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Comparative European politics: the radical right in Europe


Monday, 27 April 2020 to Wednesday, 13 May 2020
Total hours: 20
Hours of lectures: 20

Examination procedure

  • oral exam


Optional for the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th year students of the PhD Programme in "Political Science and Sociology"

Optional for the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th year students of the PhD Programme in "Transnational Governance"

Optional for the 4th and 5th year students of the MA Programme in "Political and Social Sciences"


Overview of course:

The resurgence of strong radical right wing parties and movements constitutes one of the most significant political changes in European democratic states during the past several decades. The radical right’s come back has notably attracted interests from political scientists, sociologists and historians, although the majority of past research focuses on party and electoral politics.

This course not only covers this existing literature but also examines the radical right as a social movement rather than political parties, all over Europe and beyond. In particular, this course aims to provide researchers with basic knowledge of key topics in the scholarly literature on the radical right, while fostering critical debate on some of the most contested issues surrounding it. It course will revise the more than abundant literature on the radical right, focusing on conceptual issues and definitions, on the causes and consequences of the phenomenon as well as on some methods to study radical right parties and movements. The new concept of radical right ‘movement-parties’ will be introduced, as a new lens though which address organizational transformations of the radical right in contemporary democracies as well as the relations between radical right parties and movements within changing European political and party systems. During the course we will try to link the theoretical debate with practical implementation through the illustration of concrete case studies and applied research.

Bibliographical references


Jens, Rydgren (2018), The Radical Right: An Introduction, The Oxford Handbook of the Radical right, Oxford.

Herbert Kitschelt (2018), Party Systems and Radical Right-Wing Parties, The Oxford Handbook of the Radical right, Oxford.

Manuela Caiani and Donatella della Porta (2018), The Radical Right as Social Movement Organizations , The Oxford Handbook of the Radical right, Oxford.

Lenka Buštíková (2018), The Radical Right in Eastern Europe, The Oxford Handbook of the Radical Right



Muis, Jasper C., and Tim Immerzeel (2017). ‘Radical Right Populism’, Qualitative Sociology(literature review of the micro, meso macro causes)

Kriesi, Hanspeter (2018). ‘The determinants of the vote for the radical right and the radical left in Western Europe’, paper presented at the EUI Workshop on Populism, 3 May 2018 (individuals and voting)

Tjitske AkkermanSarah L. de LangeMatthijs Rooduijn (2016), Radical Right-Wing Populist Parties in Western Europe Into the Mainstream?, chapter 2  (meso level and organizational level)

Pirro A (2015) The Populist Radical Right in Central and Eastern Europe: Ideology, Impact, and Electoral Performance. London: Routledge, Introduction and conclusion.

Lise Esther HermanJames Muldoon (2018), Trumping the Mainstream: The Conquest of Democratic Politics by the Populist Radical Right, Routledge (chapter 1 and conclusion)

Michelle Hale Williams (2018), The Political Impact of the Radical Right, The Oxford Handbook of the Radical Right