- The student is able to define and to evaluate the main characteristics of populism by making use of concepts and ideas from the work of Jan-Werner Müller and Ernesto Laclau.
- The student understands the causes of the rise of populism and the relationship between populism and nationalist and antiglobalist movements.
- The student understands the relationship between different conceptions of populism and different theories of democracy.
- The student is able to evaluate the importance and the limits of active citizenship in light of the rise of populism, making use of concepts and ideas from post-Marxism and contemporary republicanism.
All over the world, liberal democracies – even established ones such as the US, UK, France and the Netherlands – are confronted with a rise in populism. Are populist politicians such as Donald Trump, Marine Le Pen and Geert Wilders a threat to or a blessing for our democracies? What exactly characterizes populism and how does it relate to nationalism and movements that resist globalization? Where do anti-establishment sentiments come from and what can be done to address them? May a more active conception of citizenship be part of the solution?|
We discuss standard texts on populism (Jan-Werner Müller, Ernesto Laclau,...), theory of democracy (Robert Dahl, Chantal Mouffe,...) and republicanism (Michael Sandel, Philip Pettit,...).