Edited By Florian Bieber, Magdalena Solska and Dane Taleski
15. Different Faces of Illiberal Party Politics in Central and Eastern Europe (Vlastimil Havlík / Věra Stojarová)
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Vlastimil Havlík and Věra Stojarová
15. Different Faces of Illiberal Party Politics in Central and Eastern Europe1
This chapter provides a comparative overview of different variants of illiberal politics focusing on political parties in the Visegrad countries since 2000. It discusses the relevant populist, populist radical right and extremist parties. It also addresses the mainstreaming of nationalism and xenophobia and the subsequent polarization of Central European societies.
Keywords: Visegrad countries, populism, radical right populism, extremism, Slovakia, Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary
Illiberalism has again been haunting Europe. It is not only the case of the old EU members where illiberal tendencies are observable, but also the Visegrad countries after celebrating twenty years of democracy in the region. Populism and illiberal tendencies were also present in Visegrad politics in the 1990s but were limited to marginal parties or those that played only a temporary role in national politics. After the turn of the millennium, antiestablishment political populism entered the political mainstream and Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries have no longer been labelled as top pupils or front runners but rather as ungrateful students who repay solidarity with self-centredness and pure egoism. Obviously, we cannot describe all of the countries as illiberal; there are many shades of grey and variations and the illiberalism takes many shapes and patterns. ← 313 | 314 → Most attention has been directed recently towards Poland and Hungary as examples of countries where...
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