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Social origins of dictatorship and democracy

The peasantry remained thereafter a reservoir of reactionary attitudes.n the United States, the industrial north’s victory over the Southern planter elite in the Civil War cemented the U.S. path to modernity through liberal democracy, but only after southern planters “acquired a tincture” of urban business – essentially changing their attitudes towards capitalist accumulation. The result, however, was that once this transformation took place, the Northern capitalists ended Reconstruction and allowed the South to implement Jim Crow.Moore also directly addressed the Japanese transition to modernity through fascism and the communist path in China, while implicitly remarking on Germany and Russia.For Moore, the influence of the bourgeoisie in Japan was significantly more limited than in England, France, and the U.S. Instead of the capitalist accumulation through the “bourgeois impulse” as it did in those three cases, Japan’s late transition to industrial modernity was induced through “labor repressive” agriculture – squeezing the peasantry to generate the necessary capital for modernization. This “revolution from above” served to cement a reactionary alliance of a weak bourgeoisie and powerful landowners that culminated in fascism.In China, the overwhelming strength of the peasantry vis-a-vis the bourgeoisie and the landed elites resulted in the Chinese Revolution, but they were its first victims.