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The growth of the nationalist right in Europe and the United States has set off a debate over whether “economic anxiety” or “racial resentment” is at the root of this…
The growth of the nationalist right in Europe and the United States has set off a debate over whether “economic anxiety” or “racial resentment” is at the root of this phenomenon. Examining the case of the French National Front, I suggest that this is a poor way of posing the question of the significance of class in explaining the rise of the nationalist right. Recent advances by the National Front—particularly among working-class voters—have tended to be attributed to the party's strategic pivot toward a “leftist” economic program and an embrace of the republican tradition. This in turn has been critically interpreted in two different ways. Some take the FN’s strategic pivot at face value and see the party's success as the expression of a new political cleavage between cosmopolitanism and communitarianism. Others see the National Front's embrace of republicanism as a cynical ploy hiding its true face. Both interpretations, however, point to a strategy of “republican defense” as a means to counteract the National Front. I argue that this strategy is likely to misfire and that class remains central to explaining—and countering—the rise of the National Front, albeit in a peculiar way. Working-class support for the National Front does indeed appear to be driven primarily by ethno-cultural, not class, interests, but this is itself predicated on a historical decline in the political salience of class due to the neoliberal depoliticization of the economy. I argue that it was this disarticulation of class identity that helped deliver the working-class vote to the National Front and that any strategy for combating the nationalist right must thus find new ways to articulate a class identity capable of neutralizing racist and chauvinist articulations.
This chapter focuses on the anti-European stance as it unfolds in Marine Le Pen’s and Jean-Marie Le Pen’s discourses. As most far-right parties in Europe, both politicians…
This chapter focuses on the anti-European stance as it unfolds in Marine Le Pen’s and Jean-Marie Le Pen’s discourses. As most far-right parties in Europe, both politicians focus on the notion of freedom and national sovereignty, asserting a strong anti-European Union stance; however, they construct their anti-European momentum by playing on different strategies and emotions. By using corpus linguistics tools, the present study examines and analyses the discourse of both politicians in interviews and debates. It concludes that if they share most issues on which they base their political agenda such as the fear of increasing immigration because of the Schengen’s agreement, they differ as regards the ways they discursively address the same issue. Marine Le Pen relies more on a constructive/rational stance, by focusing on facts and figures as well as on solutions, while moving away from the strong and negative emotions which her father constantly used mainly as provocation strategies. This may have helped her build a favourable political momentum as witnessed in the 2014 European elections.
This chapter examines US Africa Policy under Obama with a particular focus on the Southern African region. The author examines American policy from a historical…
This chapter examines US Africa Policy under Obama with a particular focus on the Southern African region. The author examines American policy from a historical perspective to give credence to his view that while certain changes have occurred in American global and Africa Policy in particular, it is the issues that have changed, and the drivers of that policy change but the fundamental basis of the American policy has not changed much. American policy has remained anchored on global hegemony driven by the increasingly frayed Washington consensus as expressed initially in its Cold War rhetoric and stance against the former USSR and its perceived allies and now against terrorism.
This work examines the existing literature on Southern African history and politics written by scholars and observers including regional heads of state like Nyerere of Tanzania and Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia. This study also draws from the author’s knowledge and experiences as a citizen and observer over the years of the many facets of vicissitudes of regional politics and is interface with international foreign policy pressures and interests. This work thus, draws from the literature on and about regional politics and international relations over the years coupled by the author’s personal experiences.
This chapter makes clear link between Cold War politics and current American foreign policy on African and the Southern African region in particular. In fact the US anti-terrorism rhetoric has remained consistent during and after the Cold War. During the Cold War, liberation movements in Southern Africa fighting to end colonial rule and racist apartheid regime were declared terrorist movements and hence the subject of US hostility especially given these movements’ support for arms and materials from the USSR and China. USSR was manufactured as the organizer of international terrorism. Proxy wars were waged to deal with these movements and their supporters such as the war in Angola where the United States supported dubious and questionable characters like Jonas Savimbi of the National Union for the Total Liberation of Angola (UNITA) and Holden Robert of the Front for the National Liberation of Angola (FNLA) and Zairian dictator, Mobutu SeseSeko. While FNLA was widely accepted as a CIA outfit, Mobutu was imposed by US intelligence support (CIA) against a popular leader, Patrice Lumumba, who was assassinated shortly after independence.
At the end of the Cold War a new form of terrorism manifested itself in the form of Muslim Jihadists who on the continent were seen to emerge in East Africa and the Horn of Africa and the American fascination has been to ensure that this terrorism does not afflict the rest of the continent and the Southern African region in particular. Support to African governments has shifted from the initial years of confused neglect complimented with ambivalent engagement and finally, to humanitarianism. This has taken the form of the support to Africa to fight HIV and AIDS so as to harvest a favourable ground among African governments. This was seen as helping to ensconce American support in the region and weaken the ground for the Al Qaeda intrusion, real or imagined. It was also hoped that this might help counter growing Chinese influence. It is not entirely surprising too that the economic and strategic focus has been to sustain a declining hegemonic position especially in a region where Chinese investments and influence have outstripped American and Western influence.
