Article

Clarifying a Contested Concept: Populism in the Study of Latin American Politics

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Abstract

Populism has traditionally been defined as a cumulative concept, characterized by the simultaneous presence of political, economic, social, and discursive attributes. Radial concepts of populism offer a looser way of spanning different domains. Criticism of modernization and dependency theory, which assumed tight connections between different domains, and the emergence of new types of personalistic leadership that lack some traditional attributes of populism have made cumulative and radial concepts of populism problematic. Populism can be reconceptualized as a classical concept located in a single domain, politics. Populism can be defined as a political strategy through which a personalistic leader seeks or exercises government power through direct, unmediated, uninstitutionalized support from large numbers of followers.

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... Geçmiş dönemdeki araştırmalara baktığımızda popülizm hem bir ideoloji, hem bir sosyal hareket ve hem de bir sendrom olarak tartışılmıştır (Canovan, 1982;Ionescu ve Gellner, 1969;Berlin ve ark., 1968). Bugün de popülizmin bir ideoloji (Mudde, 2007), strateji (Weyland, 2001), söylem (Laclau, 2005) veya tarz (Moffitt ve Tormey, 2014) olup olmadığı tartışması sürmektedir. ...
... Popülistler gerçek demokratlar olarak milli iradeyi gaspeden elitlerden geri almayı amaçlamaktadır. Popülist lider, bu sebeple sıradan halkın tek kurtarıcısı, şeytani düşmanlardan koruyucusu olmakla birlikte konuşması, hayat tarzı ve davranışları ile de sıradan halktan biri olarak yaşamaktadır (Albertazzi ve McDonnell, 2008;Weyland, 2001;Canovan, 1999). ...
... Sorunların çözümünde başvurulması gereken halk iradesi her zaman haklıdır (Mudde, 2010;Hawkins, 2010). Milli iradenin sesini duyurması için yetersiz kalan temsili demokrasi yerine popülistler, plebisitler ve referandumların yanında büyük mitinglere ve kamuoyu yoklamalarına büyük önem atfetmektedirler (Weyland, 2001). Burada İttihat ve Terakkicilerin popülizminin geliştirmiş olduğu halk kavramı aslında köylü halkına denk gelmektedir (İlgazi, 2002, s. 161;Toprak, 1992, s. 56;Altan, 2005, ss. ...
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Bu çalışma, popülist eğilimlerin Osmanlı İmparatorluğu'nun son döneminden günümüz Türkiye siyasetine kadar hangi liderler ve partiler tarafından ne şekilde benimsendiğini araştırmaktadır. Bu amaçla çalışmamızın kurgusu popülizmi zayıf-merkezli bir ideoloji olarak kabul etmektedir. Görgül zenginliğe olanak sağlayan bu tanımlamanın ışığında Türkiye'deki popülizmin tarihi millet (halk), elitler ve milli irade kavramları çerçevesinde irdelenmiştir. İncelememiz Türkiye'deki popülizmde üç ayrı "halk" kavramını gözlemlemektedir. Bunlar, solda 1970'ler Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi'nin benimsediği "sıradan insanlar;" merkez sağ partilerin 1950'lerden itibaren takip ettiği "milli irade" ile "halkın aklıselimi" ve sağda 1969 itibariyle Milli Görüş ideolojisinin benimsediği "İslam milleti" tanımlamalarıdır. Türkiye'deki popülizm, milletin (halkın) karşısına yerleştirilen elitlerin tanımına siyasal partilerin muhalefette-iktidarda olup olmamalarına ve ideolojik sağ-sol yönelimlerine göre farklılık göstermektedir. Yakın dönemde ise Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi, Demokrat Parti ve Adalet Partisi çizgisini ve Milli Görüş'ün yaklaşımını harmanlayarak Türkiye popülizmine yeni bir kimlik kazandırmıştır. Bu bağlamda, milletin (halkın) karşısındaki elit tanımı iç siyasetteki dışlayıcı-otoriter yöneticilerden uluslararası siyasetteki dış düşmanlara ve onların iç siyasetteki işbirlikçilerine endekslenmiştir. Sonuçta, incelememiz Türkiye'deki popülist eğilimlerin siyasette sadece belli bir parti ve ideolojiye ait olmadığını tarihsel bir bütünlük içerisinde sunmaktadır. Bu teorik temelli tarihsel bütünlük aynı zamanda diğer nicel ve nitel vaka analizlerine de önemli bir kaynak sağlayacaktır. Millet (halk), elitler ve milli irade kavramlarının tarih içerisinde ve siyasal sağ-sol ideoloji yelpazesinin neredeyse her yerinde geçirmiş olduğu gelişimi ortaya koymanın diğer karşılaştırmalı çalışmalara da hem kuramsal hem de görgül katkılarda bulunacağını düşünmekteyiz.
... We adopt Collier and Levitsky's (1997) contextualization and precising techniques to alleviate the conceptual stretching of the term "populism". The existing literature indicates that populism can be treated as an ideology, a frame, or a strategy (Mudde 2004;Weyland 2001;Hawkins 2009), yet each requires further elaboration to understand the specific variant of populism and its democratic consequences. In our comparative analysis, we show that Erdogan, Modi, and Putin can be seen as populists par excellence because their discourses display central tenets of populism (e.g., people centrism or the treatment of issues as a cosmic war between the "good people" and the "evil elites"). ...
... A significant number of studies in populism literature seek to clarify the definition of "populism" and determine the best method to capture it. Despite their differences, these studies can be generally categorized into three groups that view populism as (i) a "thin" political ideology that reduces politics to a conflict between the "corrupt elite" and the "righteous people" and seeks to make the volonté générale (general will) of the people the dominant force in politics (Mudde 2004;Mudde and Kaltwasser 2012); (ii) a political strategy to leverage and mobilize support by appealing to grievances and emotions of large segments of the population (Weyland 2001;Roberts 2006;Jansen 2011;Bonikowski and Gidron 2016) or (iii) a form of political communication style, which frames social issues in a way that allows politicians or parties to present the world as an existential conflict between the people and the elites (Canovan 1999;Kazin 1998;Laclau 2005;Hawkins 2009;Taggart 2000;Jargers and Walgrave 2007;Moffitt 2018;Moffitt and Tormey 2014;Aslanidis 2016;Tepe 2021). Although the existing literature is very rich and vibrant, it still has several critical blind spots. ...
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Despite its global rise, theoretical frameworks to capture populism have been derived primarily from case studies in the Western hemisphere. To assess if and how the premises of populism travel across different contexts, we offer a comparative analysis of populist discourses in Turkey, India, and Russia, countries with different political contexts and religions. The content analysis of 1682 speeches of Erdoğan, Modi, and Putin shows that they depart from their European and American counterparts because they are neither nativist nor inclusive. Instead, they introduce a new notion of “people” anchored in a religiously defined community, interpret the nation’s past to achieve their own political goals, and identify different driving forces to restore their lost global role. A comparison of Erdoğan, Modi, and Putin highlights the blind spots of existing studies, which fail to carefully contextualize the term, thus obscuring the country-specific constituents of populist discourses and the role of religions. Understanding the regional variants of populism not only helps us capture the reasons behind the leaders’ appeal and resiliency but also their so-called unexpected actions and decisions, such as Putin’s territorial and religious claims over Ukraine.
... Y sabemos que cuando un líder extrae su poder reclamando hablar en nombre del pueblo, sin restricciones institucionales, la puerta al autoritarismo se abre de par en par y los derechos de las minorías, quienes a menudo pueden no estar de acuerdo y advertir las consecuencias de su empoderamiento, son los primeros en verse minusvalorizados. La evidencia histórica suele estar allí siempre disponible para el que quiere verla (Mounk, 2018;Weyland, 2001Weyland, , 2013. ...
... Para una discusión mucho más exhaustiva del populismo como estrategia política, véaseWeyland, 2001. ...
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Analiza un tema de relevancia en la actualidad sobre la ley de revocación de mandato. Parte de la pregunta si la nueva legislación federal en materia de revocación de mandato se trata, realmente, de una norma regulatoria de la ratificación de mandato. Para ello, analiza la conceptualización dogmática, se desagregan los elementos esenciales de cada figura y se revisa la legislación federal y local en materia de revocación, buscando encontrar pistas para determinar el espíritu del nuevo ordenamiento. Los autores concluyen que, la ley en materia en materia de revocación de mandato no se ajusta completamente a ninguno de los supuestos de revocación ni de ratificación, pues no satisface sus elementos esenciales y, hasta obtener el resultado de la eventual consulta, no se podría saber si se encuadra en el supuesto de pérdida o voto de confianza.
... Infine, il populismo può essere inteso come strategia politica implementata da leader carismatici a capo di organizzazioni populiste tesa alla ricerca del potere (Weyland, 2001;Kriesi e Pappas, 2015;Weyland, 2017). Questa strategia è basata su un rapporto comunicativo diretto, non mediato e non istituzionalizzato tra il leader e i suoi seguaci disorganizzati, e deriva in particolare dallo studio dei populismi dell'America Latina. ...
