Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Fascism: A Warning” as Want to Read:
Fascism: A Warning
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Fascism: A Warning

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  7,974 ratings  ·  1,364 reviews
A personal and urgent examination of Fascism in the twentieth century and how its legacy shapes today’s world, written by one of America’s most admired public servants, the first woman to serve as U.S. secretary of state

A Fascist, observes Madeleine Albright, “is someone who claims to speak for a whole nation or group, is utterly unconcerned with the rights of others, and
ebook, 320 pages
Published April 10th 2018 by Harper
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Fascism, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Mary Hope that we (every democratic country's citizens) will remain diligent to calling out those in power positions when wrongs are done. Yes, it's tiring…moreHope that we (every democratic country's citizens) will remain diligent to calling out those in power positions when wrongs are done. Yes, it's tiring and hard to hear, see, observe, etc. but it's work that cannot go unnoticed.(less)
Richp This question is undated and it is extremely unlikely my answer is timely, but I post it anyway.

Look up her infamous quote "the price was worth it",…more
This question is undated and it is extremely unlikely my answer is timely, but I post it anyway.

Look up her infamous quote "the price was worth it", review how much higher the price (actually cost) is now after more than two decades of additional war, and ask again, was the price worth it. Add, who are you and we, who killed over a million babies and young children, to think any claims of justification by us are valid? This is about the U.S. War against Iraq, for those ignorant of modern U.S. "foreign policy".(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
4.31  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,974 ratings  ·  1,364 reviews

Sort order
Will Byrnes
Consider the testimony of a well-educated but not politically minded German who experienced the rise of the Third Reich:

To live in this process is absolutely not
to be able to notice it—please try to
believe me. . . . Each step was so small,
so inconsequential, so well explained
or, on occasion, “regretted,” that, unless
one were detached from the whole
process from the beginning, unless one
understood what . . . all these “little
measures” that no “patriotic German”
could resent must some day
Jennifer Masterson
Apr 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, audio
4.5 ⭐! I felt like I was taking a history class on Fascism throughout the world. There is a lot of information to digest. A very timely book especially since she ties in Trump and Putin. High school teachers should make this required reading in my opinion.

I listened to the audio. I think hearing the book read by the author, Madeleine Albright, made my experience with this book even more powerful.

I will definitely read more books written by her in the future.

Highly recommended!
Bill  Kerwin
May 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, politics, memoir

Have you ever looked at President Trump when he juts out his jaw in a pursed-lip scowl, and said to yourself: my God, look at him, he's a dead ringer for Mussolini? Have you then listened to what he says, and come to realize that he sounds a lot like Mussolini too?

In this focused and disciplined book, Madeleine Albright draws upon her experience. In foreign affairs (as National Secirity Council member, United Nations ambassador, and first woman Secretary of State), as well as her memories as a c
Madeleine Albright is an extremely clever, balanced and well-informed person. There's a lot of interesting stuff in this book, but the core question is the one you'd expect from the title: is Donald Trump a fascist? Albright, as noted, is clever and balanced, and she gives a clever and balanced answer: no, of course he isn't, but. It's the "but" that constitutes the warning.

Albright, who was born in Czechoslovakia in 1937, sets the bar high when it comes to using the word "fascist". She's seen w
Apr 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, politics
"It is easier to remove tyrants and destroy concentration camps than to kill the ideas that gave them birth."
Harry S. Truman

Madeleine Albright knows a bit about Fascism. Her family was forced to flee Czechoslovakia twice, before finally emigrating to the U.S. in 1949. Her maternal grandmother was murdered in a Nazi concentration camp. She has studied international relations, taught history, and served as Secretary of State. When she issues a warning, it should be heeded.

This book, she claims, w
Nov 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"What makes a movement Fascist is not ideology but the willingness to do whatever is necessary - including the use of force and trampling on the rights of others - to achieve victory and command obedience."

Facism: A Warning is a sobering and chilling look at the state of the world today, written by a woman who knows all too well the dangers inherent in Facism. Ms. Albright opens the book with a discussion of just what Fascism is and of its beginnings in 1920s Italy with Mussolini and then 1930
Mar 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Received this ARC from Westwinds Bookshop, Duxbury, MA
A timely read. Easy to understand.
Recommend it to a High School student- our future voters should be aware of fascism and its followers.
Sep 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: politics, usa, 2018-read
Full disclosure: Since reading Albright's memoir "Madam Secretary", I highly respect her for her determination and the sacrifices she made to stand up for her beliefs. Born 1937 in Prague, she and her family have experienced the Third Reich and the rise of the UdSSR, and as a European, I have always appreciated that she - both with her mind and her heart - understands that we are a continent living with a myriad of consequences stemming from a 2,000-year-history of war.

I applaud Albright for poi
Gary Moreau
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh how I wanted to rate this book a 6.

This is a timely book by a brilliant person who had a front row seat to the tragedy that was Europe in the Mid-20th Century. There is little doubt that the world is starting to look fearfully like it did at the beginning of those dark hours, starting with the tyranny of Hitler and Mussolini and culminating in the Cold War and the gulags of the Soviet Union.

