Tyranny of the Majority: Lessons From Tocqueville and Antiquity-Will Ogilvie

The AIER Standard

Jun 30 2022 • 37 mins


On this episode of the AIER Standard, Ethan Yang sits down with Will Ogilvie to discuss the threat of the tyranny of the majority and the upkeep of a free, democratic society as observed by the great Alexis de Tocqueville. Will is a Long Term Research Fellow at AIER and a professor at Universidad Francisco Marroquín in Guatemala. Ethan and Will discuss the benefits and dangers inherent to societies that uphold equality and collective governance. Will explains that although freedom and equality enable human flourishing, they also enable mob rule and despotism. The conversation covers a number of topics highlighted by Tocqueville's observations of 19th century America as well as the thoughts of political philosophers dating back to Ancient Greece. Throughout the conversation, Will explains how private associations help channel the forces of democracy toward productive ends and away from the tyranny of the majority.