Introduction: Wind of Change: Podemos, Its Dreams and Its Politics
This chapter provides an introduction for the volume. We do that by framing the Spanish political group Podemos as both a product and an agent of a more general political cycle, thus opening up to a perspective that takes into account its historical specificity as well as suggesting the need for a comparative analysis with similar experiences. Accordingly, we first offer a brief account of Podemos’ genealogy and the political context in which emerges and operates. Second, drawing on Tarrow’s ‘cycle of protest,’ we understand Podemos’ development in two phases, the moment of ‘madness’ and the moment of ‘institutionalization.’ Third, we consider Podemos’ ideological positioning vis-à-vis several thinkers, such as Gramsci, Laclau, and Mouffe. Fourth, we contextualize Podemos in the wide-ranging international dynamics of left-wing populism. Finally, in the last section we discuss the structure and content of the book.
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