Figuratively speaking, this is really three books. The first will be the most divisive and may, in fac
Lubinka Dimitrova
It's funny how the same person can give us such a clear-sighted analysis of the various faces of fascism throughout the world, and still remain blind to the shortcomings and injustices perpetrated by their own "regime". And be THAT blunt about it:

"I tell my students that the fundamental purpose of foreign policy is elementary: to convince other countries to do what we would like them to do. To that end, there are various tools at our disposal, which range from making polite requests to sending i
Jul 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: us-policy
I was disappointed. The book gives neither a clear description of fascism nor a solid warning. Fascism is presented through discussions with her students and sketches of authoritarian leaders. The warning is couched in words like I’m an optimist but I “don’t like what I see”.

The book is still worth reading since the students have some good insights and (while most people who read this book will know how Hitler, Mussolini and other despots came to power) there are some interesting details and ane
Donna Backshall
Albright weaves her personal history with the history of the rise of fascism in Italy with Benito Mussolini and in Germany with Adolf Hitler in the early 20th century, then moves to more contemporary foreign affairs and dictators. She speaks from her own experience, while relating facts surrounding each fascist's rise to power, and later drawing from her time as Secretary of State.

As she progresses through 20th century history, it is impossible not to draw comparisons between the fascist leaders
Monica Kim: Reader in Emerald City
A Fascist, observes Madeleine Albright, “is someone who claims to speak for a whole nation or group, is utterly unconcerned with the rights of others, and is willing to use violence and whatever other means are necessary to achieve the goals he or she might have. — Madeleine K. Albright, Fascism: A Warning
I’m not sure what I was expecting nor whether I was going to enjoy it (although that sounds inappropriate) when I started reading madam Albright’s “Fascism: A Warning,” given the seriousness o
Owlseyes on notre dame, it's so strange a 15-hour blaze and...
Will We Stop Trump
Before It’s Too Late?
Fascism poses a more serious threat now than
at any time since the end of World War II.


Check here:
"So next time you hear someone label Trump a fascist, educate them."

and here:

and here:

Apr 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A brilliant book that is written in a conversational tone; reading it feels like sitting at the feet of a favorite teacher. Each chapter profiles a Fascist or autocratic leader from history and the conditions that led to the rise of his power - Mussolini, Hitler, Chavez, Erdogan, Putin, etc. What was striking to me were the comparisons to Trump - not stated but obvious nonetheless. For example, it was Mussolini that first used the phrase, “drain the swamp” and Hitler who bragged about telling ou ...more
Pam Gary
Apr 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"Drain the Swamp" was an expression used by Mussolini, not an original from Trump. Actually Mussolini said "drenare la palude". (Drain the Swamp). I'm gravely concerned (it makes me cringe) when I hear the President of the United States adapting an expression used by a Fascist leader.

Madeleine Albright's Fascism: A Warning, should be taken seriously. It is an overview of the history of Fascism throughout the world, individual profiles of Mussolini, Hitler, Franco, Chavez, Putin, Kim Jong-un, an
Karen Witzler
Jul 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: social-sciences, in-l
Former Secretary of State Albright gives a good overview of 20th century European fascism and relates it to our present crisis. Better than I expected.
Dec 31, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, politix
Madeleine Albright explains how fascism hides in plain sight from the outset. Mussolini, for instance, was a fierce socialist as well as an atheist, displaying an aversion towards nationalism, opposing Italy's entry into WWI. It all began with him, a former elementary school teacher, in some crowded cellar, promoting his hateful rhetoric. Neither was the entry of Hitler, an aimless drifter full of rage against others, by any means grand. Only when dramatic events, fueled by feelings of deep- sea ...more
Donald Powell
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is an excellent book. I cannot remember a more balanced, thoughtful, insightful and objective discussion of governance than this work. It is impossible to paraphrase the discussion in a review, it should be read. Education generally and regarding particular issues is an essential lesson. Being involved and speaking out is another. There are so many lessons in this short book I will be mulling the ideas, hopefully, forever. This is a history book but with some analysis that is smart, balance ...more
Chris Wolak
Apr 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A history of fascism highlighting how it often creeps in with men who’ve been legally elected. A warning that Albright had planned on writing regardless of who was president. A warning to help heat up people’s love of democracy. A warning that it could happen here. I’m not willing to bet it can’t happen here. Are you?
Paul Szydlowski
Apr 29, 2018 rated it liked it
This would have received a two-star rating were it not for the last few chapters. Until then, former Secretary of State Madeline Albright's book spent far too much time on the "what" of fascism, detailing the already well-known horrors and threats of demagogues past and present, including Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, Erdogan and Duterte. That space would have been much better spent on the "how" and "why" of their rise to power - how did a Hitler or Stalin persuade followers to carry out the unspea ...more
Diana Long
Apr 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing

The author has served her adopted country in several different areas previously and is highly qualified to stand by what she has written in this work. In the first chapter is an introduction to Fascism and the proper use of the term as it relates to past and present governments. Also she gives a brief glimpse into her early years and why this information is so very important especially at this time. The next chapters gives the history of Benito Mussolini and how he came to power in
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Listening to Albright narrate her book was like visiting with her over a cup of tea. She described her families fleeing the Nazis and later the Soviets. Her personal story of her encounter with fascism made the book more relevant than just an academic textbook would have been.

