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What History Reveals About Our Future. Democracies die in three stages: the election of an authoritarian leader, the concentration and abuse of governmental power and finally, the complete repression of opposition and citizens. The first step was taken by the US with the election of Donald Trump; we must all learn how we can prevent all three. From how General Augusto Pinochet dramatically seized power in Chile in 1973 to the quiet undermining of Turkey's constitutional system by President Recip Erdogan, Harvard professors Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt draw insightful lessons from democracies in crisis across history.