Manaswini Ramkumar


School of International Service, American University


Prof. Cathy Schneider

Academic Interests:

Civil-Military Relations
Comparative Politics
Indian Colonial History


Call of Duty: Military Responses to Undemocratic Leadership

Bio Note:

Manaswini's research interest is at the intersection of civil-military relations and comparative politics. Her dissertation is concerned with investigating how democratically-elected but authoritarian civilian leaders use the military to subvert democracy. When the military gets an unconstitutional order from a duly elected civilian leader, both the act of following the order or disobeying it furthers democratic subversion. How the military responds to undemocratic civilian leaders carries implications for democratic stability. By examining the relationship between the Indian military and civilian decision-makers during Indira Gandhi's authoritarian rule, she hopes to explain the military's understanding of democracy. Prior to beginning her PhD, Manaswini worked as an Associate Research Fellow at the Institute of Defense and Strategic Studies in Singapore and as a lecturer in Professional Military Education to the Singapore Armed Forces.

Updated June 2021

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