The book is well written and researched. I learned a lot from the book. To me it seemed Albright had trouble fitting in some of the current leaders as true fascists and was attempting to mode
via Publisher's Weekly, 3/5/18: "Yes, it can happen here... After probing accounts of the fascist models of Mussolini's Italy and Hitler's Germany, she finds that toxic brew in present-day Venezuela, Turkey, Hungary, Poland, Russia, North Korea, and right-wing parties generally. And then, she writes, there's Donald Trump, 'the first anti-democratic president in modern U.S. history,' whose bluster, 'paranoid bigotry' against Muslims and immigrants, America-firstism, and rhetorical attacks on the ...more
Peter Mcloughlin
The content is not novel for the times but the fact that this book has been written by an Clinton cabinet member of the foreign policy establishment should give us pause that she is worried that we are sliding into fascism under Trump. The sane parts of our country know what is happening and now bland elite policy wonks are using the F-word. Heed well.
Titus Hjelm
Tyranny: A Warning? Anti-Democracy: A Warning? I didn’t really know what to expect from this book, but it is not (only) about fascism. In fact, Nationalism: A Warning, would have been an accurate description as well, but either the author or the publisher was too timid to call it that. Granted, there are bits of popular history about fascism in here, but soon the gallery descends into ‘Whoever has opposed the US in the past’: A Warning. Albright completely lost me at ‘Soviet-style fascism’—somet ...more
Sep 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Albright's book is a well- organized and frightening wake-up call. She fastidiously builds her case by detailing the rise to power of regimes such as Hitler, Mussolini, Orban, Erdogan, Chevez, Milosevic, Franco, Tito, Putin, Kim-Jong-un and others. The rhetoric of a leader is important. From Mussolini's campaign slogan, "drenare la palude" (drain the swamp), to his claim that, "Only one person in Italy is infallible. I would like to be wrong, but so far it hasn't happened" (definitely not what h ...more
Helga Cohen
Jul 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a timely book by Madeleine Albright. She knows a lot about Fascism. In this intensive book, Albright focuses on her experience in foreign affairs as National Security Council member, United Nations ambassador, and the first woman Secretary of State and also her memories as a child refugee from Czechoslovakia. She gives a history of fascism in the 20th century and warns about its dangers to the world and especially to America in the age of Trump.

She begins with its origins with the rise o
Apr 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018
An excellent book. Well written, well thought out, erudite, interesting. Madeleine Albright traces the history of fascism from WWI to the present time, including the leaders and governments of nations around the globe. A great history lesson! At age 80, Madeleine Albright is sharp and canny, her intellect undiminished by her age. Indeed, the book is made better by the lessons she learned from her own life experiences, which you don't gain overnight. This is a timely book, and one worth reading f ...more
Apr 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
A tour through fascism from Mussolini to the incipient fascism of Donald Trump. Madeleine is worried, you should be too.

Here's hoping our institutions hold, but fascism comes creeping, it doesn't explode on the scene. Donald may be only the latest inch-along in the creep. Remember when that stood for Committee to Re-elect the President? Maybe that was a warning - hohoho.

Anyway, a quick read, interesting private and public history, and as timely as 45.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
  • It's Even Worse Than You Think: What the Trump Administration is Doing to America
  • Facts and Fears: Hard Truths from a Life in Intelligence
  • Strange Gods: A Secular History of Conversion
  • The Assault on Intelligence: American National Security in an Age of Lies
  • Trumpocracy: The Corruption of the American Republic
  • One Nation After Trump: A Guide for the Perplexed, the Disillusioned, the Desperate, and the Not-Yet Deported
  • The Pact: Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich, and the Rivalry That Defined a Generation
  • War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence
  • Messing with the Enemy: Surviving in a Social Media World of Hackers, Terrorists, Russians, and Fake News
  • How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us and Them
  • Where Will I Live?
  • The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia
  • Every Day is Extra
  • Cutting School: Privatization, Segregation, and the End of Public Education
  • American Dreamers: How the Left Changed a Nation
  • Smuggler Nation: How Illicit Trade Made America
  • Directorate S: The C.I.A. and America's Secret Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan
  • Facing the Wave: A Journey in the Wake of the Tsunami
Madeleine Korbel Albright (born Marie Jana Korbelová) was the first woman to become United States Secretary of State. She was nominated by President Bill Clinton on December 5, 1996 and was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate 99-0. She was sworn in on January 23, 1997.
“The real question is: who has the responsibility to uphold human rights? The answer to that is: everyone.” 19 likes
“Good guys don’t always win, especially when they are divided and less determined than their adversaries. The desire for liberty may be ingrained in every human breast, but so is the potential for complacency, confusion, and cowardice. And losing has a price.” 18 likes
More quotes…