Matteo Bonotti reviews 'Populism Now! The case for progressive populism' by David McKnight

Matteo Bonotti reviews 'Populism Now! The case for progressive populism' by David McKnight

Populism Now!: The case for progressive populism

by David McKnight

NewSouth, $29.99 pb, 208 pp, 9781742235639

Over the past few years, no term has been more ubiquitous, among political scientists and political commentators alike, than ‘populism’. The 2016 Brexit referendum in the United Kingdom, Donald Trump’s election later that year, and, more recently, the formation of a government mostly supported by two populist parties (the Movimento Cinque Stelle/Five Star Movement and the Lega/League) in Italy, are only some examples of what many observers consider a global populist wave. Most of the growing debate on populism, however, has focused on right-wing populism, due to the ideological underpinnings of the majority of populist movements and actors emerging in Europe and North America as part of this global wave. Yet populism is not inherently associated with right-wing ideological positions. It is, itself, an ideology, but one that is sufficiently broad, or ‘thin-centred’ (Cas Mudde), to be combined with thicker ideological positions, both on the right and left of the political spectrum.

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Published in August 2018, no. 403
Matteo Bonotti

Matteo Bonotti

Mark Gibeau is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Culture, History and Languages, College of Asia and the Pacific, The Australian National University. He lectures in Japanese language and literature and focuses primarily on postwar Japanese literature and literary translation. His most recent project is a retranslation of Dazai Osamu’s seminal novel, A Shameful Life (Ningen shikkaku), due to be published by Stone Bridge Press in November 2018. []

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