... Particolare attenzione al ruolo delle politiche pubbliche è stata data dall'approccio del populismo economico (Dornbusch e Edwards, 1990;Weyland, 2003;, ormai minoritario, in riferimento all'America Latina prima del 1989. Questo approccio individua, tra gli altri, un carattere essenziale del populismo (di sinistra) nell'implementazione di politiche pubbliche tese all'aumento della spesa pubblica attraverso: il deficit di bilancio, il controllo dei prezzi e l'aumento dei salari nominali, 8 Il concetto di emozioni specifiche deriva dalla psicologia politica e studia le diverse cause ed effetti sulla politica di alcune emozioni specifiche come speranza, entusiasmo, disgusto, rabbia, ansia, paura, disprezzo e tristezza (Lerner e Keltner, 2000, 2001Redlawsk, Roseman, Mattes e Katz, 2018;Smith e Ellsworth, 1985). ...
Article
Keywords: political polarization, populism, political communication, democracy, emotions. Political polarization and populism represent two extremely prolific fields of research. These concepts have a lot in common, yet these research areas remain essentially on two parallel tracks. This essay aims to link the studies on political polarization and those on populism, underlining how the literature on the two concepts could be integrated. Through a conceptual review, in this essay, I argue that populism can be considered a sub-category of polarization. Populism always contributes to polarization, above all through its communication based on the division «We pure people vs Them corrupted elite», communication which to a great extent can embody its ideology and strategy as well. Furthermore, through an analysis of the main approaches to political polarization, I argue that political communication can be considered one of the main triggers of polarization
... Presidents, after all, exert a substantial influence on their very own approval by "priming the criteria on which citizens base their approval evaluations" (Druckman and Holmes 2004, 755). Further, the findings provide evidence on how presidents use their bully pulpit to activate latent issues of public importance, such as Filipinos' yearning for order and security, among others, that comports chiefly to the strategic and stylistic means of how populists discursively work (Weyland 2001;Moffitt and Tormey 2014;Hawkins 2009). ...
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This paper examines speechmaking on a contentious policy by arguably one of the most controversial figures to have assumed the Philippine presidency. Drawing on quantitative textual approaches on a corpus of 845 presidential speeches delivered between June 2016 and July 2020, we provide evidence that Rodrigo Duterte's evocative utterances against drug lords and criminals are not just deliberate illocutionary acts intended to court public support, but also priming tactics aimed towards a politically and economically significant audience whose acquiescence gives symbolic legitimacy to a controversial anti-crime policy. Using quantitative textual approaches and econometric analysis, we find that violent-crime rhetoric is more likely to accompany public pronouncements made before a political audience consisting of law enforcement authorities and government officials, as well as an economic audience made up of business chambers, overseas Filipino workers, and labor groups. Overall, the findings nuance an image of Duterte beyond that of a penal populist.
... Más aún, si el populismo es puramente perjudicial o bien simplemente un medio correctivo para las democracias en crisis, sigue siendo un tema muy controvertido (cf. Dahl, 1991;Di Tella, 1965;Hawkins & Kaltwasser, 2017;Laclau, 2005;Mouffe, 2018;Mudde, 2007;Mudde & Kaltwasser, 2012;Müller, 2016;Urbinati, 2014;Weyland, 2001). Esta controversia surge en gran medida a raíz de la falta de consenso en torno a Intelligence Unit Limited, 2021), 4, http://www.eiu.com/Handlers/WhitepaperHandler.ashx?fi=Democracy-Index-2020.pdf&mode=wp&campaignid=democracy2020. ...
... Here, I side with Paris Asladinis (2016), who challenges the definition of populism as an ideology, even a "thin" one, instead inviting readers to see it as a discursive frame that is based on opposing the people to the elite and relies on immediacy and direct communication that involves deliberate violations of rules of polite speech and behaviour (Wodak, Culpeper, and Semino 2021). Weyland (2001) and Betz (2002) have already defined populism as a political strategy, but Asladinis brings into the debate Laclau (2005, 33), who states that "a movement is not populist because in its politics or ideology it presents actual contents identifiable as populistic, but because it shows a particular logic of articulation of those contents-whatever those contents are." Asladinis argues convincingly that looking at populism as a discursive frame provides a solid methodological framework for empirical research. ...
... Broadly, in the populism scholarship there are three competing theoretical conceptualizations: Populism as an as an ideology(Mudde, 2007;Pankowski, 2010), as a mode of political strategy(Weyland, 2001), and as a discourse(Laclau, 2007). ...
Thesis
This thesis examines and exposes how the heightened socio-cultural salience of immigration in contemporary Sweden affects the traditional party of power, the Social Democrats (SAP), and its understanding and response to the nationalist ‘populist’ party the Sweden Democrats (SD). Through extended ethnographic, survey and archival research in the year leading up to the September 2018 general election, I dissect how these dynamics manifested in Norrköping, a traditional SAP stronghold with a long history of immigration where support for SD has grown considerably. Based on my findings, I argue that the untranslatable Swedish concept of ‘trygghet’ functions as a powerful heuristic device for understanding the 2018 election campaign. Denoting an enveloping sense of safety and comfort, trygghet, and its antipode otrygghet, were increasingly mobilised by both the SAP and SD in the wake of the 2015 European refugee crisis. Among SD supporters and party members I illustrate the resentful power of a mythological nostalgia for a trygghet that is intimately tied to an imagined social democratic Sweden of yesteryear. Within the SAP, however, the aggravated socio-cultural politics of immigration exposed a different register of evocative nostalgias for what the fundamental precepts of social democracy are. Due to the heightened salience of immigration, these competing visions of trygghet came to a forceful head during the election campaign and ultimately proved contentious for the SAP. This thesis contributes original findings to the burgeoning literature on how immigration is reshaping traditional socio-political conflict dimensions. Adopting both ethnographic and geographic sensitivities, it adds to the growing scholarship which takes seriously the everyday contexts in which people make sense and meaning out of socio-politics. By doing so, it exposes the glaringly normative limitations common to both dominant academic and social democratic explanations for the rise of nationalist ‘populism’.
... A terceira abordagem (c.f. WEYLAND, 2001;MADRID, 2008) A quarta e última abordagem (FREEDEN, 1996;STANLEY, 2008;DE LA TORRE, 2010), discursiva/ideológica, baseia-se na distinção maniqueísta entre o povo puro e a elite corrupta, uma visão de mundo que é usada para criticar o establishment e construir uma visão romantizada do povo, monista e antipluralista. ...
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O populismo é uma sombra para a democracia e sua história não é recente. Tido como uma ideologia que procura criar uma oposição entre o povo puro e uma elite corrupta, o conceito de populismo pode ser aplicado a diferentes ideologias e perpassa diferentes regiões e momentos da história. O objetivo desse paper é verificar se podemos afirmar que as campanhas de 2016 e 2017 às Presidências norte-americana e francesa de Donald Trump e Marine Le Pen podem ser consideradas como populista. Metodologicamente, serão analisados os discursos das campanhas através da análise quantitativa de conteúdo aplicada no software QDA Miner/WordStat. A análise revela que grande parte dos atributos da direita populista são verificadas em ambas as campanhas. Palavras-chave: Populismo; Discurso Político; Donald Trump; Marine Le Pen; Análise de Conteúdo.
... Popülizmi strateji olarak gören bakış açısına göre ise ideoloji ve politik değerler, popülist lider ve onun etkilediği halk için önemli bir yer ifade etmez (Weyland, 2001). Önemli olan liderin takipçileriyle kurduğu ilişkinin biçimidir. ...
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https://dergipark.org.tr/en/pub/tsbder/issue/69116 “Latin Amerika Bölgesinde Siyaset ve Toplum” ana temalı 2022/1 sayısı için karşılaştırmalı siyaset bilimi, kamu yönetimi, uluslararası ilişkiler, politik iktisat ve politik sosyoloji alanlarında Latin Amerika ülkelerinin siyasal ve sosyal kurumlarına, jeopolitik ve güvenlik sorunlarına, iç ve dış politikada temel çatışma alanlarına, bölgesel entegrasyon faaliyetlerine ve bölge ülkelerinin Türkiye ile ilişkilerine odaklanan bilimsel literatüre katkı sağlayacak çalışmaları içermektedir. Politics and Society in Latin America: Scientific studies that will contribute to the literature in the fields of comparative political science and public administration, international relations, political economy, and political sociology for the 2022/1 issue of our journal under the main theme ‘Politics and Society in Latin America’ that focuses on sub-topics such as political and social institutions, geopolitical and security problems, main conflict areas in domestic and foreign policy, regional integration activities and relations between Turkey and Latin America countries.
... The emergence and development of populist movements has prompted widespread debate in scholarly circles concerning how the term "populism" ought to be conceptualized (Canovan, 1999;Taggart, 2000;Mudde, 2004;Laclau, 2005;Albertazzi & McDonnell, 2015;Mudde & Kaltwasser, 2019). Although some have defined it as a political strategy (Weyland, 2001) or a simple and direct communication style (Canovan, 1999), the consensus now seems to have settled on its definition as a thin-centered ideology (Mudde, 2007). Populism may be framed as a thin ideology in which society is divided into two different and opposing camps: the 'pure people' and the 'corrupt elite,' and where politics must be the expression of the general will of the people (Mudde & Kaltwasser, 2019). ...
