Aurelien Mondon is a senior lecturer in French and comparative politics at the University of Bath, working on populism, the extreme right, abstention and the crisis of democracy. His research can be found here. He tweets @aurelmondon
The idea behind the referendum has never been to offer the people a debate between a neoliberal Europe and a social Britain, but between a neoliberal UK within a neoliberal EU, and a neoliberal UK outside a neoliberal EU.
Populism is a political style whereby the populist creates her/his ‘people’ according to her/his ideological goals. ‘The people’ therefore can take many shapes and forms and be used in both inclusive and exclusive ways.
As is now common in France, the biggest shock in the Euro elections will come from the far-right Front National, emboldened by a change in perception towards the party from many French voters. Euro elections landscape, 2014.
democracy really means is the capacity to do things. While the governing elite
has increasingly borrowed populist rhetoric from the extreme right to win
elections, it has also used the growth of populism to discredit the concept of
‘the people’ and redefine the meaning of democracy.
MOOCs (massive open online courses)
and more freely available lectures and university content are transforming
the education landscape, and alliances between academia and corporations are ever-increasing. But this revolution
in education might pose a lethal threat for hardly commodifiable
disciplines such as those of the humanities.
While history tells us that Marine Le Pen would not stand a chance in the second round of the presidential elections, it has also shown that France could take a terrible turn as a result of her mere presence.
Sarkozy’s presidential term has made the front page more often for his private life than for his policies; this has undermined his possibilities for a re-election and increased the chances for opposition candidates.