INTR 215 Populism in 21st Century Politics
- Spring 2019
Populism is central to current debates about politics, from radical right parties in Europe to left-wing presidents in Latin America to the Tea Party, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump in the United States. But populism is also one of the most contested concepts in the social sciences. The first part of the course will discuss how scholars from different parts of the world studied populism since this phenomenon entered the political and social science agenda in the late 1960s. What distinguishes its various manifestations in Europe, Latin America, the United States, and elsewhere across time (old vs. new populisms), region (western vs. eastern; but also Nordic, Baltic, and Southern European), regime type in which they develop (democracy vs. non-democracy), and ideological hue (right vs. left populisms)? A second part of this course will look at actual populist strategies, how populist leaders gain their appeal, what social conditions increase the likelihood of a populist victory, how populists gain and maintain power. Cases such as Hungary, Greece and Venezuela are studied in order to understand the way in which populism comes to power and governs.