[310] Do Not Obey In Advance

Completion Date: 05 March 2020
Medium: Paint on MDF
Dimensions: 77 X 38 inches

Lesson 1 in Timothy Snyder’s 2017 book Twenty Lessons on Fighting Tyranny from the Twentieth Century.

[1] Do not obey in advance. Most of the power of authoritarianism is freely given. In times like these, individuals think ahead about what a more repressive government will want, and then offer themselves without being asked. A citizen who adapts in this way is teaching power what it can do.

Snyder is an American author and historian specialising in the history of Central and Eastern Europe, and the Holocaust. He is the Richard C. Levin Professor of History at Yale University and a Permanent Fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna.