Advertisement

Introduction

Populism: The Concept and Its Definitions
  • Annie Benveniste
  • Giovanna Campani
  • Gabriella Lazaridis
Chapter

Abstract

The aim of this chapter is to look at populism as a concept and its historical evolution across Europe, acknowledging some of the limitations, most notably its extreme fragility and chameleon-like qualities. It discusses its usage and style (populist narrative). It concentrates by and large on right-wing populism and views populism as a narrative rather than a distinct ideology, a form of an argument that pits an in-group (us) against an out-group (them). It illustrates how the rest of the book is structured: providing examples from interview material carried out with populist political parties and groups in eight EU member states (Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, France, Greece, Italy, Slovenia and the UK), we reveal a ranging of ‘othering’ discourses and practices that encompass both minority groups such as migrants, Muslims and the LGBT community, and the political elites (in some cases, anti-elitism was as strong a focus for populist narratives as ‘othering’ behaviours); in each chapter we look at their target groups and commitments to recruiting and/or influencing young people in particular, and raise questions about the capacity of young people to contextualise the kinds of populist arguments they many encounter online.

The introduction will show how timely and important is the topic addressed in this book: the (re-)emergence of rightist populism across Europe. Each country chapter contains original data in the form of face-to-face interviews with party activists and followers, and with focus groups from non-governmental organisations (NGOs), pro-migrant and pro-LGBT organisations, and explores their activities combating right-wing populist hate speech and crime. The strength and novelty of this book lies in its in-depth analysis of the rise of far-right populism, of the challenges it poses and of the way civil society and the state in different countries are developing ‘anti-bodies’ to combat this phenomenon.

