Illiberal Politics in Neoliberal Times: Culture, Security and Populism in the New Europe
Title: Illiberal Politics in Neoliberal Times: Culture, Security and Populism in the New Europe
Author: BEREZIN, Mabel
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Citation: Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2009, Cambridge Cultural Social Studies
ISBN: 9780521839136 (Hardback); 9780521547840 (Paperback)
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.
Table of Contents:
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 of defeat: the rise and fall and rise of the French National Front 99 La Fête 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
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