whip them to the pillory! By Heaven! he knows not what his sin is who would make the state a school of morals. The state has always been made a hell by man's wanting to make it his heaven.
1. The reader should keep in mind that the chapters that follow were written at the request of the editors of the Handbook of Political Science, Fred Greenstein and Nelson Polsby. The material therefore is centered on the political dimension of regimes and hence makes only limited reference to such issues as social structure, economic development, economic institutions‑capitalist or socialist‑and religious traditions. I initially was given only a few pages in the Handbook, but I bargained constantly to expand the essay. My argument was that in the other contributions to the six volumes there was almost no reference‑and even less, an extended discussion‑of any aspects of nondemocratic regimes. The chapters on executives and legislatures, on parties, etc,, were focused exclusively on liberal democracies‑at a time when the majority of the world's population was living under nondemocratic rule.
2. 1 have written an essay (in Sollner, 1997) on how I came to formulate the distinction between totalitarianism and authoritarianism. I note there how the term totalitarianism was used in the 1930s in Spain (applied to both communism and fascism by a leftist bourgeois politician) and how Francesc Camb6, a Catalanist politician, formulated a distinction in his wartime diary (published many years later) between totalitarian and authoritarian regimes.
3. Manuel Azana, the leader of the bourgeois left and president of the Republic, wrote in 1937 (in the middle of the Civil War): "When one speaks of fascism in Spain, my opinion was this: There are or may be as many fascists as one may wish. But a fascist regime, there will be none. If the movement of force against the Republic were victorious, we would fall into a military and ecclesiastical dictatorship of the traditional type. For many "watchwords" translated and many labels they might use. Swords, chasubles, military parades and homages to the Virgen del Pilar. On that side the country does not produce anything else." Azana was right, although fascism contributed to the distinctive and, in a way, the modern character of the authoritarian regime. The regime was a failed and largely defeated totalitarian attempt.
4. There has been an extensive literature on the conditions for and the breakdown of democracies, which I cannot review within the scope of this piece. Dirk Berg‑Schlosser and Gisele De Meur (1994) offer an original systematic comparison of different theories, including my own work. A major contribution is Dietrich Rueschemeyer, Evelyne Huber Stephens, and John D. Stephens, Capitalist Development and Democracy (1992).
5. Incidentally, the conflict between fascists (and other authoritarians) and communists (and other revolutionary groups), particularly their militias, could be considered part of a civil war, but not so the extermination of entire social or ethnic groups. A civil war is a violent conflict between two or more groups that are part of the same social or political body. The total exclusion of groups of people as "insects" or a "disease," and their physical destruction, goes beyond civil war. Civil war implies groups fighting, with one perhaps winning, but not a conflict with a defenseless group that has no chance to offer resistance.
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