A Review of On Tyranny

Non-Required Reads With Douglas Forsythe

Douglas Forsythe

After several years of wandering through the dark tunnel, we have finally reached the light at the end. Where a man who stood for the very things our country was built to fight against a man who promises to return to those values we stand for now stands. There was once a man who wished to deprive the people of their rights and divide the country no matter the cost. A man now stands, promising to allow anyone to be equal to their neighbors. That we will all be treated as the human beings we are. A man that hopes to nurse our country back to a state of unity. Based on this, I am reviewing a book that describes what we can do to not return to the darkness we traveled through for those long, tedious 4 years. The book in question is On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century by Timothy Snyder. In the book, Snyder posits several ideas that encourage the people of the world to recognize the rise of totalitarianism if they ever face this type of government in their own country. Using examples from Nazi Germany, Stalinist Russia, and Communist Yugoslavia, Snyder can support the ideas he posits. I think everyone should read this novel. Not only is this an important book, with the rise of nationalism in other countries, but also because of what we saw in the United States recently. On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons From The Twentieth Century may have a long title, but the book itself is not very long, coming in at only 126 pages. I was honestly able to read it in less than an hour and a half. Think of it as Common Sense by Thomas Paine for the modern age. I’ll list a few of the chapter titles to give a good idea of what you are diving into. 

  1. Not to Obey in Advance
  2. Defend Institutions
  3. Beware the One-Party State
  4. Take Responsibility for the Face of the World
  5. Remember Professional Ethics

Hopefully, I won’t constantly be going into small political essays and pamphlets for this column. Next time I’ll try to review something a bit more engaging.