In an industry first, VINTAGE is publishing the whole text of On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century by Timothy Snder in a poster installation on Leonard Street (London, EC2A) for 1 week from Monday 27th March as a tool, a provocation and a rallying call. The posters have been designed by Suzanne Dean, Creative Director at VINTAGE and her team in collaboration with students from the Graphic Design course at Kingston University as part of an ongoing artistic partnership.

On Tyranny

This book is an attempt to convert dark experience into enlightened resistance, and as such it is an homage to my teachers and to their teachers, people who experienced Nazism, fascism, and communism. Just as the text reaches back through the decades of the twentieth century, so too do these remarkable artists refer to the styles of the period, in their own way rendering homage as they communicate.

On Tyranny

Stuart Williams, Publishing Director at The Bodley Head, said:

On Tyranny

It’s hugely inspiring to see a brilliant idea realised in such a creative, collaborative way. Every one of these posters is individually striking and their collective impact is going to turn heads and concentrate minds on Timothy Snyder’s indispensable book.

On Tyranny

Suzanne Dean, Creative Director at VINTAGE said:

On Tyranny

Each chapter has been interpreted by a different designer. This gives each poster in the series its own visual character. It was the sort of project that would benefit from different voices. It was an opportunity. I asked the Head of Graphic Design at Kingston University, Rose Gridneff, if she might have students willing to get involved in this project. The students were briefed. The designers in-house were briefed. We each had a few days to complete our poster. For the VINTAGE design team we suddenly had a very different proposition in scale, from our usual book cover. When a poster was printed out, to actual size, it covered the wall of my office.

William Smith, Creative Manager at VINTAGE said:

On Tyranny

On Tyranny doesn’t make you feel better about the current state of the world, but it does make you feel less helpless. We’re very excited to make such a crucial book available to the public in this disruptive way. Many thanks to Jack Arts, without whom we couldn’t have made this project a reality.

  • On Tyranny


    A sort of survival book, a sort of symptom-diagnosis manual in terms of losing your democracy and what tyranny and authoritarianism look like up close’ Rachel Maddow

    'These 128 pages are a brief primer in every important thing we might have learned from the history of the last century, and all that we appear to have forgotten' Observer

    History does not repeat, but it does instruct.

    In the twentieth century, European democracies collapsed into fascism, Nazism and communism. These were movements in which a leader or a party claimed to give voice to the people, promised to protect them from global existential threats, and rejected reason in favour of myth. European history shows us that societies can break, democracies can fall, ethics can collapse, and ordinary people can find themselves in unimaginable circumstances.

    History can familiarise, and it can warn. Today, we are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to totalitarianism in the twentieth century. But when the political order seems imperilled, our advantage is that we can learn from their experience to resist the advance of tyranny.

    Now is a good time to do so.

  • Buy the book

Read more

We use cookies on this site to enable certain parts of the site to function and to collect information about your use of the site so that we can improve our visitors’ experience.

For more on our cookies and changing your settings click here

Strictly Necessary


Preferences & Features

Targeting / Advertising