25 August 2013

Conference: The mainstreaming of the extreme right

The mainstreaming of the extreme right
University of Bath

Date: Friday 20 September 2013
Time: 10.00-17.30
Room: 6 E. 2.1
Audience: This event is open to all, with registration in advance.

Theme: Governance and policy design

Purpose of event: In these times of social and economic crises, and although the extreme left has witnessed a revival of sorts, there is no doubt that the extreme right has become the fastest growing political family in Europe.

However, although the ideas of extreme right parties are growing in popularity, their historical legacies often remain an obstacle preventing them from appealing to wider audiences. In this context two crucial developments have occurred, with significant implications for the future of our liberal democracies.

The first is that the extreme right has begun to reassess its programme, ideology and rhetoric, and adapt to its time and place in order to compete for power. Some see this shift as evidence of a significant realignment from an ‘extreme’ to a more moderate and acceptable form of far right or populist right. Others argue that this shift is more superficial than it appears to be, and that it is in fact part of a hegemonic strategy to reclaim political legitimacy.

The second is the rightward move and even radicalisation of the discourse and politics of the mainstream parties; particularly those on the right of the mainstream spectrum who, at least initially, suffered the most electoral loses as the extreme right began to rise.

The aim of this conference is to discuss these issues and to highlight their impact on liberal democracies through a series of case studies. The outcomes of the conference will form the basis of an edited collection of articles on the topic.

Programme and more info here.

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