The second half of the twentieth century and the beginning of the twenty-first century have witnessed an unprecedented expansion of one-party autocracies. One-party regimes have become the most common type of authoritarian rule and have proved to be more stable and to grow faster than other types of authoritarianism. We review the literature on one-party rule and, using data from 1950–2006, suggest four avenues for future research: focusing on autocrats' ability to simultaneously minimize threats from the elites and from the masses; focusing on the conditions that foster the establishment and the collapse of one- party regimes and on transitions from one type of authoritarianism to another; focusing on the relationship between authoritarian elections and democratization; and focusing on the global and international forces that influence the spread of one-party rule.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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