Years after the 2011 uprising Egypt, it seems that the country’s non-Islamist parties are still included in the political game. After significant alterations in their…
Years after the 2011 uprising Egypt, it seems that the country’s non-Islamist parties are still included in the political game. After significant alterations in their political sphere by mid-2013 at the advent of the Muslim Brother exclusion and the subsequent discrediting of Salafi al-Nour party, non-Islamist parties took clear part in the mobilization for presidential elections (2014, 2018) and competed for legislative seats in 2015. Nonetheless, it is difficult to expect them to turn into long-term key political players with clear-cut ideological postures, unique platforms and strong grass root mobilization. With the exception of the electoral gains scored by numbered parties like Free Egyptians’ party and Nation’s Future in 2015 legislative elections, these parties seem to be lagging behind esp. in terms of their popular base; who became winners at the advent of the radical exclusion of the MB from July 2013 onwards.
This paper is based on archival research and guided by basic assumptions of rational choice institutionalism, mainly game-theoretic versions of the approach. It is divided into four sections, three of them are chronological and the last one is thematic.
Egypt’s non-Islamists engaged in the post-2011 political sphere, with strong Islamist rivals crippling their political chances in the first two years following the 2011 uprising. They surely capitalized on the exclusion and discrediting of the latter, but they suffered lack of ideological clarity and fragmentation from 2011 onwards with no enough evidence these weaknesses were surpassed after Islamists were “out of their way”. The only strand of non-Islamist parties which came out as “game winners” were those possessing the resources and enjoying overt “friendly” relations with al-Sisi regime. Nonetheless, internal conflicts inside key secularist parties shed light on their capacity to turn into long-term players in Egypt’s political sphere.
Very few papers were published on Egypt’s secularists parties after the 2011 uprising from the perspective of the alteration that occurred in their political environment affecting their political weight and gains. More generally, literature on non-ruling parties in authoritarian contexts mostly reduce these parties to secondary roles allocated by ruling regimes. The paper seeks to overcome both shortages.
The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of using proportional representation system on the fragmentation of the party system in the Algerian political system…
The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of using proportional representation system on the fragmentation of the party system in the Algerian political system within the period from 1997 to 2017, in which Algeria has experienced five legislative elections regularly every five years by testing a hypothesis about adopting the proportional representation system on the basis of the closed list during the foregoing legislative elections has obviously influenced the exacerbation of the Algerian party system’s fragmentation, compared to other factors.
The essence of the theoretical framework of this study is to address the effect of the electoral system as an independent variable on the party system as a dependent variable. The starting point for that framework is to reassess the “Duverger’s law,” which appeared since the early 1950s and has influenced the foregoing relationship, and then to review the literature on a new phase that tried to provide a more accurate mechanism for determining the number of parties and their relative weight, whether in terms of electoral votes or parliamentary seats. This means that researchers began to use a measure called the effective number of parties (ENP) for Laakso and Taagepera since 1979. The study elaborates the general concepts of the electoral system and the party system. It used Laakso, Taagepera index of the “ENP” to measure the phenomenon of fragmentation party during the five legislative elections from 1997 to 2017 in Algeria.
The results of the study reveal that the proportional representation electoral system – beside other factors – had clear impacts on the fragmentation of the Algerian party system by all standards, whether on the level of the apparent rise in the number of the parties represented in the Algerian parliament from 10 parties in 1997 election to 36 parties in 2017 election or according to the index of Laakso and Taagepera (ENP). The average number of effective number of electoral parties in the five elections was around 7.66, and the average number of effective number of parliamentary parties in the five elections was around 4.39, which puts Algeria in an advanced degree of the fragmentation of the party system.
This study about the phenomenon of the fragmentation of the party system, which is one of the new subjects in the field of comparative politics – globally and in the Arab world. Hence, the value of this study aims to shed light on this mysterious area of science, the fragmentation of the party system in the Algerian political system during the period from 1997 to 2017.
Drawing on ethnographic research among far-right youth movements, this chapter discusses the view of a “new Europe” as manifested in young activists' discourses and…
Drawing on ethnographic research among far-right youth movements, this chapter discusses the view of a “new Europe” as manifested in young activists' discourses and practices. In arguing that it is necessary to better understand local contexts of political mobilization, it simultaneously foregrounds the transnational orientation of young far-right militants and the interplay of local and translocal factors in shaping their activism. In so doing, this chapter seeks to shed light on the background and the main rationale for their alternative conceptualizing of Europe and to situate it in a long tradition of thinking about Europe, recognizing similarities with the developments in the early twentieth century.