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While the scholarly consensus is that VOX is a far-right political party in European terms, questions remain regarding whether or not its politics contain elements of populism. This research paper explores the Twitter and Instagram strategy deployed by Santiago Abascal, leader of VOX, during the 10 November 2019 general election campaign to assess whether his messaging includes characteristic features of populist rhetoric, to analyze the uses to which he puts social media, and to understand the features of the leadership he projects via social networks. The research methodology is content analysis applied to the 136 and 26 posts on Abascal’s Twitter and Instagram accounts, respectively, during the election campaign. The findings suggest that Abascal’s discourse is marked by a conservative and nativist form of Spanish nationalism; however, it is also shaped by an anti-establishment rhetoric and antagonistic message that pits la España Viva [‘Living Spain’] against la dictadura progre [‘the progressive dictatorship’], reflecting the inclusion of some features of populism. A further conclusion is that these social media platforms are the preferred propaganda tools used to communicate the candidate’s agenda, although each network evinces certain distinctive characteristics: Twitter channels a polarizing message via aggressive and critical rhetoric, whereas Instagram posts are designed to show the human side of the candidate’s profile. Thus, it would seem that the aim is to articulate a populist-inflected form of charismatic leadership.
... The discursive approach to understanding and practicing populism emphasises the language, narratives, rhetoric, and symbols used to instil the 'mental map' that powerful, corrupt elites and 'others' are acting against pure, meritorious, ordinary, common people -with the latter being an assemblage not bounded narrowly by demographic markers such as social class (Mudde and Rovira Kaltwasser 2014;Kazin 1995). Populist leaders and operatives function as political entrepreneurs who often use direct, institutionally unmediated, personalised communication to gain support from a coalition of heterogeneous social groups that blame elites for various socio-economic problems (Weyland 2001 politics stands in opposition to the possibility of truth-telling as a collective effort to produce agreed-upon facts and reach consensus on the correspondence between assertions and reality. Considering the opportunistic and heterogeneous nature of how issues and appeals are packaged to appeal the 'the people' via populist discursive and political strategies, populist political parties and movements are frequently seen to rely heavily on the personality of leaders 'who claim a unique capability for resolving objectives previously believed to be unattainable, incompatible or excluded' (Schmitter 2019: 77). ...
Chapter
This chapter introduces the purpose and rationale behind the need for a collected edition on the implications for educational policy and administration of a global resurgence of populism since the turn of the New Millennium. It discusses the contemporary populist dynamics, canvasses the existing knowledge base on populism in the social sciences, humanities and education literature, and situates the collection relative to those dynamics and knowledge base.
... As populist leaders and parties exploit these divisions based on religion, ethnicity, nationality, and other socio-political constructs, societies are becoming are fractured (Moffitt, 2016;Mudde, 2010;Albertazzi & McDonnell, 2008;Laclau, 2005). In the past, the concept was understood as something unique to Latin American politics, where left-wing populism predominated from the 1930s to the 1980s (Hawkins, 2010;Weyland, 2001). Even when there were populist leaders in other regions, they were rarely called or recognized as populists. ...
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Although populism has become a focus of research in the last decade, there hasn’t been much academic work on how militaries around the world have reacted/acted to the rise of populist leaders. There is some timeworn research on the relationship of militaries in Latin America with various left-wing populist governments and leaders from the 1930s to 1970s. Given that populism was largely understood in the context of left-wing politics, with the rise of right-wing populism, the literature on the military and populism needs to be advanced by studying the relationship between right-wing populism and the military. This article aims to address this gap by looking at the right-wing populism case study of Pakistan, where the military has actively participated in the rise of a religious populist leader. To situate the case study within the larger literature of the military and populism, the dynamics and history of military associations with populism and populist leaders are revisited in the article’s first part.
... Even with these disputes, consensus around a minimal definition of populism has in recent times facilitated insightful comparative research on the topic. Studies on European and American populism demonstrate how populist manifestations operate at the level of discourse (De Cleen and Stavrakakis, 2017;Kioupkiolis and Seoane Pérez, 2018), at the level of strategy (Weyland, 2001), and at the level of attitudes and values (Marcos-Marne, 2020; Kefford et al., 2021). This cumulative and comparative spirit is worth preserving, especially when compared to the "dark times" of populism, when the concept was no more than an epiphenomenon of other economic and social processes (see De Cleen and Glynos, 2021: 3). ...
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Multiple voices warn about an analytical deadlock in the field of populism studies mainly due to an excess of description and a lack of contextualisation. Reflecting on the current responses to this impasse, this study presents a framework for contextualising populism and seeks to enrich and expand the potential of populism research. The main argument of this paper is that a more dynamic and interactive analytical framework is necessary to show the contingent and fragile nature of populist discourses and complement existing research. To illustrate this approach, the case of Podemos is analysed to show how the populist discourse varies over time for the same populist actor and to what extent this variation responds to contextual pressures. The study concludes that the contingent nature of populism can be related to two main conditions: the variable power over discourse of populist mobilisation and the normative pressures within the political sphere.
... When it comes to the methodology in examining populism, although Weyland (2001) was convinced to make binary categorizations in his previous conceptualization, his recent study remarks that the fuzzy-set approach circulated by Ragin (2000) is more helpful in capturing the gradations and chameleonic nature of populism in reality (Weyland, 2017). He argues that by virtue of this approach, considering how they score in their ideological commitments, party organizations, personalistic tendencies, and populist aspirations may give more reliable results in the analysis and comparison of populism, especially in the European cases. ...
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In recent decades, a serious number of studies have been dedicated to defining and conceptualizing populism in order to enable proper and comparative analyses of the phenomenon. They usually studied populism by reducing it to an ideology, discourse, or strategy and provided analytical approaches accordingly although some other approaches (style of communication, political project, etc.) are possible to come across in the relevant literature. Critically engaging with the most influential ones, this article ascertains two principal deficiencies in these bodies of work. Firstly, the minimal and generic definitions presented in these studies empty the concept to a broad extent. Secondly, most scholars assume the concentrated dimension of populism as the whole of the phenomenon and undertake its conceptualization with this assumption to a large extent. As a result of a comprehensive discussion on these main and also some secondary deficiencies, this article offers two ways to treat them. Scholars who examine populism and make comparisons between different cases can either carry out their analyses by taking the multi-layered nature of the phenomenon into account or by clearly stating the dimension of populism which they study and, in this way, limit their work to this dimension without further claims. In addition to all these, showing the inadequacy of the Sartorian approaches that dominate the literature, the article discusses that Wittgensteinian approaches can provide appropriate alternative frameworks for the conceptualization of populism.
... Theorizing PRR foreign policy is an ambitious task considering the heterogeneity of the literature. Populism is either considered a strategy for seizing power (Weyland 2001), a discursive logic (Laclau and Mouffe 1985), a movement, or a style (Mudde and Kaltwasser 2012a, 3ff.). However, we embark from the widely accepted ideational definition of populism by Mudde (2004, 544) as "thin-centered ideology." ...
Article
The success of anti-establishment parties across Europe has fueled debate on the role of populism for foreign policy and its contemporary contestation. The almost-election of Marine Le Pen to the French presidency in 2017, the successes of the Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) in Germany's 2017 and 2021 federal elections, and the central role these populist radical-right (PRR) parties henceforth play in structuring political debate make their wider foreign policy positions an issue of central concern. Yet, we still lack a thorough understanding how populism and radical-right ideology jointly produce a distinct foreign policy positioning beyond European integration. This article tries to narrow this gap by conceptualizing PRR positioning on trade, climate change, development policies, hegemony, and security and defense issues. The comparative analysis of official documents and voting behavior reveals only subtle differences between the Rassemblement national and the AfD, while demonstrating broad commonalities that have the potential to inform research across other cases and world regions on PRR parties’ foreign policy positioning.
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At a time when American “populism” has become a more commonly referenced concern, buzzword, and subject of academic research, conceptual clarity is imperative. This study aims to make some progress by exploring the dimensions and covariates of populism within the mass public. We differentiate economic populists, cultural populists, and ideologically constrained populists, who differ substantially from each other with respect age, gender, education, income, some personality traits, and moral foundations. We also distinguish each of these populist veins from other orientations that are often mis-labeled as populism, such as nativism, nationalism, and authoritarianism—noting points of convergence and divergence. Moreover, with respect to political orientations, we observe that economic populists are usually ideologically “liberal” and Democratic, while cultural populists are usually “conservative” and Republican. Finally, we find that cultural populists exhibit disproportionate levels of political obstinacy, whereas ideologically constrained populists exhibit disproportionate levels of socio-political contempt.
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The rise of nationalist populism, its challenge to representative democracy and the populist impact on the liberal international order have emerged as one of the most significant phenomena in international politics in recent years. This special issue brings together a group of researchers from a wide range of theoretical, disciplinary and epistemological backgrounds, including political science, populism studies, foreign policy analysis and critical security studies, to examine the international dimension of populism and the practical impact of populism on foreign policy and international security. Empirically and conceptually, it presents audiences in political science, international relations and related disciplines with a timely review of the scope of research on populism in international relations. Our specific aim is to explore and evaluate what challenges a populist mobilisation of anti-elitism and anti-globalism presents to both the contemporary study of international politics, and the structure of the international system and key actors within it.
