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Rethinking Populism: Peak democracy, liquid identity and the performance of sovereignty

Blühdorn, Ingolfur and Butzlaff, Felix (2018) Rethinking Populism: Peak democracy, liquid identity and the performance of sovereignty. European Journal of Social Theory. pp. 1-21. ISSN 1368-4310

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Despite the burgeoning literature on right-wing populism, there is still considerable uncertainty about its causes, its impact on liberal democracies and about promising counter-strategies. Inspired by recent suggestions that (1) the emancipatory left has made a significant contribution to the proliferation of the populist right; and (2) populist movements, rather than challenging the established socio-political order, in fact stabilize and further entrench its logic, this article argues that an adequate understanding of the populist phenomenon necessitates a radical shift of perspective: beyond the democratic and emancipatory norms, which still govern most of the relevant literature. Approaching its subject matter via democratic theory and modernization theory, it undertakes a reassessment of the triangular relationship between modernity, democracy and populism. It finds that the latter is not helpfully conceptualized as anti-modernist or anti-democratic but should, instead, be regarded as a predictable feature of the form of politics distinctive of today's third modernity.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: liquid identity, peak democracy, politics of exclusion, second-order emancipation, simulative politics, third modernity
Divisions: Departments > Sozioökonomie > Gesellschaftswandel und Nachhaltigkeit
Version of the Document: Published
Variance from Published Version: None
Depositing User: Felix Butzlaff
Date Deposited: 09 Feb 2018 10:05
Last Modified: 09 Feb 2018 10:36
Related URLs:
FIDES Link: https://bach.wu.ac.at/d/research/results/85202/
URI: http://epub.wu.ac.at/id/eprint/6060


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