Lance Bennett, Professor of Political Science and Ruddick C. Lawrence Professor of Communication, University of Washington, Seattle, USA
Chair: Natalie Fenton, Goldsmiths.
Populism is sweeping conventional wisdom as the problem facing democracies these days. However, the term is often ill defined, and, however defined, it may be just a symptom of deeper crises of democracy.
Many democracies today face growing economic and political inequality, the hollowing out of center parties and related declines in electoral representation, along with business interests overshadowing government and civil society. In light of these problems, the academic and media discourses about populism may confuse cause and effect, and obscure more serious political developments such as the rise of undemocratic movements and parties on the radical right that end up helping the neoliberal project whether or not that is their intent. The efforts on the contemporary right to impose divisive definitions of "true citizens" and deny rights and benefits to others creates social disruption, violence and disinformation that further undermines democratic governance and favors authoritarian capitalism
Dates & times
If you are attending an event and need the College to help with any mobility requirements you may have, please contact the event organiser in advance to ensure we can accommodate your needs.