Authoritarian Regime


Is characterized by a highly concentrated and centralized power maintained by political repression and the exclusion of challengers. It uses political parties and mass organizations to mobilize people around the goals of the regime and the balance of the power rests deeply on lies, fears and economic prosperity. In order to keep authoirty an authoritarian regime uses social controls, in combination with the deprivation of civil liberties, to stifle civil society and keep them under thumb. This control is maintained with the support of, and control over, the armed forces as well as mass socialization and centralized indoctrination. The most important goal of an authoritarian regime is to maintain power and to enrichment the country. The legitimacy of an authoritarian state is deeply rooted in performance so, an authoritarian state that fails to adapt, choosing instead to use tighter controls and restrictions, can be open to collapse or revolt. * *An authoritarian regime contrasts with a totalitarian regime (which is an extreme version of authoritarianism) in that they don’t necessarily have AS rigid a state ideology and still allow SOME amount of freedom (e.g. economic and cultural) provided their rule is not jeopardized.

*Examples of authoritarian regimes include: Franco’s Spain (1936-1975), Egypt under Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, North Korea under the Kim Dynasty, Syria under Bashar al-Assad, Venezuela under Chavez, Salman the current King of Saudi Arabia and Robert Mugabe the current President of Zimbabwe. There could be a serious case made for Vladimir Putin of Russia also being an authoritarian leader (though he’s considered a mix between authoritarian and “managed democracy”) just as the Chinese communist party is considered “fragmented authoritarianism”. *