Populism, Party Politics and the Economic Crisis in Greece: a Comparison with the case of Portugal

Sotiropoulos, Dimitri A. (2021) Populism, Party Politics and the Economic Crisis in Greece: a Comparison with the case of Portugal. In: Greece and the Euro: from crisis to recovery. Hellenic Observatory, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK., https://www.lse.ac.uk/Hellenic-Observatory/Publications/Staff-Books-and-Publications, pp. 252-282.

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Abstract

Among all South European countries, Greece underwent the most severe economic crisis in the 2010s which gave rise to dormant populist reactions, which combined with diffuse political discourse and the political party system. In contrast to the comparable case of Portugal, populism in Greece was reflected in the emergence or strengthening of populist parties on the Left and the Right, the adoption of populism as political discourse by an otherwise radical left-wing party (Syriza), and its rise to power in 2015 on the wave of social reactions to austerity policies. Populism was also manifested in the adoption of populist governing policies during Syriza’s government rule, in coalition with the nationalist right-wing Anel party, in 2015-2019. The spread of populism and its rise to power in Greece are analyzed in the light of the opposite experience of Portugal and are attributed to following causes: legacies of democratic practice after the 1974 transition to democracy, traditions of political culture and the polarization of the party system, in addition to the gravity and long duration of the recent economic crisis which was a catalyst for the sea change in Greek politics in 2011-2019.

Item Type: Book Section
Title in English: Populism, Party Politics and the Economic Crisis in Greece: a Comparison with the case of Portugal
Additional information: This chapter was first presented in different iterations as a paper in a conference organized at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy on Greece and a conference on populism in Southern Europe at Georgetown University in April 2019. The author would like to thank George Alogoskoufis, Kevin Featherstone and Nuno Severiano Texeira for their kind invitations to the above conferences; and Sebastian Royo and Jorge M. Fernandes for criticisms. He also acknowledges the financial support of the Onassis Foundation USA (New York), the S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation (Athens), the Foundation for Education and European Culture (IPEP, Athens) and the Bank of Greece. The chapter is part of the author’s participation in the project “Democratic Efficiency and Varieties of Populism in Europe” (the DEMOS research project), funded by the European Commission, Horizon 2020 grant agreement No 822590.
Keywords: political parties, populism, economic crisis, Greece, Portugal, comparative analysis, populist policy making, governance, trust, polarisation
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HG Finance
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Divisions: Institute for Political Science
Research funder: European Union, Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Action DEMOS grant no. 822590
Depositing User: Enikő Meiszterics
Date Deposited: 15 Jul 2021 09:20
Last Modified: 07 Sep 2021 13:28
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URI: https://openarchive.tk.mta.hu/id/eprint/480

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