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Gideon Rachman Dialogue | Munk Debates

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February 14, 2023

Gideon Rachman Dialogue

The Age of the Strongman

About this episode

2022 was not a great year for the world’s so-called “strong men”. The defeat of Bolsonaro in Brazil, the political isolation of Donald Trump, the military miscalculations of Putin and the disastrous COVID policies of Xi Jinping has weakened the hold these men had over their parties and institutions. On this episode of the Munk Dialogues, we’re joined by chief foreign affairs columnist for the Financial Times, Gideon Rachman, whose latest book, The Age of the Strong Man, was named one of the top books of 2022 by The Economist and Foreign Affairs Magazine. He argues that while the trend towards autocracy has slowed, and the people living in autocratic regimes like Iran and China have shown a desire for freedom, the spread of communications technology is making overthrowing dictators much more difficult.


The Guests

Gideon Rachman

Gideon Rachman

Gideon Rachman is chief foreign affairs commentator for the Financial Times. He writes a weekly column for the FT and hosts an international-affairs podcast. His main interests include geopolitics in Asia, US foreign policy and the future of the EU.  

Rachman has won the Orwell Prize for journalism (2016) and was also named commentator of the year in the European Press Prize awards in 2016.  

He has written two books on international politics – Zero-Sum World (2011) and Easternisation (2016). He is also a regular public speaker, appearing before both academic and business audiences.