Thrown around with abandon? Popular understandings of populism as conveyed by the print media: a UK case study

Bale, Tim, van Kessel, Stijn and Taggart, Paul (2011) Thrown around with abandon? Popular understandings of populism as conveyed by the print media: a UK case study. Acta Politica, 46 (2). pp. 111-131. ISSN 0001-6810

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Abstract

This article examines the use of the term 'populism' in the UK print media and compares this with the scholarly usage. It assesses whether there is truth in the claim that the media uses the term too freely and imprecisely. Our finding indicate that populism is used for a wide range of seemingly unrelated actors across the world, that it is hard to find any logic in the set of policies that are associated with the term, and that populism is, more or less explicitly, regularly used in a pejorative way. Despite these findings, we refrain from labelling populism a useless term. We will, however, indicate that the inconsistent vernacular use of the term complicates a meaningful academic debate about the concept.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: populism; media; United Kingdom
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Politics
Depositing User: Tim Bale
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 20:19
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2012 14:28
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/25473
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