A New European Narrative in the Face of Rising Populism

Sertan Akbaba

Abstract


The populist discourse is gaining more and more ground in Europe. Thanks to the right-wing parties, there is a ubiquitous populism haunting the European continent. This populist discourse is a deep counter challenge to the much internalized narratives of Europe. It is clear that with the alarming rate of politics of fear alongside hate speeches, Europe is in a contradiction with its core values. More importantly, attention must be paid to the consistent and mainstream positioning of this discourse, establishing itself in the name of protecting the identity. Understanding party politics rests on cleavages either on center-periphery, urban-rural, state-church or owner-worker. However, currently we are witnessing a decline of these cleavages, which is opening up more space for a rising cleavage between the opponents and proponents of identity re-construction. As an outcome the European continent is synonymously associated with the terms ‘differentiation’, ‘ascription’ and ‘externalization’.  This argument is analyzed through the right-wing Populist Parties which were once perceived as marginal and located on the fringe, however currently occupying and dominating the political arena and questioning what kind of a meta-narrative for Europe is to be established.

Key Words: Europe, Populism, Right-wing parties, Political discourse

*This work is supported by Ahi Evran University, Scientific Research Projects Coordination Unit, Project No: IIB.E2.17.032


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