The Politics of Fear is sadly more timely than ever. Ruth Wodak’s critical analysis provides clear insights as to why and how in a world that benefits from the free flow of goods, ideas and people, exclusionary nationalism and populism are gaining ground.
An ambitious and unflinching scholarly analysis of the discursive world of right-wing populist movements in Europe. At a time when such movements have rapidly and dramatically shifted from the periphery to the parliament, Wodak’s clear-eyed analysis has never been more urgent or important. Understanding the symbols, myths and languages deployed by such movements is key to interpreting their widespread popularity and their narrow, and often hostile, vision of Europe’s future.
Through sharp and lucid analysis based on a wealth of examples and case studies, the second edition of Ruth Wodak’s masterly The Politics of Fear provides readers from all backgrounds with the essential tools to fully grasp the threat the far right poses and the role the mainstream has played in its rise.
A masterwork. Ruth Wodak analyses and explains how far-right populist parties use fear in their political discourses and provides a template for future studies of far-right populism.
Given international developments, the new edition of this classic study of the discourses of the extreme right is more relevant even than the first edition, in which Ruth Wodak continues a long and eminent trajectory of research on racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia and patriarchy. This specific book is especially timely because it describes and explains in great detail the discursive and social mechanisms of the growing influence of extremist right-wing ideologies, policies and politics in Europe. This is Critical Discourse Analysis at its best.
In a masterful synthesis, Ruth Wodak combines argumentation theory, rhetorical and discourse-historical analysis to the resurgent discourses of right-wing populism, racism, sexism and xenophobia in Europe and the US. A highly topical insight into and inditement of the politics of fear and exclusionism.
The first edition of The Politics of Fear was an important book but this revised edition is even more important. Ruth Wodak shows how shamelessly successful right-wing populism has become, as it takes ideas from the far right and makes them appear as the new normal. Wodak analyses this dangerous, divisive politics with sustained brilliance.
One of the most respected and influential discourse analysts of our time offers a thorough characterization of far-right populism and its political strategies. Wodak explains the processes that have led to the rise of what she calls “shameless normalization” with examples from all over the world: from political speeches, to tweets, to posters. An essential reading for all interested in the intersections between discourse, politics and social life in our post-digital societies.
A must read for those interested in intersectionality in far-right populist discourse. It covers the politics of racialization, gender, nationalism, populism and authoritarianism, unites their intersections within the framework of a discursively constructed far-right populist ideology, and traces how this ideology challenges the traditional script of liberal democracy.
Wodak’s rich and detailed descriptions of right-wing populist rhetoric and identification of its key tropes, continuities, frames, strategies, and topoi make this book indispensable for any discourse-based approach to the topic. It is certainly possible to theorise the current conjuncture differently, but the depth of her engagement with far-right politicians and their utterances across national contexts and time frames is profoundly valuable.
Wodak’s work focuses on the ‘micro-politics’ of the far-right and ‘how they actually produce and reproduce their ideologies and exclusionary agenda in everyday politics, in the (social) media, in campaigning, in posters, slogans and speeches’. Wodak convincingly argues that all far-right parties construct scapegoats out of racialized people which ‘manifests as a politics of fear’… This approach integrates very well with the ideational approach to populism and recognises the performative and ideational dimensions of the populist far-right.
Wodak’s rich and detailed descriptions of right-wing populist rhetoric and identification of its key tropes, continuities, frames, strategies, and topoi make this book indispensable for any discourse-based approach to the topic...the depth of her engagement with far-right politicians and their utterances across national contexts and time frames is profoundly valuable.
I cannot recall any other book from the field of discourse analysis that appealed as much to me in its style.
The second edition of Politics of Fear is highly recommended for scholars and citizens looking to understand the micro-politics of the contemporary far-right and the processes that have brought them to the mainstream
Wodak’s second edition of The Politics of Fear could not have come at a better time.
With the second edition of The Politics of Fear, Wodak compellingly demonstrates the ideological foundations of far-right populism rooted in anti-genderism, racism, antisemitism and (ethno) nationalism.
Professor Wodak... uses her experience in both fields to reflect on the normalization
of far-right discourses, drawing particular attention to the threats posed by it to
liberal democracies. Although this type of discussion may naturally draw the attention of political
scientists, the language found in the book is accessible to the wider public, providing a
timely snapshot of contemporary far-right to both scholars and the wider public.
All of her claims and theses are very clearly elaborated and then backed with rich, recent empirical evidence, including not only quotes from a vast variety of literary genres but also visual sources like posters, photographs, media screenshots, and cartoons. All this is supported by a typography and layout that make it extremely easy to follow the line of argumentation and the use of detailed examples. I cannot recall any other book from the field of discourse analysis that appealed as much to me in its style.
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