215 Comparative Populism: Europe and the Americas

Friday, July 14, 2017: 9:00 AM-10:45 AM
JWS - Room J7 (J361) (University of Glasgow)
This panel will examine ideologies, organization, and social bases of right- and leftwing populist parties in a comparative perspective.  We intend to compare European cases (Italy, Hungary, Spain) with U.S. (Trump) and Latin American ones (Venezuela, Argentina).

Globalization and the technological revolution generate, in all industrial and industrializing societies, a political cleavage between populist and institutionalist parties. This cleavage, which cuts across the classic one between left and right, is becoming central in many societies. Populist movements and parties, in several countries in Europe, the U.S. and Latin America, combine three traits: an ideology anchored in the conflict between “the people,” defined organically, against domestic elites and foreign governments, supranational bodies, firms, or populations; personalistic leadership and mistrust or outright contempt for established institutional frameworks; and rejection of economic globalization, whose corollary is the espousal of extreme forms of protectionism. Beyond these commonalities, there are differences between Right and Leftwing varieties, the former emphasizing the defense of traditional cultural identity, and sometimes openly antagonistic to immigrants, Muslims in particular. Europe has both types, the new American populism is rightist, and the Latin American one is leftist. In all cases, however, the core social base is similar: segments of the population who feel threatened or have been hurt by globalization and the technological revolution.

Carlos H. Waisman
Discussant :
Peter Kingstone
European Populism: Moving Beyond the Radical Right?
Carlo Ruzza, University of Trento
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