102 Does Populism Have a Gender?

Wednesday, June 26, 2013: 9:00 AM-10:45 AM
C0.17 (Oudemanhuispoort)
Does Populism have a gender?

There is no shortage of scholarship on populism and populist parties (Bale 2012). To date, the focus has been on the causes behind the rise of populism, on who votes for populist parties, and on the influence of populism on public policy (Mudde 2007; Mudde and Kaltwasser 2012; Rydren 2007). Very little scholarship, however, has focused on gender and populism (Mudde 2007). A core assumption of the existing literature on populism is that populist parties are male parties: they appeal to male voters, they are led by men, and they view the role of men and women from a traditional gender perspective. In other words, they are bound by traditional and conservative images of men and women and of their roles in society.

However, many of these assumptions associated with populist parties have not been tested empirically. No systematic examination of the ideology of populist parties in relation to gender exists. Furthermore, limited research has been conducted on different types of populist parties in relation to gender. For example, do left wing and right wing populist parties frame gender differently? Or do all populist radical right parties agree on gender issues? In addition, much of the research on support for populist parties simply highlights that more men than women vote for the parties in question. Only limited research addresses whether men and women support populist parties for different reasons.

This panel brings together scholars from the field of populism and gender to explore these issues. Three themes frame the panel. First, the papers explore the ideology of populist parties. Asking whether the message of populist parties can be characterized as “male”, “macho”, and whether women are characterized by essentialized categories that appeal to traditional and conventional perceptions of gender. Second, the papers seek to examine whether there is one vision of gender that encompasses all populist parties: left and right populist parties and populist parties in Europe and Latin America. The third theme examines the demand side, focusing on who and for what reason women support the parties in question. The question of whether more men than women support populist parties is revisited? In addition, the papers address whether there are different issues that define men and women support for populist parties. And finally, the question is whether support for different types of populist parties differs regarding gender.

Andrej Zaslove
Kimberly Morgan
“Männerparteien? The Populist Radical Right, Gender and Women Voters.”
Mieke Verloo, IWM, Institute for Human Sciences; Niels Spierings, Radboud University; Andrej Zaslove, Radboud University
Gender and Radical Right-Wing Populism: Ideological Variations Across Parties and Time
Sarah de Lange, University of Amsterdam; Liza Mügge, University of Amsterdam
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