The Concept of Populism in Modern Anglo-Saxon and German Political Science

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Abstract


The article examines and compares main approaches to defining populism in modern Anglo-Saxon and German political science. The author points out some similarities between two schools: increasing interest of research communities in the USA, United Kingdom and Germany in examining right-wing populism due to the electoral success of right-wing populist parties. Furthermore, among the key features of populism, both schools see the allusion to “the will of the people”, as well as juxtaposition of “the people” against “the elite”. The article emphasizes the existing reciprocal influence of the two research traditions. On the other hand, the author outlines certain differences in the two schools’ approach to populism, such as historical dissimilarities in its interpretation (in the USA the concept used to bear a more “neutral” character, while in German political science, due to the Nazi regime carryover, it was regarded mostly negatively for a long time). Also, German academic works on populism have applied rather than theoretical nature and aim at stopping the expansion of the phenomenon.


About the authors

Dmitry Y. Meshcheryakov

Moscow State Institute of International Relations (University) Under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

Author for correspondence.
Email: dmesh91@gmail.com
76 Vernadsky Avenue, Moscow, Russian Federation, 119454

PhD Student at the Department of Comparative Politics, Moscow State Institute of International Relations (University) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

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