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Using institutional economic theory as our guiding framework, we develop a model to describe how populist discourse by a nation's political leader influences entrepreneurship. We hypothesize that populist discourse reduces entrepreneurship by creating regime uncertainty concerning the future stability of the institutional environment, resulting in entrepreneurs anticipating higher future transaction costs. Our model highlights two important factors that moderate the relationship. First, is the strength of political checks and balances, which we hypothesize weakens the negative relationship between populist discourse and entrepreneurship by providing entrepreneurs with greater confidence that the actions of a populist will be constrained. Second, the political ideology of the leader moderates the relationship between populist discourse and entrepreneurship. The anti-capitalistic rhetoric of left-wing populism will create greater regime uncertainty than right-wing populism, which is often accompanied by rhetoric critical of free trade and foreigners but also supportive of business interests. The effect of centrist populism, which is accompanied by a mix of contradictory and often moderate ideas that make it difficult to discern future transaction costs, will have a weaker negative effect on entrepreneurship than either left-wing or right-wing populism. We empirically test our model using a multi-level design and a dataset comprised of more than 780,000 individuals in 33 countries over the period 2002-2016. Our analysis largely supports our theory regarding the moderating role of ideology. Still, surprisingly, our findings suggest that the negative effect of populism on entrepreneurship is greater in nations with stronger checks and balances.
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The article examines how mainstream news organizations in Brazil have tweeted about Jair Bolsonaro, investigating to what extent they may (voluntarily or not) amplify the visibility of populist leaders. We also scrutinize the levels of audience engagement with posts mentioning the President. Our empirical design comprises a content analysis of 128,096 tweets published throughout 2019 by Folha de S. Paulo, O Estado de S. Paulo, and O Globo. The results reveal that such newspapers focused on controversies and negative issues involving Bolsonaro, while posts addressing public policies did not achieve high visibility or engagement. The article also discusses to what degree the newspapers may be taking advantage of users' preferences for content with populist features to reinforce their watchdog role and boost audience ratings. Our findings also contribute to understanding how populist leaders and media organizations can build a mutually beneficial relationship, even though they publicly claim to oppose each other. Finally, the paper suggests new hypotheses to be explored, such as the argument that quality papers may be loosening the division between news and opinion when using social media to satisfy audience niches in polarized environments.
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Populism is a powerful social force that has reshaped the political landscapes of many nations since the turn of the 21st century. Much of the success of populist movements is attributed to various social crises and a deep dissatisfaction with political systems. In the present issue, we sought to find papers that investigate what drives the demand for populist politics during crises on a psychological level and, correspondingly, how populist rhetoric influences the way individuals think about, and respond, to crises. In this editorial, we introduce a multidisciplinary issue and summarize the key themes stemming from the articles included. The contributions addressed various forms of crises; from identity issues to global transformations, and various aspects of populism; from the antiestablishment attitudes of the public, to the populist rhetoric of political actors. There was also a key theme centered on the role of emotions. We believe that these topics are of great interest to political psychologists of any mold. We hope that this special issue can play a part in increasing our understanding of how populism thrives during crises and in driving future research on this topic.
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The ‘charismatic leader’ is a recurring topic within the literature on populist radical right parties (PRRPs), arguing that charisma is important for the success of these parties. However, most studies assess charismatic leadership only through the perception of the leaders' followers and make no statement on the leaders' perspectives and their role for party institutionalisation. This article compares the supply and the demand sides of charisma by drawing on interviews with the so‐called charismatic leader of the Swiss People's Party (SVP) – Christoph Blocher – and local, regional and national party representatives. The article shows that assessing both perspectives contributes to a better understanding of charisma and its importance for internal leadership in institutionalised PRRPs. The case of the SVP further demonstrates that successful party institutionalisation and a strong internal organisational structure make the party's durability less dependent on the charismatic leader and could lead to efforts of depersonalisation. Der ‘charismatische Leader’ ist ein wiederkehrendes Thema in der Literatur über rechtspopulistische Parteien (PRRPs), wobei argumentiert wird, dass Charisma für den Erfolg dieser Parteien wichtig ist. In den meisten Studien werden charismatische Führungspersönlichkeiten nur aus der Sicht der Anhänger bewertet; hingegen werden keine Aussagen über die Perspektiven der Führungspersönlichkeiten und ihre Rolle für die Institutionalisierung der Partei formuliert. Dieser Artikel vergleicht die Angebots‐ und die Nachfrageseite von Charisma anhand von Interviews mit dem sogenannten charismatischen Führer der Schweizerischen Volkspartei (SVP) ‐ Christoph Blocher ‐ und lokalen, regionalen und nationalen Parteivertretern. Der Artikel zeigt, dass die Betrachtung beider Perspektiven zu einem besseren Verständnis von Charisma und seiner Bedeutung für die interne Führung in institutionalisierten PRRPs beiträgt. Der Fall der SVP zeigt zudem, dass eine erfolgreiche Institutionalisierung der Partei und eine starke interne Organisationsstruktur die Beständigkeit der Partei weniger von der charismatischen Führungspersönlichkeit abhängig macht und zu Bemühungen um Entpersonalisierung führen können. Le ‘leader charismatique’ est un thème récurrent dans la littérature sur les partis populistes de droite (PRRP), où l'on argumente que le charisme est important pour le succès de ces partis. Cependant, la plupart des études n'évaluent les leaders charismatiques que du point de vue des partisans et ne formulent pas de conclusion sur la perspective des leaders et leur rôle dans l'institutionnalisation du parti. Cet article compare l'offre et de la demande du charisme sur la base d'entretiens avec le soi‐disant leader charismatique de l'Union démocratique du centre (UDC) ‐ Christoph Blocher ‐ et des représentants du parti. L'article démontre que l'examen des deux perspectives contribue à une meilleure compréhension du charisme et de son importance pour le leadership interne dans les PRRP institutionnalisés. Le cas de l'UDC montre en outre qu'une institutionnalisation du parti et une structure organisationnelle solide rendent la pérennité du parti moins dépendante du leader charismatique.
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The article attempts to reveal if it is possible to make a differentiated analysis of the global dimension of populism by systematizing foreign (mainly) and domestic studies. This allowed us to correlate the theoretical and comparative developments of research on populism, on the one hand, and the relevant, traditional problem areas of the international relations theory. This approach helped us to demonstrate both the existing and potential possibilities for a differentiated analysis of the global aspects of populism. The scientific novelty of the article lies in determining the possibilities of the academic field for the analysis of the foreign policy effects of populism. As a result of the study, the author concluded that the foreign policy positions and policies of populists derive from domestic politics and their opposition to traditional elites. Structural pressure (pressure of the international environment) and the adoption of the rules of the game after coming to power, even if the anti-elite discourse is maintained, make attempts to typify and classify populist foreign policy positions extremely complex and often unproductive.
Article
En este artículo se estudian los elementos propios de una estrategia populista de política exterior, tomando el caso de las relaciones entre India e Israel a partir de la llegada al poder de Narendra Modi, en 2014. Se argumenta que una estrategia de política exterior es populista cuando: 1) apela a la voluntad del pueblo; 2) incorpora un discurso en el que se acentúa la confrontación entre el “Otro” y las élites con el pueblo; 3) se centralizan las decisiones, y 4) procura mostrar congruencia de las acciones con la concepción del papel nacional que legitima esas decisiones. Se plantea igualmente que una estrategia populista en política exterior se forja a partir de cálculos muy complejos, en los que se contemplan presiones nacionales e internacionales.
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Resumo: O artigo emprega ferramentas analíticas do policy design e da literatura comparada sobre o populismo contemporâneo para avaliar a resultante dos três primeiros anos do governo Bolsonaro nas relações federativas. A análise das ações e inações do governo federal no combate à pandemia de Covid-19 e na renovação do Fundeb - políticas centrais em duas áreas estruturantes para a federação brasileira no pós-1988 - revelou sinais de desarticulação entre objetivos e instrumentos para desenvolvimento de políticas, caracterizando o predomínio do não desenho (non-design). Também evidenciou o uso da retórica dicotômica e de confronto típica dos populistas, dirigida a governantes subnacionais, STF e outros segmentos da elite política. Juntas, as duas constatações indicam a orientação populista de Bolsonaro para as relações federativas no âmbito das políticas sociais.
Chapter
This chapter identifies the most important approaches and authors in the study of populism. Each of them brings to the fore the different characteristics and qualities of populism. From the multitude of approaches, here we single out the four most important approaches: (1) discursive, (2) organizational, (3) cultural (performative), and (4) ideational approaches. The characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages of each of the listed approaches are presented. The analysis of the four approaches indicates that populism can be seen as a meta ideology, that is, as an ideology, which uses the other (classical) political ideologies instrumentally, that is, as an instrument of fulfilling the ideological goals and values of populism. In this sense, at the end of the chapter, a comparison is made between populism and other classical political ideologies such as liberalism, socialism, and conservatism.
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The localization agenda is an important tool to address asymmetric power relations within the global humanitarian system. Localization can increase the efficacy of the humanitarian response and also address the uneven power relationship within the humanitarian space – especially between the international and local humanitarian actors, or, in other words, between the stakeholders of the Global North and the Global South. In doing so, it bridges the gap between the Global North and Global South and follows the ‘spirit’ of the Brandt Report and its suggested set of policies. In this contribution, I will look at how localization in humanitarian actions would help in the context of the Rohingya refugee crisis in Bangladesh.
