Mike-Frank Epitropoulos, John Markoff
August 15, 2017
From its beginnings in eighteenth-century revolution through the great global wave of democratizations that began in the 1970s, the term “democracy” has been used in many different ways but always referred to a form of self-rule of a defined people on a defined territory. The very obvious web of transnational interconnection had by the late twentieth century raised important questions about what democracy could mean in the global era. Everyday speech in Greece has for several decades been taking note of this by referring to the President of the United States as the Planetarch, a major figure whom they had no role in selecting. We use interviews from just before the elections of 2008 that brought Barack Obama to office to explore what Greeks mean by this term and conclude by showing that it provides a framework for them to talk about his successor, President Donald Trump, as well.