Populism and Liberal Democracy: A Comparative and Theoretical Analysis

ISBN : 9780198837886

Takis S. Pappas
336 Pages
156 x 234 mm
Pub date
Apr 2019
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Populism and Liberal Democracy is the first book to offer a comprehensive theory about populism during both its emergence and consolidation phases in three geographical regions: Europe, Latin America and the United States. Based on the detailed comparison of all significant cases of populist governments (including Argentina, Greece, Peru, Italy, Venezuela, Ecuador, Hungary, and the U.S.) and two cases of populist failure (Spain and Brazil), each of the book's seven chapters addresses a specific question: What is populism? How to distinguish populists from non-populists? What causes populism? How and where does populism thrive? How do populists govern? Who is the populist voter? How does populism endanger democracy? If rising populism is a threat to liberal democratic politics, as this book clearly shows, it is only by answering the questions it posits that populism may be resisted successfully.


List of Figures
List of Tables
List of Political Parties
Part I: Populism In Theory
1 What is Populism?
1.1 The Epistemology of Populism
1.2 Dealing with Deficient Premises
1.3 The Minimal Definition
1.4 The Overall Framework of Analysis
2 How to Distinguish Populists from Non-Populists?
2.1 Understanding Liberalism
2.2 Why Populism Matters
2.3 Spotting the Populists
2.4 Telling Non-Populists Apart
3 What Causes Populism?
3.1 The Ordinary People
3.2 Extraordinary Leadership
3.3 Symbolic Politics
3.4 The Causal Model
Part II: Populism In Action
4 How and Where does Populism Thrive?
4.1 Populism Ascendant: Seven Positive Cases
4.2 Populism Evaded: Two Negative Cases
4.3 New Kid in Town: United States 2016
5 How do Populists Govern?
5.1 Power Seizure
5.2 The Illiberal Project: A Rationalization
6 Who is the Populist Voter?
6.1 Inside the Populist Mind
6.2 An Empirical Illustration: Greece 2015
7 How Does Populism Endanger Democracy?
7.1 Populist Pathways
7.2 Populism Resisted
Glossary of Key Terms

About the author: 

Takis S. Pappas has a PhD from Yale University and is a comparative political science researcher and writer affiliated with the University of Helsinki, Finland. He is the author of Making Party Democracy in Greece (Macmillan,1999),Populism and Crisis Politics in Greece (Palgrave, 2014), and the co-editor of European Populism in the Shadow of the Great Recession (ECPR, 2015).

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