Article
Right-wing populists have emerged and endured in democracies globally, threatening democracy through their attacks on liberal institutions. Beyond these proximate threats, relatively little is known about how right-wing populists impact public opinion. This article addresses this gap, exploring change in democratic satisfaction among non-populist voters in two recent elections with right-wing populist success: the 2016 Brexit referendum in the U.K. and the 2017 election of the far-right, populist Alternative für Deutschland in Germany. Leveraging high quality panel data, we reveal democratic satisfaction among the mainstream electorate declines after right-wing populists win. Conversely right-wing populist voters appear to be no more or less satisfied in democracy regardless of the election outcome. In addition, we find mainstream variation in democratic satisfaction is not due to an election loss generally, but right-wing populist success specifically. These findings hence demonstrate the threat that right-wing populism poses to democratic support even among its opponents.
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Using institutional economic theory as our guiding framework, we develop a model to describe how populist discourse by a nation’s political leader influences entrepreneurship. We hypothesize that populist discourse reduces entrepreneurship by creating regime uncertainty concerning the future stability of the institutional environment, resulting in entrepreneurs anticipating higher future transaction costs. Our model highlights two important factors that moderate the relationship. First is the strength of political checks and balances, which we hypothesize weakens the negative relationship between populist discourse and entrepreneurship by providing entrepreneurs with greater confidence that the actions of a populist will be constrained. Second, the political ideology of the leader moderates the relationship between populist discourse and entrepreneurship. The anti-capitalistic rhetoric of left-wing populism will create greater regime uncertainty than right-wing populism, which is often accompanied by rhetoric critical of free trade and foreigners, but also supportive of business interests. The effect of centrist populism, which is often accompanied by a mix of contradictory and often moderate ideas that make it difficult to discern future transaction costs, will have a weaker negative effect on entrepreneurship than either left-wing or right-wing populism. We empirically test our model using a multi-level design and a dataset comprised of more than 780,000 individuals in 33 countries over the period 2002–2016. Our analysis largely supports our theory regarding the moderating role of ideology. However, surprisingly, our findings suggest that the negative effect of populism on entrepreneurship is greater in nations with stronger checks and balances.
Article
This article is framed by the debate about the political identity of the organization Podemos. It aims to analyze the partially supported argument by existing literature regarding the supposed populist identity of Podemos. In this way we seek to review the literature on Podemos as part of the discussion on the populist phenomenon and reflect whether its characterization as left-wing populism corresponds with its political documents particularly its vision on representation and democracy, as well as its organizational structure as a political force.
Article
Quantitative methodology is of great avail to understand populism as a complex, multifaceted concept. This essay develops a template, showing how a quantitative lens readily parses the morphology of populism into different shapes and shades. The ability to model multiple shapes of populism helps operationalize the high degree of conceptual complexity evident in the scholarly debate. Quantification achieves this by dissecting populism into a set of variables that are theoretically distinct yet may be empirically related. Comparative research takes off from there, fueled by widely applicable measures, to map how populism takes different shapes across space and time. In this course, quantitative measurement and aggregation also expose observable shades of populism. This capacity naturally expresses populism as a gradual phenomenon, and draws up important conceptual choices regarding the weight and hierarchy of empirical indicators. Altogether, a quantitative morphology of shapes and shades systematically translates theoretical innovation into creative empirical analysis.
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The Future of Trans-Atlantic Relations from the Perspective of NGOs and Think Tanks in Central Europe and Hungary
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O seguinte artigo aborda o fenómeno do populismo mediante os significados atribuídos ao conceito pela imprensa portuguesa. A partir de um estudo qualitativo dos enquadramentos atribuídos à candidatura de André Ventura, líder do partido político Chega, durante o período eleitoral das Presidenciais Portuguesas de 2021, pretendemos identificar os significados atribuídos ao populismo, as diferenças de enquadramento do fenómeno na imprensa de referência e na imprensa tablóide, e a relação do populismo com o campo dos media. Na imprensa portuguesa analisada, foram encontrados, essencialmente, os frames: polarização, retórica anti-sistema, nacionalismo, nativismo e messianismo. O nosso estudo também identificou variações de enquadramento por parte dos jornais analisados, Público e Correio da Manhã, concluindo que a imprensa tablóide analisada é mais permeável aos valores do conflito, da novelização e da dramatização, valores normalmente explorados pela comunicação populista.
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Populist leaders base their electoral appeal on underlying their agenda with claims to authenticity reflected both in the content and in the style of their political communication. Based on a conceptualisation of authenticity as discursive performance, we conduct a comparative analysis of the authenticity claims of two right-wing populist leaders, Boris Johnson and Donald Trump. We focus on authenticity claims associated with international politics. International issues are central to populist exclusionary narratives, but also difficult for populist incumbents to narrate authentically. We find that despite differences in their public personas, Johnson and Trump show considerable similarities in both content and style of their authenticity performances. In particular, they ‘domesticate’ international politics to reinforce domestic issues assumed closer to ‘ordinary’ voters, all the while employing rhetorical styles suggestive of their authenticity. These findings highlight the centrality of authenticity performances to populist politics and electoral appeal.
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De acuerdo con la literatura, el populismo, entendido como un discurso binario que contrapone el pueblo a la elite, está presente en las sociedades en forma de actitudes políticas latentes. La estructura discursiva consta de dos polos. Uno negativo, la dimensión anti-oligárquica, y otro positivo, la idealización del pueblo. La ausencia de una de estas propiedades nos situaría fuera del discurso populista. La mayoría de los estudios disponibles, realizados mediante encuesta, muestran que el populismo está extendido en muchas sociedades, lo que significa que ambas condiciones discursivas se cumplen. El objetivo de esta investigación es probar si realmente esto es así. De forma específica, indagar si la gente tiene un discurso laudatorio hacia el pueblo, condición sacro-santa del populismo. Para ello se analiza el caso francés mediante una estrategia cualitativa basada en 9 grupos de discusión. Los resultados revelan que, lejos de existir una cierta fe en el pueblo, las personas recelan de las capacidades morales y epistémicas de los ciudadanos. Paradójicamente, se desea una mayor participación política, fundamentalmente vía referéndum, instrumento privilegiado de las ofertas populistas. Con ello están exigiendo cauces para que sus demandas sean atendidas, para que se cumpla, en definitiva, el ideal democrático de igualdad política. Los hallazgos de este estudio invitan a revisar de manera crítica presupuestos y conocimientos previos bien asentados respecto a cómo estudiar la demanda populista..
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When scholars extend their models and hypotheses to encompass additional cases, they commonly need to adapt their analytic categories to fit the new contexts. Giovanni Sartori's work on conceptual "traveling" and conceptual "stretching" provides helpful guidance in addressing this fundamental task of comparative analysis. Yet Sartori's framework draws upon what may be called classical categorization, which views the relation among categories in terms of a taxonomic hierarchy, with each category having clear boundaries and defining properties shared by all members. We examine the challenge to this framework presented by two types of nonclassical categories: family resemblances and radial categories. With such categories, the overly strict application of a classical framework can lead to abandoning to category prematurely or to modifying it inappropriately. We discuss solutions to these problems, using examples of how scholars have adapted their categories in comparative research on democracy and authoritarianism.
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The recent trend toward democratization in countries across the globe has challenged scholars to pursue two potentially contradictory goals. On the one hand, they seek to increase analytic differentiation in order to capture the diverse forms of democracy that have emerged. On the other hand, they are concerned with conceptual validity. Specifically, they seek to avoid the problem of conceptual stretching that arises when the concept of democracy is applied to cases for which, by relevant scholarly standards, it is not appropriate. This article argues that the pursuit of these two goals has led to a proliferation of conceptual innovations, including numerous subtypes of democracy – that is to say, democracy "with adjectives." The articles explores the strengths and weaknesses of alternative strategies of conceptual innovation that have emerged: descending and climbing Sartori's ladder of generality, generating "diminished" subtypes of democracy, "precising" the definition of democracy by adding defining attributes, and shifting the overarching concept with which democracy is associated. The goal of the analysis is to make more comprehensible the complex structure of these strategies, as well as to explore trade-offs among the strategies. Even when scholars proceed intuitively, rather than self-consciously, they tend to operate within this structure. Yet it is far more desirable for them to do so self-consciously, with a full awareness of these trade-offs.
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En este trabajo se hace una revisión crítica de las definiciones del "populismo" en América Latina señalando las dificultades en el uso de este concepto por la diversidad y amplitud de significados que ha adquirido. Se plantea que el uso del término "neopopulismo" para caracterizar a algunos fenómenos políticos contemporáneos sólo ha agravado las imprecisiones, y se proponen algunas reflexiones que permitirán un uso más productivo de los conceptos que plantean una visión global y comparada de la historia latinoamericana de este siglo. /// A critical review of the definitions of "populism" in Latin America, pointing out the difficulties of using this concept as a result of the wide range of meanings it has acquired. The author suggests that the use of the term "neopopulism" to characterize certain contemporary political phenomena has only served to increase the lack of precision and provides some reflections that will permit a more productive use of concepts that propose a global, comparative view of 20th century Latin American history.
Article
‘In all matters of importance, style and not content is the important thing’: Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest. Populism is a concept which, despite repeated critiques, refuses to disappear from Latin American studies. This article reviews some of the literature, suggesting that populism is best defined in terms of a particular political style , characteristically involving a proclaimed rapport with ‘the people’, a ‘them-and-us’ mentality, and (often, though not necessarily) a period of crisis and mobilisation; none of which makes it exceptional, abnormal, ‘unmediated’ or irrational. Mexican – among other – examples are invoked. The article questions some received opinions: that populism is typically urban, relates to particular historical stages of development, or distinctively derives from either multi-class alliances or elite manipulation. It also queries the fashionable notion of ‘economic populism’. Finally, the article notes the recent phenomenon of ‘neo-populism’, embodied by Salinas, Menem, Fujimori, etc., which a suitably loose (‘stylistic’) definition can usefully accommodate, thus suggesting the continued, if limited, utility of the concept.
