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The Rule of Law and its Enemies - The Human Hive

BBC Reith Lecture

Niall Ferguson’s Reith Lecture 2012 series, entitled The Rule of Law and its Enemies, will demonstrate that historical change in the modern period – from economic growth to democratization – has been driven mainly by institutions: those complex, man-made organisations that lie somewhere between great men and impersonal historical forces. Ferguson’s lectures aim to push beyond naïve ideas about the success of capitalism and democracy over the past two centuries, and especially in the years since the Cold War. He will deliver the lectures in London, Edinburgh and New York, with audience contributions from the Middle East.

In this first lecture, The Human Hive, to be delivered at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) Ferguson takes as his starting point a graffito on a wall in post-Gaddafi Libya which roughly translates as: “We want a constitutional role and for the president to have less authority and the four year presidential term should not be extended.” This sounds bizarrely precise as a revolutionary slogan. But, Prof Ferguson argues, whoever wrote it had the right idea. Overthrowing a dictator and holding elections are necessary but not sufficient steps towards a free society. The devil lies in the constitutional detail.

The second lecture is entitled The Darwinian Economy. The Landscape of Law is the title of the third lecture, and Professor Ferguson's fourth and final lecture is entitled Civil and Uncivil Societies.

Ferguson, born in Glasgow, is Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University, Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University and a Senior Research Fellow at Jesus College, Oxford. The author of a dozen books, he specialises in financial and economic history, as well as the history of empires. Ferguson has written and presented many major television series, most recently China: Triumph and Turmoil.

The Reith Lectures 2012 will be recorded in June and broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and the BBC World Service from June-July.

More information about the Reith Lectures| including recordings of past Reith Lectures can be found online.

Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #Reith


Professor Niall Ferguson | talks | www
Chair: Sue Lawley | talks


Date and Time:

7 June 2012 at 6:30 pm


1 hour 30 minutes



LSE Campus, venue TBC to ticket holders
London School of Economics and Political Science
Houghton Street

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Organised by:

London School of Economics & Political Science
See other talks organised by London School of Economics & Political Science...




Available from:

This event is free and open to all however a ticket is required, only one ticket per person can be requested.

Members of the public, LSE staff, students and alumni can request one ticket via the online ticket request form which will be live on this listing after 10pm on Wednesday 30 May until at least 12noon on Thursday 31 May. If at 12noon we have received more requests than there are tickets available, the line will be closed, and tickets will be allocated on a random basis to those requests received. If we have received fewer requests than tickets available, the ticket line will stay open until all tickets have been allocated.

LSE students and staff are also able to collect one ticket per person from the New Academic Building SU shop, located on the Kingsway side of the building from 10.00am on Thursday 31 May. These tickets are available on a first come, first come basis.

Event weblisting: http://www2.lse.ac.uk/publicEvents/events/2012/06/20120607t1830vLSE.aspx

Additional Information:

From time to time there are changes to event details so we strongly recommend that if you plan to attend this event you check the listing for this event on the LSE events website on the day of the event.

For any queries email events@lse.ac.uk|.

Media queries: please contact the Press Office if you would like to reserve a press seat or have a media query about this event, email pressoffice@lse.ac.uk

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