Call for Papers:
Psychohistorical/Psychoanalytic Explorations of the Threats to U.S. and World Democracies

(Articles are to be 500-2,500 words including a brief abstract, keywords, & bio.)
Papers to be submitted by June 15th for the Fall 2024 issue

Dear Colleagues,

Democracy is threatened and recently weakened in both the U.S. and around the world. In America, the Republican Party has become the party of the Trumpian election deniers with its candidate speaking of becoming a dictator for a day. Unless we go back to ancient Republican Rome, I can’t think of any successful time limits on dictators! In fact, it was the dictators, specifically the generals, who finally destroyed the Roman Republic. The attacks on democracies take many forms, especially when they are weak or in name only.

In his early days of ruling the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin had portrayed himself to the German parliament as a good European democrat before proceeding to step by step destroy the fledgling Russian democracy. The Hungarian Victor Orband has effectively turned his country into an authoritarian state. Narendra Modi, the Hindu nationalist Prime Minister, is busily eroding Indian civil liberties, weakening its democracy. Recep Tayyip Erdogan has weakened Turkish democracy so much that the family of a student I (Paul Elovitz/PHE) mentor won’t dare return to their homeland because the father will immediately be put in jail for simply supporting a former ally of the Prime Minister turned dictator. I could continue with numerous examples ad nauseam.

We humans have gained such power over the earth that fantasy becoming reality is part of our modern world. With our incredibly diverse ways of communication with no one or two authoritative news outlets being generally accepted in America, Trumpian lies and those of the other dictators he so admires have seriously weakened our democratic processes. For this special issue on the psychology and political psychology of threats to democracy, I would like you to consider writing about threats around the entire planet as well as in the U.S. For the International Psychohistorical Association (IPhA), I’ve (PHE) organized a panel examining dangers to democracy that not many years ago were viewed by a lot of us as the inevitable future. I’ve asked the five presenters to write about the threats to French, Polish, Russian, and

U.S. democracy. My (PHE) personal focus will be on the appeals of MAGA and threats to the sense of national and personal identity as a result of the repitive of changes in our society. The dangers of an open border is what crystalizes these threats to Trump and other Right-wing leaning politicians in Europe and elsewhere.

We would like to invite you and other colleagues to probe the political psychology, psychohistory, and psychobiography of our subject for the Fall 2024 issue of Clio’s Psyche: Understanding the “Why” of Culture, Current Events, History, and Society.

We welcome different types of submissions, especially case studies, with psychoanalytic/ psychohistorical/psychological insights on a variety of aspects of the election such as:

  • Psychobiographical explorations of DeSantis, Trump, and those like them
  • The remaking of the responsible Republican Party as the nihilistic party of Trump
  • Psychobiographical/psychopolitical explorations of dictators & would-be dictators
  • The joys of supporting MAGA and its equivalents elsewhere
  • Why my (PHE) frustrated postal clerk said he would jump off the George Washington Bridge if Trump was not elected in 2016
  • Comparisons of Trump and other would-be dictators with Franco Hitler, & Musolini
  • A comparison of the threats to democracy in the S. with 1920s Weimar Germany
  • How the worldwide environmental crisis is creating mass movements of people and dangers that make democratic countries more vulnerable to fearmongering
  • How the democratization of communication has strengthened alarmist fears
  • Why S. voters have favored less qualified newcomers over the experienced
  • What happened to the traditional values of millions of Christian voters who are far more concerned with the policy result than with the immoral Trump as the messenger?
  • Examples of the projection of success and strength being more important than its reality
  • Why S. Republican voters care so little or not at all about foreign policy?
  • The flaws in S. democracy and how specifically they can be healed politically
  • Psychobiographical insights from the autobiographies, books, and speeches of dictators and would-be dictators
  • Psychohistorical reviews of major works on threats to democracy

We are seeking articles from 500-2,500 words—including an abstract (up to 50 words), seven to ten keywords (hyphenation is okay), and your brief biography ending in your email address—by June 15, 2024, for the Fall issue that we hope to mail in August. (Note that the IPhA presenters have been previously given a 3,000 word limit and a May 15, 2024, deadline.) Some longer (up to 3,000 words, which will be held to a higher standard) are welcome. A special (up to 3,500 words) article received by April 30th will be refereed early and may become the basis of a symposium. An expression of interest now, and then an abstract or outline by April 30th, would be helpful. Papers should be e-mailed as attached Microsoft Word (docx or doc) documents or rich text (rtf) files. Submissions the editors deem suitable are anonymously refereed. Once you’ve sent in your submission, please refrain from making any further changes.

We are open to all psychological/psychoanalytic and psychoanalytically informed political psychological approaches and prefer that articles be personalized (consider your own transference and countertransference feelings in writing), without psychoanalytic/psychological terminology or jargon, and with our modified APA style but without foot/endnotes. Indeed, we discourage citations except where there are quotations or they are otherwise essential. Our website (cliospsyche.org) provides guidelines (cliospsyche.org/guidelines) for authors.

One of our veteran editors and referees has made the excellent point that authors need to be self-editing their submissions, bearing in mind that Clio is a journal based on psychology that is moderate in tone and words. Please be moderate in your language while avoiding technical terminology. However, should an author with strong countertransference feelings approach their subject with clear-cut therapeutic insight as an Eriksonian participant observer, then their submission will receive careful consideration. You can get a better sense of our approaches by visiting our website at www.cliospsyche.org where you can find issues from 1994 to within two years of the present.

For those who are not familiar with our publication and its sponsor, Clio’s Psyche is entering its 30th year of publication by the Psychohistory Forum, a 42-year-old organization of academics, therapists, and laypeople holding regular scholarly meetings in Manhattan and at international conventions. We seek to publish thought-provoking, clearly written articles usually based upon psychoanalytic/psychological insight, developed with examples from history, current events, and the human experience.

We hope you can join this important endeavor. Many of our members and subscribers tell us that they find our publication to be a lively, compelling read that provides in-depth analyses. Please forward this Call for Papers to any colleagues (including associations or electronic mailing lists) who may be interested. If you have any questions, please e-mail me at cliospsycheeditor@gmail.com.

Sincerely yours, Paul and Inna

Paul H. Elovitz, PhD, Historian, Research Psychoanalyst, Online Psychohistory

Professor, Psychohistory Forum Director, and Editor, Clio’s Psyche; Author, The Making of Psychohistory: Origins, Controversies, and Pioneering Contributors (Routledge,

2018); Editor, The Many Roads of the Builders of Psychohistory (ORI Academic Press, 2021); Author/Editor of other books and about 400 other publications. See CliosPsyche.org for additional information.

Inna Rozentsvit, MD, PhD, Associate Editor of Clio’s Psyche and Director/Convenor of the Psychohistory Forum; Founder of NeuroRecovery Solutions, Inc.; Founder & Editor-in-Chief & ORI Academic Press, MindConsiliums, and MindMend Publishing; Programs Director @ the Object Relations Institute, NYC. E-mail: inna.rozentsvit@gmail.com