International Populism: The Radical Right in the European Parliament

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Oxford University Press, Jan 15, 2020 - Political Science - 208 pages
The 2014 European Parliament elections were hailed as a "populist earthquake," with parties like the French Front National, UKIP and the Danish People's Party topping the polls in their respective countries. But what happened afterwards?

Based on policy positions, voting data, and interviews conducted over three years with senior figures from fourteen radical right populist parties and their partners, this is the first major study to explain these parties' actions and alliances in the European Parliament. International Populism answers three key questions: why have radical right populists, unlike other ideological party types, long been divided in the Parliament? Why, although divisions persist, are many of them now more united than ever? And how does all this inform our understanding of the European populist radical right today?

Arguing that these parties have entered a new international and transnational phase, with some trying to be "respectable radicals" while others embrace their shared populism, McDonnell and Werner shed new light on the past, present and future of one of the most important political phenomena of twenty-first-century Europe.


1 International Populism
2 Radical Right Populists and Group Formation in the European Parliament
3 European Conservatives and Reformists
4 Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy
5 Europe of Nations and Freedom
6 Radical Right Populists Inside and Outside the European Parliament
7 From International Populism to Transnational Populism
List of Interviewees

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About the author (2020)

Duncan McDonnell is Professor of Politics at Griffith University, Australia. His extensive writing on right-wing populism includes Twenty-First Century Populism; Populists in Power; and Saving the People: How Populists Hijack Religion. Annika Werner is a research fellow at Griffith University, focusing on party behavior, representation, and public attitudes in Western democracies

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