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For the people of Argentina the 1980s were a frightening and disorganized period of social adjustment rooted in the unravelling of the 1985 Austral Plan, the state-led economic reorganization that culiminated in the hyperinflation of 1989-1990. This experience created fertile ground for the emergence of a government wedded to neoliberal economic principles. The particular alignment of political and institutioanl factors arising from the experiences of the late 1980s produced broad macroeconomic politices that I will call 'moderate populism'. Although in the short term there was tension between this program and concurrent purportedly growth-oriented reforms, the period was enormously important for coalitional politics and for the cementing of the government's reform policies. Key to undertstanding this situation is the fact that the transtional costs normally borne by the popular classes were alleviated by Argentina's exchange policies. Thus, the government found itself implementing both populist policies (involving distributive benefits without costs) and antipopulist ones (involving the spreading of costs among sectors with conflicting interests). This article will examine the potliical dynamics of this novel program.
Article
Aunque en mayor o menor medida limitadas y condicionadas, las democracias latinoamericanas han logrado sobrevivir a sucesivas o simultáneas crisis económicas, sociales, políticas y financieras durante los últimos años. Su suerte no parece ser ajena a lo que ya, a fines de los años 80, Zermeño denominó «el regreso del líder», postulando una directa correlación entre la fragmentación y la generalizada inseguridad colectiva, y la confianza depositada en figuras carismáticas a las que se considera capaces de poner un remedio a la «situación de emergencia». En este contexto no resulta extraño que haya renacido el interés por el tema del populismo, cuya vigencia como tradición predominante en la cultura política latinoamericana ha sido señalada recientemente en forma reiterada. La mayor parte de los observadores reconoce, sin embargo, que los fenómenos políticos en que se inscriben los nuevos liderazgos latinoamericanos no son fácilmente identificables con el populismo de los años 40: Zermeño se refiere a ellos como «neopopulismos», en tanto está ausente un sujeto popular global y uniforme, un «pueblo» en el sentido lato del término; Ducatenzeiller y Oxhorn destacan las continuidades en el terreno político (principalmente la tendencia autoritaria, antipluralista, y el escaso respeto por las reglas institucionales), pero advierten significativas variaciones en cuanto a las políticas económicas y las alianzas sociales; también Gibson se refiere a estos cambios en los constituencies y políticas públicas, en términos de una «conservatización» de las fuerzas populistas de la región. Pero, entonces, cabría preguntarse si, habida cuenta de todas estas diferencias, aún puede hablarse de populismo; si los cambios registrados en el PRI
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Latin American populism is generally associated with the developmental stage of import substitution industrialization; it is thus widely presumed to have been eclipsed by the debt crisis of the 1980s and the free market reforms of the neoliberal era. However, the leadership of Alberto Fujimori in Peru suggests that new forms of populism may be emerging despite the fiscal constraints of neoliberal austerity. This new variant of populism thrives in a context where economic crisis and social dislocation undermine traditional representative institutions, enabling personalist leaders to establish unmediated relationships with heterogeneous, atomized masses. Political support can be cultivated through populist attacks on entrenched political elites or institutions, along with targeted but highly visible poverty alleviation programs. This new form of populist autocracy complements the efforts of neoliberal technocrats to circumvent the representative institutions that are integral to democratic accountability. The Peruvian case thus demonstrates that populism has been transformed rather than eclipsed during the neoliberal era and that it should be decoupled theoretically from any particular phase or model of economic development.
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Journal of Democracy 6.4 (1995) 125-139 The democratic wave that has swept Latin America since the mid-1970s poses some important questions: How have thinkers in the region adapted the principles of democracy to the specific problems and needs of their underdeveloped continent? What models of democracy have Latin American theorists developed? What social and political forces have embraced these different models and tried to institute them? And finally, what models have prevailed in the major countries that have recently undergone a transition to democracy? How these questions are answered will determine both the quality and the long-term prospects of Latin America's new democracies. Drawing on the work of Philippe Schmitter and Terry Karl, this essay analyzes the special challenges that democracies in the region are currently facing, and then elaborates a classification of models of democracy, each of which copes with these challenges in a distinct way. The opportunities and constraints captured in this classification not only inform debates among democratic theorists, but also condition the institutions and practices that actually prevail in different countries. These important topics have not yet received the scholarly attention they deserve. While political science has analyzed in great depth the variants of democracy prevailing in the First World, most studies of the recent democratic transitions in Latin America have applied a minimalist notion of democracy. Such a definition, which focuses only on the basic distinction between authoritarian and democratic rule, was appropriate for analyses of regime change. But now, after the basic rules of democracy have been established, the question of the kind and quality of democracy becomes important. Analysts need to look beyond the minimal distinction between authoritarian and democratic rule to ask which types of democracy are being considered and instituted in Latin America. Have intellectuals and political actors in the region designed their own variants of democracy by adapting notions developed in the First World to meet the needs of underdeveloped countries? Two special challenges facing democracy in Latin America could prompt such modifications. The first is posed by the region's deep social inequalities and widespread poverty, while the second comes from the inordinate influence wielded by entrenched "powers-that-be," especially private business interests and the military. In Latin America, the level of income inequality and the extent of exclusion from the mainstream of development ("marginality") have been significantly higher than in the First World in comparable time periods. As a result, demands for social reform tend to arise immediately with the installation of democracy, especially because the prosperity of the First World has raised expectations among the less well-off (the "popular sectors"). Poverty and inequality thus pose more urgent problems for democratic stability. The immediate extension of social protection may also be necessary for ensuring full citizenship. Without social guarantees, many of the poor are virtually forced into clientelist submission to elites, who provide minimal benefits in return for obedience. The quality of democracy and indeed its very survival in the long run may require that poverty be reduced and popular hopes for social improvements be satisfied. What political mechanisms can bring about such equity-enhancing change? The most important agents -- parties, interest associations, social movements, and political leaders -- all face a crucial trade-off: The broader the popular support for any given reform effort, the lower its organizational strength tends to be. While large numbers of poor people exist in the informal sector, many of them -- both in urban and rural areas -- are difficult to organize. Compared to these marginals, formal- sector workers have higher organizational capacity, but are often much fewer in number and "relatively privileged." Theorists of reform must therefore choose among three different segments of the less well-to-do strata when seeking support for equity-enhancing efforts: formal-sector workers, who join trade unions; activists among the poor in the informal sector, who participate in social movements; and the great mass of the poor, who remain unorganized. Given the trade-off between the breadth and the organizational strength of support for social change, friends of democracy in Latin America differ among themselves on the best strategy for reducing inequality. They disagree, for instance...
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DELEGATIVE DEMOCRACY Guillermo O'Donnell Guillermo O'DonneU, an Argentine political scientist, is Helen Kellogg Professor of lnternational Studies and Academic Director of the Kellogg Institute of International Studies at the University of Notre Dame. His books include Modernization and Bureaucratic-Authoritarianism (1979); Bureaucratic-Authoritarianism: Argentina, 1966-1973, in Comparative Perspective (1988); and, with Philippe Schmitter and Laurence Whitehead, Transitions from Authoritarian Rule (1986). Here I depict a "new species," a type of existing democracies that has yet to be theorized. As often happens, it has many similarities with other, already recognized species, with cases shading off between the former and some variety of the latter. Still, I believe that the differences are significant enough to warrant an attempt at such a depiction. The drawing of neater boundaries between these types of democracy depends on empirical research, as well as more refined analytical work that I am now undertaking. But if I really have found a new species (and not a member of an already recognized family, or a form too evanescent to merit conceptualization), it may be worth exploring its main features. Scholars who have worked on democratic transitions and consolidation have repeatedly said that, since it would be wrong to assume that these processes all culminate in the same result, we need a typology of democracies. Some interesting efforts have been made, focused on the consequences, in terms of types of democracy and policy patterns, of various paths to democratization. I My own ongoing research suggests, however, that the more decisive factors for generating various kinds of democracy are not related to the characteristics of the preceding authoritarian regime or to the process of transition. Instead, I believe that we must focus upon various long-term historical factors, as well as the degree of severity of the socioeconomic problems that newly installed democratic governments inherit. Let me briefly state the main points of my argument: 1) Existing Journal of Democracy Vol. 5, No. 1 January 1994 56 Journal of Democracy theories and typologies of democracy refer to representative democracy as it exists, with all its variations and subtypes, in highly developed capitalist countries. 2) Some newly installed democracies (Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Philippines, Korea, and many postcommunist countries) are democracies, in the sense that they meet Robert Dahl's criteria for the definition of polyarchy. 2 3) Yet these democracies are not -- and do not seem to be on the path toward becoming -- representative democracies; they present characteristics that prompt me to call them delegative democracies (DD). 4) DDs are not consolidated (i.e., institutionalized) democracies, but they may be enduring. In many cases, there is no sign either of any imminent threat of an authoritarian regression, or of advances toward representative democracy. 5) There is an important interaction effect: the deep social and economic crisis that most of these countries inherited from their authoritarian predecessors reinforces certain practices and conceptions about the proper exercise of political authority that lead in the direction of delegative, not representative democracy. The following considerations underlie the argument presented above: 3 A) The installation of a democratically elected government opens the way for a "second transition," often longer and more complex than the initial transition from authoritarian rule. B) This second transition is supposed to be from a democratically elected government to an institutionalized, consolidated democratic regime. C) Nothing guarantees, however, that this second transition will occur. New democracies may regress to authoritarian rule, or they may stall in a feeble, uncertain situation. This situation may endure without opening avenues for institutionalized forms of democracy. D) The crucial element determining the success of the second transition is the building of a set of institutions that become important decisional points in the flow of political power. E) For such a successful outcome to occur, governmental policies and the political strategies of various agents must embody the recognition of a paramount shared interest in democratic institution building. The successful cases have featured a decisive coalition of broadly supported political leaders who take great care in creating and strengthening democratic political institutions. These institutions, in turn, have made it easier to cope with the social and economic problems inherited from the authoritarian regime. This...
