Seymour Martin Lipset

Birch and Barry
June 21, 2010

Washington—Barack Obama's campaign promise of change did not include a pledge to transform American conservatism.

After the Tsunami
March 12, 1998

Until the East Asian miracle went up in a cloud of smoke, most East Asian specialists and comparative political scientists were optimistic about the prospects for democracy in the region. That's because nearly everyone subscribed to the “modernization thesis” first proposed by Stanford University Professor Seymour Martin Lipset in 1959. According to this thesis, economic development produces a new urban middle class--professionals, entrepreneurs, managers, and so on--motivated to challenge authoritarian rule.