Amid the recent turmoil and polarization in U.S. politics, historian Heather Cox Richardson gained fame for her immensely popular Substack, “Letters from an American.” Richardson has long grappled with questions of how democracy has weakened in the United States and how its citizenry can try to take back control. That topic is the focus of her new book, Democracy Awakening: Notes on the State of America.
How can understanding history help us chart a better path for the future? What does the United States need to do to safeguard its democracy? Are there lessons there for the world?
To answer those questions and more, Richardson joined FP’s Ravi Agrawal for a wide-ranging discussion.
Historian Heather Cox Richardson explains why the New Deal plays such an important role in her new book, Democracy Awakening, and in U.S. political history to this day.
Substack writer and historian Heather Cox Richardson explains how U.S. democracy currently faces a unique and new moment in the country’s history.
Heather Cox Richardson answers FP subscriber questions about the current iteration of the Republican Party.
Watch Heather Cox Richardson explain how she views Joe Biden’s presidency and why she finds some of his policies to be transformative.
FP’s Ravi Agrawal and historian Heather Cox Richardson discuss how the Biden administration has stopped describing the world order as a grand battle between democracies and autocracies. Watch Richardson offer her take on the Biden administration’s foreign policy in both Africa and the global south.
Heather Cox Richardson
Author, Democracy Awakening: Notes on the State of America
Heather Cox Richardson is a professor of history at Boston College. She has written about the Civil War, Reconstruction, the Gilded Age, and the American West in award-winning books whose subjects stretch from the European settlement of the North American continent to the history of the Republican Party through the Trump administration. Her work has appeared in the Washington Post, the New York Times, and the Guardian, among other outlets. She is the co-host of the Vox podcast Now & Then.
Editor in chief, Foreign Policy
Ravi Agrawal is the editor in chief of Foreign Policy, the host of FP Live, and a regular world affairs analyst on TV and radio. Before joining FP in 2018, Agrawal worked at CNN for more than a decade in full-time roles spanning three continents, including as the network’s New Delhi bureau chief and correspondent. He is the author of India Connected: How the Smartphone Is Transforming the World’s Largest Democracy.