Illiberal Politics in Neoliberal Times: Culture, Security and Populism in the New Europe

Illiberal Politics in Neoliberal Times: Culture, Security and Populism in the New Europe

by Mabel Berezin
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

ISBN-10: 0521839130

ISBN-13: 9780521839136

Pub. Date: 03/31/2009

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

The rise of rightwing populism has brought into question prevailing assumptions in social science about multicultural Europe. In this compelling study of populist politics, Mabel Berezin argues that the emergence of the movement in the 1990s was a historical surprise rather than an expected event. She questions whether rightwing populism would exist in the absence

Overview

The rise of rightwing populism has brought into question prevailing assumptions in social science about multicultural Europe. In this compelling study of populist politics, Mabel Berezin argues that the emergence of the movement in the 1990s was a historical surprise rather than an expected event. She questions whether rightwing populism would exist in the absence of the Maastricht Treaty and the subsequent intensification of cultural and economic Europeanization. Using an innovative methodology, Berezin analyzes the French National Front in relation to the broader context of Europeanization and globalization. She unpacks the political and cultural processes that evoke the thin commitments characterizing citizen support, and shows that we cannot make sense of rightwing populism without considering the historical legacies and practices, both national and international, within which it arises. This book makes a novel argument about the relationship between democracy and political and social security.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521839136
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
03/31/2009
Series:
Cambridge Cultural Social Studies Series
Pages:
324
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

List of illustrations x

List of tables xii

Acknowledgements xiii

List of acronyms xvii

Introduction: The rightwing populist moment as historical surprise 1

Prologue: Festa del Lavoro, 1984, Turin, Italy 1

Old Europe, new Europe and the postwar "world of security" 5

The rightwing populist moment as historical surprise: the argument in brief 8

The rightwing populist moment refracted through the prism of culture and history 11

Part I Situating the rightwing populist moment 15

1 Cinderella in the polis: rightwing populism as historical phenomenon and political concept 17

The European right in time and space 17

Italian elections March 1994: a pivotal event for political legitimacy 22

The populist moment: an excursus on political nomenclature 26

The ephemera of nomenclature and the landscape of European populism 28

2 Experience and events: reformulating the rightwing populist moment 37

Why reformulate? 37

Comparing social science approaches to the contemporary European right 40

National experience: the legacy of a relation between people and polity 45

Shifting the methodological focus: events as templates of possibilities and sites of collective evaluation 54

Part II The trajectory of thin commitments: France and the National Front 59

3 Beginning on the margins: the French first! 61

Ascendance (1983-1994): early successes and outrageous remarks 61

The city strategy 73

Summary 78

4 "Neither right nor left: French!" The campaign for political normalcy 79

Mobilization: Strasbourg March 1997 79

Counter-mobilization: the lessons of Strasbourg 90

Summary 96

5 The paradox ofdefeat: the rise and fall and rise of the French National Front 99

La F&ecap;te des Bleu-Blanc-Rouge: September 1998 99

Banalisation (1998-1999): anyone can be French 104

The end of the beginning: 1999 116

Summary 124

6 The 2002 presidential elections: the fabulous destiny of Jean-Marie Le Pen 126

Amélie and ennui: popular culture and political mood in summer 2001 126

Climbing back (2000-2002) 131

Shock and shame: the first round of the 2002 presidential elections 141

Summary 163

7 The "new" April 21: from the presidential elections to the referendum on the European constitution 167

Dédiabolisation: "people like me" 167

The campaign for the constitution 170

Appropriating the "non": events as political metaphor 182

Summary: the multiple meanings of "non" 191

Part III Theorizing Europe and rightwing populism 197

8 Reasserting the national against Europe: politics and perception 199

Shocking events as templates of possibility 199

The multiple contexts of the shocks of April 21, 2002 and May 29, 2005 208

Thinning borders and thickening identities 216

9 Discovering the national in Europe 221

Italy in the shadow of France 221

The past in the present: resisting fascism and affirming democracy 226

Ending World War II in 1994: to whom does April 25 belong? 229

Italian spring 2002: looking inward to the piazza and outward to France and Europe 231

The strength of weak Italian identities 234

Conclusion: The future of illiberal politics: democracy and security 243

Reprise: a comparative historical sociology of the present 243

Experience and political perception 250

Bibliography 259

Index 297

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >