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Neoliberals thought capitalism would bring about democracy, civil liberties, and human rights everywhere. But that is fast becoming an illusion, particularly in the East, where traditionalist and nationalist leaders are attracting religious, rural, or newly urban constituencies and ushering in an era of illiberal democracies. Peer, who was born in Kashmir and wrote with passion and intelligence about his native land in his acclaimed first book, Curfewed Night, reports from two of the world's largest democracies--Narendra Modi's India and Recep Tyyip Erdogan's Turkey--and examines how two charismatic strongmen came to power and moved their country in the direction of authoritarianism.
Basharat Peer is the author of Curfewed Night: One Kashmiri Journalist's Frontline Account of Life, Love, and War in His Homeland, which was published to acclaim by Scribner in 2010. Born in Kashmir in 1977, Peer's work has appeared in The Guardian, The Nation, New Statesman, Financial Times Magazine, n+1, and Columbia Journalism Review. He has worked as an editor at Foreign Affairs and served as a correspondent at Tehelka, India's leading English-language newsweekly. Peer studied journalism and politics at the Columbia School of Journalism. He lives in New Delhi.