NPR

Readers Rankled By 'Democracy In Chains' Review

What obligation does NPR have to follow up on a controversial book post-review?
Source: Jessica Diaz-Hurtado

On June 18, NPR published an online-only review of Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right's Stealth Plan for America, a newly published nonfiction book by Duke University historian Nancy MacLean. NPR's reviewer praised the book for revealing a "clear and present danger" to the future of the country (the review is prominently excerpted on the book's Amazon page); reviewers at other publications did, as well.

About 10 days after the review was published, critics began raising complaints about MacLean's scholarship, ranging from charges she had misquoted some of those she cited to deeper questions about how she (and praise) at , a opinion blog that calls its writers "generally libertarian, conservative, centrist, or some mixture of these, though we don't toe any party line, and sometimes disagree even with each other." While many of the critics of the book are libertarians, criticism has also come from some in the center and .

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from NPR

NPR3 min readSociety
Opinion: Report On Racism, But Ditch The Labels
I understand the moral outrage behind wanting to call the president's tweets racist. But I disagree.
NPR3 min readPolitics
This Economic Theory Could Be Used To Pay For The Green New Deal
Liberal Democrats have embraced an obscure brand of economics — "Modern Monetary Theory" — to make the case for deficit-financed government programs like the Green New Deal for clean energy and jobs.
NPR3 min read
Residente, Bad Bunny And iLe Share Puerto Rico Protest Song 'Afilando Los Cuchillos'
Amid the most crucial political crisis to hit Puerto Rico in its modern history, Puerto Rican artists Residente, Bad Bunny and iLe respond with music in real time.