9th Conference European Sociological Association

RN32 Political Sociology

2009-09-03 09:00:00 2009-09-03 10:30:00 Thursday, 3 September 09:00 - 10:30 The Extreme Right Building I, 2E10

How About Taking Gender in the Theorizing of Populism?

The article involves in a constructive criticism with the theorizing of radical right populism and argues for the inclusion of a gendered perspective in the field. With the Italian political scene as a backdrop, the article departs from the substantive ambiguity of the defining concept of populism and its noteworthy closeness to that of nationalism. The constitutive elements of populism as a thin ideology and their imagined property are scrutinized, and juxtaposed to a feminist theorizing of nationalism. The conceptual homogeneity of 'the people', the dichotomous relationship between 'the people' and 'the elites', and the concept of popular sovereignty and subsequently that of charismatic leadership, are scrutinized. A feminist take on nationalism is employed to suggest possible entry points for a gendered analysis of radical right populism.