Modernizations and Its Discontents

  • Richard Javad HeydarianEmail author


It discusses the unlikely electoral success of Rodrigo Duterte, a provincial mayor with limited resources, who astutely tapped into widespread grievance among a disillusioned electorate, which was fed up with broken promises of the liberal oligarchy. Drawing on the works of Hannah Arendt, Karl Polanyi, and Samuel Huntington, among other leading thinkers, it analyzes how Duterte’s brand of right-wing populism—dubbed as “Dutertismo”—gained traction in a booming economy like the Philippines. The chapter places the rise of Duterte within a broader wave of populist ascendancy across Asia and beyond, as the liberal establishment failed to inspire public support and cope with new challenges of globalization.


Grievance politics Populism Hannah Arendt Samuel Huntington Karl Polanyi 


  1. Acemoglu, Daron and James Robinson. Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty. New York: Crown Publishing, 2012.Google Scholar
  2. Afary, Janet, and Kevin Anderson. Foucault and the Iraniann Revolution: Gender and the Seductions of Islamism. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010.Google Scholar
  3. Akyol, Mustafa. “Coming Soon: Edrogan ‘The Chief’.” Last date modified February 2017.
  4. Ansari, Ali. Confronting Iran: The Failure of American Foreign Policy and the Next Great Crisis in the Middle East. New York: Basic Books, 2007.Google Scholar
  5. Arendt, Hannah. The Origins of Totalitarianism. San Diego: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, 1973.Google Scholar
  6. Casiple, Ramon. “The Duterte Presidency as a Phenomenon.” Contemporary Southeast Asia: A Journal of International and Strategic Affairs 38 no. 2 (2016): 179–184.
  7. Chandra, Kanchan. “Authoritarian India: The State of the World’s Largest Democracy.” Foreign Affairs (2016).
  8. Cloudhury, Suvashree, Rupam Jain, and Rajesh Kumar Singh. “Inside the ‘constant quibbling’ and drama that led to India’s central bank chief’s departure.” Last date modified June 19, 2016.
  9. Coronel, Sheila. “‘I Will Kill All the Drug Lords’ The Making of Rodrigo Duterte.” The Last modified September 20, 2016.
  10. De Jong, Alex. “The Philippines’ New Strongman.” Jacobinmag,com. Last modified May 28, 2016.
  11. Diamond, Larry. “Democracy After Trump: Can a Populist Stop Democratic Decline?” Foreign Affairs (2016).
  12. Dizon, Nikko. “Forbes to Aquino: US needs you.” Last modified October 15, 2015.
  13. Fanon, Franz. The Wretched of the Earth. Reprint Ed. New York: Grove Press, 2005.Google Scholar
  14. Ferguson, Niall. “Populism as a Backlash against Globalization- Historical Perspectives.” Horizons 8 (2016).–issue-no-8/populism-as-a-backlash-against-globalization.
  15. Fitzgerald, Francis Scott. The Beautiful and the Damned. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1922.Google Scholar
  16. “Friendship goals: Miriam, Duterte exchange praises, not barbs at debate.” GMA Last modified February 21, 2016.
  17. Fukuyama, Francis. The Origins of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012.Google Scholar
  18. Fukuyama, Francis. “American Political Decay or Renewal? The Meaning of the 2016 Election.” Foreign Affairs (2016).
  19. Habermas, Jürgen. The Theory of Communicative Action Volume 2: A Critique of Functionalist Reason. Translated by Thomas McCarthy. Boston: Beacon Press, 1985.Google Scholar
  20. Heydarian, Richard. “Philippines’ Moralpolitik: Good Governance and Aquino’s Legacy.” Last modified 2015.
  21. Heydarian, Richard. “Philippines’ Competition Conundrum: A Nation of Oligopolies, Dynasties and Autocratic Nostalgia.” Last modified August 19, 2016.
  22. Heywood, Andrew. Politics. 4th ed. London: Palgrave, 2013.Google Scholar
  23. Huntington‚ Samuel. “Democracy’s Third Wave.” Journal of Democracy 2‚ no. 2 (1991): 12–34.Google Scholar
  24. Inquirer. “Aquino endorsement power-26 in Metro.” Last modified December 8, 2015.
  25. Jaymalin, Mayen. “Unemployment, low wages push Pinoys to work abroad.” Last modified July 30, 2015.
  26. Kagan, Robert. “This is how fascism comes to America.” The Washington Post. Last modified May 18, 2016.
