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Series 4

Episode 3: Dictators and Despots

Duration: 1 hour

First broadcast: on BBC FourLatest broadcast: on BBC Four HD

In recent years the world has become an unsettling place, from the mass movements of refugees to political upheaval, both in this country and abroad.

Disturbingly, history shows that it's at unsettled times like these that dictators can rise - leaders who promise they can solve every problem, if only they're granted supreme power.

David Olusoga examines fifty years of BBC documentary archives to try and discover why dictators can have such a powerful appeal.

David uncovers the surprising optimism felt by the West towards men like Gaddafi and Mugabe early in their regimes, and examines the events that turned this optimism into horror. He questions why such men continue to fascinate us regardless of their actions, and asks whether, especially in an age of mass media, our fascination has fed their power. Show less


David Olusoga
Jan Plamper
Joanna Lewis
Executive Producer:
Emma Parkins
Andy Webb
Andy Webb
Andy Webb
Production Company:
360 Production

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