Article
In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Journal of Democracy 9.2 (1998) 108-121 There is a widespread impression that corruption has been on the rise in Latin America over the past 20 years. Certainly, bribery is not new to the region, but massive graft seems to have proliferated, as suggested by scandals in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Venezuela, and other countries. Assuming that the perception of increased corruption reflects a real change, and is not due merely to better reporting and closer scrutiny by a more vigilant public, what are the main reasons behind this increase? Current explanations tend to stress heightened opportunities for extracting bribes more than incentives for doing so. As regards the former, many scholars have pointed to growing state interventionism, which gives bureaucrats and politicians broad discretion over temptingly vast resources. Other scholars, by contrast, have pointed to the recent wave of neoliberal reforms, during which bureaucrats and politicians disposed of huge portions of public property, often with limited transparency. While these factors were at work in some cases, they do not provide a sufficient explanation for the recent rise of corruption. As regards increased incentives for corruption, a prime suspect is the wave of democratization that has swept across Latin America over the last 25 years. By dispersing power and requiring the consent of several institutions in decision making, the return of democracy has extended the range of actors who can demand bribes. But democratization can hardly account for the rise of corruption in authoritarian Mexico or in a long-established democracy like Venezuela. Moreover, in principle, democratization should enhance the transparency of policy making and the accountability of politicians and bureaucrats, thereby limiting the spread of corruption. My own explanation therefore emphasizes an additional factor -- the rise of politicians who appeal to "the masses" via television. While ever more politicians use such appeals as one of their campaign tactics, mobilization of the previously unorganized has provided crucial bases of support for current or recent "neopopulist" leaders such as Argentina's Carlos Menem, Brazil's Fernando Collor de Mello, and Peru's Alan García. Over the past 15 years, such personalistic leaders have sought to bypass established political parties and interest groups in order to reach "the people" through direct, most often televised, appeals aimed at building up a loyal following from scratch. Because its methods are costly, the new media-based politics has given ambitious politicians much higher incentives to resort to corruption. In focusing on the rise of neopopulism, which has not received sufficient attention from analysts of corruption, I do not mean to deny that corruption can result from a variety of causes or combinations of causes. For instance, expanding state interventionism underlay the explosion of bribery in Mexico under President José López Portillo, while the neoliberal reduction of such interventionism offered huge opportunities for graft under his successor Carlos Salinas de Gortari. The drug trade has had a devastating impact on Colombia, Mexico, and (to a lesser extent) Peru, but has played a smaller role in Argentina, Brazil, and Venezuela. There are many sources of corruption, but the role of neopopulism is an important piece of this complicated puzzle. Corruption may be defined as the provision of material benefits to politicians and public officials in exchange for illicit influence over their decisions. The corruptor uses private benefits to induce a public decision maker to bend or break formal rules of procedure in order to confer on the corruptor special favors in the adjudication of rights or the allocation of resources. Although it may be tolerated by a country's citizens, corruption is, by definition, illegal. It is important to distinguish corruption, which entails the illegal sale of special favors, from political patronage, which occurs when public decision makers use their legal margin of discretion to confer favors on their friends and followers without receiving material benefits in return. Corruption can have two different purposes. Politicians and public officials may sell favorable decisions in order to accumulate funds for political purposes, such as a future election campaign. They may also use bribes to accumulate private wealth. Of course, the boundary between political and personal corruption is fluid. If, for instance, a politician has little chance of...
Article
Democratic reconstruction faces numerous obstacles in Latin America. The fall of authoritarian regimes and the election of new political leaders has not necessarily brought a renewal in political practices. Although the catastrophic economic situation of the majority of countries in the region during the 80s requires that radical measures be adopted, the populist type of electoral reconciliation seems unable to break clientelist resistance. The threat of ungovernability is pushing these governments to adopt neoliberal policies, the application of which is curtailed by the privileges of capital Experiments made in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, and Peru show that the political rhetoric is increasingly along populist lines and systematically denounces stabilization programs, which, in turn, become more orthodox. In the end, liberal-populist policies fail.
Article
Governing parties face two fundamental tasks: they must pursue policies effectively, and they must win elections. Their national coalitions, therefore, generally include two types of constituencies—those that are important for policy-making and those that make it possible to win elections. In effect, governing parties must bring together a policy coalition and an electoral coalition. This distinction sheds light on how the transitional costs of major economic policy shifts can be made sustainable in electoral terms. It also provides a starting point for analysis of how two of Latin America's most important labor-based parties, the Peronist party in Argentina and the Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI) in Mexico, maintained electoral dominance while pursuing free-market reforms that adversely affected key social constituencies. Peronism and the PRI are conceived of as having encompassed historically two distinctive and regionally based subcoalitions: a metropolitan coalition that gave support to the parties' development strategies and a peripheral coalition that carried the burden of generating electoral majorities. This framework permits a reconceptualization of the historic coalitional dynamics of Peronism and the PRI and sheds light on the current process of coalitional change and economic reform.
Article
This article has its origins in a generalized feeling of dissatisfaction with current theories about political development trends in Latin America. It is an early statement of a series of arguments which will subsequently be developed in a forthcoming book. The veritable explosion of empirically grounded monographs in the last fifteen or twenty years has made the task of producing a synthetic account of Latin American development simultaneously more pressing and more difficult: more difficult because it has made simple explanatory models harder to sustain, and has opened up the accepted historiography to serious and widespread revisionist attack; more pressing because many, if not most, social scientists accept the need to develop a theory of social change which is historically grounded, capable of explaining large-scale social transformations. My concern in this article is with the methodological issues involved in the formulation of an adequate theory of Latin American development, rather than with establishing new facts. There is considerable historiographical controversy over many of the events discussed in this article, and in these cases I have made my own judgement about where, on balance, the evidence points.
Article
Latin American populism has been characterized as a time-bound phenomenon, part of the political revolution against the old agricultural oligarchy and accompanying import-substitution industrialization. It has been asserted that populism died with the “exhaustion” of the “easy phase” of import-substitution, and that bureaucratic authoritarian regimes were predicated on that demise. Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, and Peru are regularly cited as evidence. This article examines these definitional premises in light of the apparent resurgence of populist politics in the democratic transition in Brazil. It is argued that populism is not a pre-1964 anachronism, but is predictably appealing in the 1980s. Distinctions among populistappeals, contention for power, andsuccessful populist order suggest that populism and its leaders offer a very limited alternative to the future of Brazilian politics.
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Why have political populism and economic liberalism coexisted under Presidents Menem in Argentina, Collor in Brazil, and Fujimori in Peru? In order to elucidate this surprising convergence, which established conceptions of populism did not expect, this article stresses some underlying affinities between neoliberalism and the new version of populism emerging in the 1980s. Both neopopulism and neoliberalism seek to win mass support primarily from unorganized people in the informal sector, while marginalizing autonomous organizations of better-off strata and attacking the “political class.” They both apply a top-down, state-centered strategy of wielding political power. Finally, neoliberal efforts to combat Latin America’s deep economic crisis yield some benefits for poorer sectors, to which neopopulist leaders appeal, while imposing especially high costs on many of the better-off opponents of neopopulism.
Article
A SIGNIFICANT DEVELOPMENT IN RECENT SOUTH AMERICAN POLITICS has been the re-emergence of populism. More interesting still has been the unexpected combination – in some countries – of traditional populist appeals (successfully made), the determined application of free market policies, and the successful re-election of the market-reforming populists. This does not mean that populist politicians can succeed to order. Many populist candidates have sought election and only a few have secured it. Of those elected as (essentially) independent candidates, only some have succeeded. Presidents Bucaram in Ecuador and Collor in Brazil were removed from office by Congress and subjected to legal proceedings for corruption. However, where populists have succeeded, they have done so on a far more impressive scale than most people originally predicted.
1 refer to "radial concepts" as presented by Collier and Mahon, not to the interesting but different interpretation by Pierre Ostiguy
  • David Collier
  • James Mahon
David Collier and James Mahon, Jr., "Conceptual 'Stretching' Revisited," American Political Science Review, 87 (December 1993), 845-55. 1 refer to "radial concepts" as presented by Collier and Mahon, not to the interesting but different interpretation by Pierre Ostiguy, "The Concept of Democracy: A Radial Category" (unpublished, 1992).
What Makes a Concept Good?
