Fascism, ethnic cleansing, and the ‘new militarism’ : assessing the recent historical sociology of Michael Mann

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)


For over 30 years, Michael Mann has been engaged in a project of impressive span and erudition: a historical sociology of power from ancient civilizations to the modern era. This essay examines Mann's recent contributions to this enterprise, namely, two major books on fascism and ethnic cleansing, and a third text devoted to the putative ‘militarist’ security policy of the United States. The review's argument is that, for all Mann's learning, his historical sociology of fascism is over‐generalized and his concept of democracy (key to his discussion of ethnic cleansing) is too vague. Mann's polemic against the current Bush administration is also found wanting, principally for its moral evasions. The essay concludes with a reminder of the hard choices that responsible politicians, as distinct from academics free of political responsibility, are compelled to make.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-113
Number of pages15
JournalCritical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007


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