Keywords

European Union Political Party Hate Crime Hate Speech Populist Parti 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Anderson, B. (1991). Imagined communities. Reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism. London: Verso.Google Scholar
  2. Blokker, P. (2005). Populist nationalism, anti-Europeanism, post-nationalism, and the East-West distinction. German Law Journal, 6(2), 371–389.Google Scholar
  3. Bourdieu, P. (1972). Esquisse d’une théorie de la pratique. Genève, Switzerland: Librairie Droz.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Canovan, M. (1982). Two strategies for the study of populism. Political Studies, 30(4), 544–552.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Canovan, M. (1999). Trust the people! Populism and the two faces of democracy. Political Studies, 47(1), 2–16.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Canovan, M. (2002). Taking politics to the people: Populism as the ideology of democracy. In Y. Mény & Y. Surel (Eds.), Democracies and the populist challenge (pp. 25–44). Gordonsville, VA: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Canovan, M. (2004). Populism for political theorists? Journal of Political Ideologies, 9(3), 241–252.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Chiantera-Stutte, P., & Petö, A. (2003). Cultures of populism and the political right in Central Europe. CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture, 5(4), 2–10.Google Scholar
  9. Crick, B. (2002). Democracy: A very short introduction. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Deze, A. (2004). Lectures critiques. Revue française de science politique, 54(1), 179–199.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Diamanti, I. (2010). Italianieuropei, Giovedì 14 Ottobre 4, online version. Retrieved from http://www.italianieuropei.it/it/la-rivista/ultimo-numero/itemlist/user/984-ilvodiamanti.html
  12. Einhorn, B. (2009). European citizenship or narrow nationalisms? The challenge of gender (ISET Working Paper 10). Unpublished working paper, London Metropolitan University.Google Scholar
  13. Gellner, J. (1983). Nations and nationalism. Oxford, England: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  14. Germani, G. (1975). Authoritarianism, fascism, and national populism. American Journal of Sociology, 119(2), 590–596.Google Scholar
  15. Golden, D. (2003). A national cautionary tale: Russian women newcomers to Israel portrayed. Nations and Nationalisms, 9(1), 83–104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Helander, V. (1971). Populismi ja populistiset liikkeet. In V. Helander (Ed.), Vennamolaisuus populistisena joukkoliikkeenä (pp. 12–21). Finland, Helsinki: Hämeenlinna.Google Scholar
  17. Hirschman, A. (1970). Exit, voice, and loyalty: Responses to decline in firms, organizations, and states. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  18. Laclau, E. (2005). On populist reason. London: Verso.Google Scholar
  19. Liakos, A. (1989). Peri laikismou [On populism]. Historica, 10, 13–28.Google Scholar
  20. Mouselis, N, Lopowatz, T., & Spourdalakis, M. (1989). Laikismos kai Politiki [Populism and politics]. Athens, Greek: Gnosi (in Greek).Google Scholar
  21. Mudde, C. (2007). Популисткият Zeitgeist в днешна Европа [The populist Zeitgeist in today’s Europe]. Critique and Humanism Journal, 23, 115–119.Google Scholar
  22. Mudde, C., & Rovira Kalwasser, C. (2013). Exclusionary vs. inclusionary populism: Comparing contemporary Europe and Latin America title. Government and Opposition, 48(2), 147–174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Pappas, T. S. (2013). Populist democracies: Post-authoritarian Greece and populist Hungary. Government and Opposition, 49(1), 1–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Pelinka, A, (2013) ‘Eight-wing populism: concept and typology’ in Wodak, R., KhosraviNic, M. and Mral, B. (eds) Right-wing populism in Europe, London: Bloomsbury.Google Scholar
  25. Pels, D. (2012). The new national individualism—Populism is here to stay. In E. Meijrs (Ed.), Populism in Europe (pp. 25–46). Linz, Austria: Planet.Google Scholar
  26. Priester, K. (2012). Rechter und linker Populismus. Annäherung an ein Chamäleon. Frankfurt, Germany: Campus.Google Scholar
  27. Reisigl, M. (2002). “Dem Volk aufs Maul schauen, nach dem Mund reden und Angst und Bange machen”. Von populistischen Anrufungen, Anbiederungen und Agitiationsweisen in der Sprache österreichischer PolitikerInnen. In W. Eismann (Ed.), Rechtspopulismus (pp. 149–198). Wien, Austria: Czernin.Google Scholar
  28. Smilov, D., & Krastev, I. (2008). The rise of populism in Eastern Europe: Policy paper. In G. Mesežnikov, O. Gyárfášová, & D. Smilov (Eds.), Populist politics and liberal democracy in Central and Eastern Europe (pp. 7–13). Bratislava, Slovakia: Institute for Public Affairs.Google Scholar
  29. Smith, A. D. (1991). National identity. London: Penguin.Google Scholar
  30. Sternhell, Z. (2012). Ni droite ni gauche, l'idéologie fasciste en France [Neither right nor left: Fascist ideology in France] (Folio histoire no. 203). Paris: Gallimard Collection.Google Scholar
  31. Taggart, P. A. (2000). Populism 1. Buckingham, England: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  32. Taguieff, P.-A. (1984). La rhétorique du national-populisme. Mots, 9, 113–139.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Taguieff, P.-A. (1997). Le populisme et la science politique : du mirage conceptuel aux vrais problèmes. Vingtième siècle, 56, 4–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Winock, M. (1990). Nationalisme, antisémitisme et fascisme en France. Paris: Editions du Seuil.Google Scholar
  35. Wittgenstein, L. (1953). Philosophical investigations. Oxford, England: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  36. Wodak, R. (2015) The Politics of Fear: What right-wing populist discourses mean, London: SageGoogle Scholar
  37. Zaslove, A. (2008). Here to stay? Populism as a new party type. European Review, 16(3), 319–336.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Annie Benveniste
    • 1
  • Giovanna Campani
    • 2
  • Gabriella Lazaridis
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Educational ScienceUniversity of Paris VIIISaint-DenisFrance
  2. 2.Department of Education and PsychologyUniversity of FlorenceFlorenceItaly
  3. 3.University of LeicesterLeicesterUK

Personalised recommendations