  • John Recently
  • Gerring
Recently, John Gerring, "What Makes a Concept Good?," Polity, 31 (Spring 1999), 363-64.
CommentChile's Populism Reconsidered Populism; Lynch; Jose Nun
  • Paul Drake
Paul Drake, "Comment," in Dornbusch and Edwards, eds.; Paul Drake, "Chile's Populism Reconsidered, 1920s-1990s," in Conniff, ed., Populism; Lynch; Jose Nun, "Populismo, Representacion y Menemismo," Sociedad, 5 (October 1994),
Populismo y Fujimorismo
  • Anibal Quijano
Anibal Quijano, "Populismo y Fujimorismo," in Burbano, ed.; Carlos Vilas, "Latin American Populism," Science and Society, 56 (Winter 1992-1993), 389-420;
On the Concept of Populism
  • Knight
  • Mayorga
Knight; Mayorga, pp. 29-30; Nicos Mouzelis, "On the Concept of Populism," Politics and Society, 14 (September 1985), 329-48;
Comparative Definition
  • Conniff
Conniff, "Comparative Definition," pp. 13-23;
An exception is Torcuato di TellaPopulism and Reform in Latin America
  • Francisco Weffort
Francisco Weffort, 0 Populismo na Politica Brasileira (Rio de Janeiro: Paz e Terra, 1980), pp. 69, 73-74. An exception is Torcuato di Tella, "Populism and Reform in Latin America,' in Claudio Veliz. ed., Obstacles to Change in Latin America (London: Oxford University Press, 1965).
Requiem for Populism?
  • Drake
Drake, "Requiem for Populism?," in Conniff, ed., Latin American Populism, p. 218. 26. Octavio lanni, La Formacion del Estado Populista en America Latina (Mexico: Era, 1975), pp. 121-22, 137-77;
Politics and Economtic Change in Latin America
  • Charles Anderson
Charles Anderson, Politics and Economtic Change in Latin America (New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1967), pp. 89-101.
By contrast, President Clinton did not call for mass demonstrations or a plebiscite when facing impeachment proceedings. Similarly, when Brazil's constituent assembly threatened to abridge presiden-tial powers in 1987-88
  • Philip
Philip, p. 84. 66. By contrast, President Clinton did not call for mass demonstrations or a plebiscite when facing impeachment proceedings. Similarly, when Brazil's constituent assembly threatened to abridge presiden-tial powers in 1987-88, incumbent Jose Sarney appealed, not to the masses, but to clientelist politicians and the military.
Conversaciones con Carlos Menem (Buenos Aires: Editorial Fraterna
  • In Mario
  • Baizan
In Mario Baizan, Conversaciones con Carlos Menem (Buenos Aires: Editorial Fraterna, 1993), p. 21.
Buenos Aires: Planeta, 1997), pp. 273-75; Carlos Bolona, Cambio de Rumbo (Lima: Instituto de Economia de Libre Mercado, 1993), pp. vii-ix, 202. 82. But it excludes organized parties with muted personalistic leadership, such as Venezuela's Accion Democratica since the
  • Weyland
Weyland, "Neopopulism." 81. Domingo Cavallo, El Peso de la Verdad (Buenos Aires: Planeta, 1997), pp. 273-75; Carlos Bolona, Cambio de Rumbo (Lima: Instituto de Economia de Libre Mercado, 1993), pp. vii-ix, 202. 82. But it excludes organized parties with muted personalistic leadership, such as Venezuela's Accion Democratica since the 1960s.
Cardoso and Faletto, ch. 5; O'Donnell, Modernization
  • Weffort
Weffort, p. 159; Cardoso and Faletto, ch. 5; O'Donnell, Modernization, pp. 53-57; lanni; Weffort, chs. 3, 7. 34. For example, Robert Dix, "Populism: Authoritarian and Democratic," Latin American Research Review, 20 (1985), 29-52.
Populism's instrumental nature becomes evident in the case of Brazil's Getulio Vargas, who led a nonpopulist, authoritarian government (1930-45) and adopted populism only when he faced a strong democratizing challenge and sought to regain power in the new democracy
  • Knight
Knight. Populism's instrumental nature becomes evident in the case of Brazil's Getulio Vargas, who led a nonpopulist, authoritarian government (1930-45) and adopted populism only when he faced a strong democratizing challenge and sought to regain power in the new democracy.
  • O Guillermo
  • Philippe Donnell
  • Schmitter
Guillermo O'Donnell and Philippe Schmitter, Tentative Conclusions about Uncertain Democracies (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986), pp. 7-14. 45. Perruci and Sanderson, pp. 34-36. 46. Sanborn, pp. 47, 340-49, 382. 47. Knight, pp. 240-44.
Amerique Latine: Les Echecs du Liberal-Populisme Revue Canalienne d'Etludes di Developpement
  • Graciela Ducatenzeiler
  • Philippe Faucher
  • Julian Castro Rea
Graciela Ducatenzeiler, Philippe Faucher, and Julian Castro Rea, "Amerique Latine: Les Echecs du Liberal-Populisme," Revue Canalienne d'Etludes di Developpement, 14 (1993), 175; Weyland, '"Neopopulism," p. 5. 62. Charles Anderson, Politics and Economtic Change in Latin America (New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1967), pp. 89-101.
Political Parties (Cambridge
  • See Angelo Panebianco
See Angelo Panebianco, Political Parties (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988), ch. 8;
Shaping the Political Arena
  • Jaguaribe
Jaguaribe, pp. 7-17; similarly, Ruth Berins Collier and David Collier, Shaping the Political Arena (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991), pp. 161-68, 788. 30. Cardoso and Faletto, ch. 5; O'Donnell, Modernization, pp. 53-57.
Tensions in the Bureaucratic-Authoritarian State The New Authoritarianism in Latin AmericaPeronism and Anti-Peronism," paper prepared for the twentieth LASA CongressChile's PopulismReturn of the Caudillo
  • Ernesto Laclau
  • O Politik Und Ideologie Im Marxismus Guillermo
  • Pierre Donnell De La Torre
  • Ostiguy
Ernesto Laclau, Politik und Ideologie im Marxismus (Berlin: Argument, 1981); discussion in Roxborough, p. 10; also, Guillermo O'Donnell, "Tensions in the Bureaucratic-Authoritarian State," in David Collier, ed., The New Authoritarianism in Latin America (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1979), pp. 288-94; de la Torre; and Pierre Ostiguy, "Peronism and Anti-Peronism," paper prepared for the twentieth LASA Congress, Guadalajara, April 17-19, 1997. 49. Similarly, Drake, "Chile's Populism," p. 63; Philip Mauceri, "Return of the Caudillo," Third World Quarterly, 18 (1997), 900, 909; Gibson, p. 340.
On the Concept of PopulismNeopopulismToward a Comparative Definition of Populism
  • Knight
  • Mayorga
Knight; Mayorga, pp. 29-30; Nicos Mouzelis, "On the Concept of Populism," Politics and Society, 14 (September 1985), 329-48; Weyland, "Neopopulism." 23. Michael Conniff, "Toward a Comparative Definition of Populism," in Michael Conniff, ed., Latin American Populism in Comparative Perspective (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1982), pp. 21-22; Paul Drake, Socialism and Populism in Chile (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1978), pp. 2-3, 8; Francisco Weffort, 0 Populismo na Politica Brasileira (Rio de Janeiro: Paz e Terra, 1980), pp. 69, 73-74. An exception is Torcuato di Tella, "Populism and Reform in Latin America,' in Claudio Veliz. ed., Obstacles to Change in Latin America (London: Oxford University Press, 1965).
Even Collier and Levitsky
  • Ibid
Ibid., pp. 32-33, 54-57. 10. Ibid., p. 47. 11. Even Collier and Levitsky, p. 450, admit these dangers. 12. Ibid., pp. 435-41,450-51. 13. Ibid., p. 440.
Los Caudillos Electorales de la Posmodernidad
  • Carlos Vilas
Carlos Vilas, "Los Caudillos Electorales de la Posmodernidad," Socialismo y Participacion, 69 (March 1995), 31-43.
Unity and Diversity in Latin American History
  • Anibal Viguera
Anibal Viguera. "Populismo' y 'Neopopulismo' en America Latina," Revista iMexicana de Sociologia, 55 (July 1993), 49-66. 3. lan Roxborough. "Unity and Diversity in Latin American History," Journal of Latin American Studies, 16 (May 1984), 14.
Neoliberalism and the Transformation of Populism in Latin America 82-1 16; Cynthia SanbornThe Democratic Left and the Persistence of Populism in Peru
  • Kenneth Roberts
Kenneth Roberts, "Neoliberalism and the Transformation of Populism in Latin America," World Politics, 48 (October 1995), 82-1 16; Cynthia Sanborn, "The Democratic Left and the Persistence of Populism in Peru" (Ph.D. diss.. Harvard University, 1991); Viguera: Kurt Weyland, "Neopopulism and Neoliberalism in Latin America," Studies in Comparative International Developmnent, 3 1 (Fall 1996). 3-3 1.
Is There an Ideological Link between Neopopulism and Neoliberalism?," paper presented for twenty-second LASA Congress
  • Victor Armony
Victor Armony, "Is There an Ideological Link between Neopopulism and Neoliberalism?," paper presented for twenty-second LASA Congress. Atlanta, March 16-18, 2000;