DESPOTISM CONNOTES autocracy, the absolute rule of one or a select group and exercise of power without imposed limits. The word is closely associated with a host of other concepts, including tyranny, domination, absolutism, dictatorship, oppression, and servitude. In politics, it refers to a specific model of governance regarding the ability to make others do what one wants them to do despite their possible opposition.

Despots come into a position of power in a number of different ways: seizing power through inheritance (the cases of Roman Emperors Caligula and Nero), through military means and then legitimizing their position once in power ex post facto (the case of Roman Emperor Augustus), and through revolution and bloodshed (Josef Stalin following after Vladimir Lenin in the new Soviet Union), ...

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