  27. Kaplan, Robert. The Revenge of Geography: What the Map Tells Us About Coming Conflicts and the Battle Against Fate. New York: Random House Trade Paperbacks, 2013.Google Scholar
  28. Keenan, Jillian. “The Grim Reality Behind the Philippines’ Economic Growth.” The Last modified May 7, 2013.
  29. Kinzer, Stephen. All the Shah’s Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Terror. 2nd ed. Hoboken: Wiley, 2008.Google Scholar
  30. Liljas, Per. “Here’s Why Some Indonesians Are Spooked by This Presidential Contender.” Last modified June 12, 2014.
  31. Lirio, Gerry. “Is Philippines ready for a state burial for Marcos?.” Last modified March 14, 2016.
  32. Lutwak, Edward. “Why Fascism is the Wave of the Future”. London Review of Books 16 no. 7 (1994): 3–6.Google Scholar
  33. Mangahas, Mahar. “Baseline trust ratings of Duterte and Robredo.” Last modified June 11, 2016.
  34. Marszal, Andrew. “Arundhati Roy caught in the crossfire of Indian judicial power struggle.” The Telegraph. Last date modified February 6, 2016.
  35. Martin, Kathleen. “In latest CNN Money data: Philippines 4th fastest-growing economy in 2015.” Last modified August 4, 2015.
  36. McCurry, Justin. “Abe defends Japan’s secrets law that could jail whistleblowers for 10 years.” The Guardian. Last date modified December 10, 2014.
  37. McCurry, Justin. “Japanese TV anchors lose their jobs amid claims of political pressure.” The Guardian. Last date modified February 17, 2016.
  38. Mead, Walter Russel. “The Jacksonian Revolt: American Populism and the Liberal Order.” Foreign Affairs (2017).
  39. Mishra, Pankaj. “What’s Behind the Rise of Demagogues?.” Bloomberg,com. Last modified May 31, 2016.
  40. Mishra, Pankaj. Age of Anger: A History of the Present. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2017.Google Scholar
  41. Pamuntjak, Laksmi. “Jokowi, we voted for a humble man. Now you’ve taught a new generation about killing.” The Guardian. Last modified May 5, 2015.
  42. Pikkety, Thomas. Capital in the Twenty-First Century. Cambridge: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2014.Google Scholar
  43. Pikkety, Thomas. “We must rethink globalization, or Trumpism will prevail.” The Guardian. Last modified November 16, 2016.
  44. Polanyi, Karl. The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origins of our Time. 2nd ed. Boston: Beacon Press, 2001.Google Scholar
  45. Power, John. “History by fiat? South Korea’s Park pushes conservatives schoolbooks.” The Christian Science Last modified November 1, 2015.
  46. Ranada, Pia. “A look at the state of crime, drugs in the Philippines.” Last modified January 5, 2016a.
  47. Ranada, Pia. “Rody Duterte: The man, the mayor, the president.” Last modified June 29, 2016b.
  48. Reich, Robert. “How Capitalism is Killing Democracy.” Foreign Policy. Last modified October 12, 2009.
  49. Ressa, Maria. “Propaganda war: Weaponizing the internet.’’ Last modified October 3, 2016.
  50. Rieffel, Lex. “Lessons for Myanmar in Indonesian politics.” Last modified November 22, 2016.
  51. Sabillo, Kristine. “Aquino admin’s last net satisfaction rating ‘very good’- SWS.’’ Last modified August 15, 2016.
  52. Sharma, Ruchir. Breakout Nations: In Pursuit of the Next Economic Miracles. 1st ed. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2013.Google Scholar
  53. Teehankee, Julio, and Mark Thompson. “The Vote in the Philippines: Electing A Strongman.” Journal of Democracy 27 no. 4 (2016): 124–134.
  54. The Economist. “Slowly does it.” Last modified February 25, 2016.
  55. Tiglao, Rigoberto. “Aquino the worst President ever: He damaged our institutions.” The Manila Times. Last modified July 26, 2015.
  56. Viray, Patricia. ‘’Philippines drops 10 notches in global corruption index.” Last modified January 27, 2015.
  57. “War of words.” The Economist. Last modified August 21, 2014.
  58. Williams, Sean. “Rodrigo Duterte’s Army of Online Trolls.” New Last modified January 4, 2017.
  59. Žižek, Slavoj. “Trouble in Paradise.” London Review of Books 35 no. 14 (2013): 11–12.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.New Manila, Quezon CityPhilippines

Personalised recommendations