Interview #31 – The Contagious Effect of the Radical Right

In this interview, Tarik Abou-Chadi explains that when radical right parties are successful (and especially when they enter parliament), mainstream parties shift toward a more anti-immigrant position. This is hardly surprising. However, according to his studies, this is a totally counterproductive move, and established parties should not go in pursuit of anti-immigration discourses because that would make them lose votes. If there is an “original” nativist and anti-immigration party, why voting an imitation?

Moreover, he claims that the shift toward more anti-immigrant positions of established parties that we have witnessed in the past 20 years is not simply a representation of public opinion, but a strategic move towards the success of radical right parties. In fact, in most Western European countries attitudes toward immigration have become more positive.

In other words: would we have seen the same anti-immigrant shift by established parties had the radical right not been successful? 

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Interview #3 – Anders Hellström about Nordic Populism

Anders Hellström

Anders Hellström

Why populism in Scandinavia seems to be more and more successful? What can explain the presence of right-wing populist parties in governing coalitions in Finland, Denmark, and Norway, while in Sweden Sverigedemokraterna doubled its consensus from last elections becoming the third party?

In order to answer these questions, POP decided to interview Anders Hellström. He is associate professor in political science, currently based at the Malmö Institute for studies of diversity, migration and welfare. He chairs a comparative project on Nordic populism, funded by NOS-HS in the period 2013–2015. A new book will be published by Berghahn Books later this year. It will be titled “Trust Us: Reproducing the Nation and the Scandinavian Nationalist Populist Parties“. He has written several books and articles about Populism and nationalism in relation to European integration, identity politics, discourse theory and the nationalist populist parties in Sweden and elsewhere.

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