There is a consensus that right, and left-wing populism is on the rise on both sides of the Atlantic, from Donald Trump in the United States, to Spain's leftist Podemos. These may utilize different kinds of populist mobilizations but the fact remains that elite and mass opinion is fuelling a populist backlash. In Populism and Passions, twelve scholars engage with discourse analysis, democratic theory, and post structural political thought to study the political logic of passion for contemporary populism. Together these interdisciplinary essays demonstrate what emotional engagement implies for the spheres of politics and the social, and how it governs and mobilizes individuals. The volume presents: Theoretical and empirical implications for political analysis; Chapters on the current rise of populism, both right and left-wing trends, their different ideological features, and their relationship with the logic of passion; Theoretical implications for the future study of populism and democratic legitimacy. A timely analysis of this political phenomena in contemporary Western democracies, Populism and Passions is ideal for students and scholars in political theory, comparative politics, social theory, critical theory, cultural studies, and global studies.
Despite the burgeoning growth of populism studies, there are still areas in the field which remain underdeveloped. This volume, through the interdisciplinary study of the relationship between populism and passions, fills a crucial gap in one of those areas. It does so in an insightful, theoretically robust and empirically-informed way, bringing together younger researchers and established scholars. This is a must-read for anyone interested in the populist phenomenon and on the role that passions play in contemporary democratic politics. -Giorgos Katsambekis, Loughborough University