This article seeks to explain the endurance of populist parties in power by focusing on the case of Turkey and the Justice and Development Party (AKP). The existing scholarly research on the AKP’s populism either focuses on the discourse and mediagenic performance of Erdoğan constructing an antagonism between ‘the people’ and ‘elites’ or equates populism with patronage politics. This study argues that in order to understand the AKP’s long-term appeal, populism should be theoretically decoupled from narrow approaches related to economic governance and treated as an essentially anti-pluralist set of ideas in a problematic relationship to democracy. Empirically, this article examines the government-dependent trade unions and women’s organizations in Turkey to understand how ruling populists shape extra-legislative fields. The findings show that the AKP expands the reach of populist antagonism between the people versus the elites through these organizations. Dependent organizations serve to reassert the AKP’s continuing relevance as the only genuine representative of ‘the people’, while transforming the labour and women’s struggle in line with the government’s agenda. They also keep newly arising social demands in check under democratic disguise while denying pluralism to civil society and entrenching undemocratic governance.
|Data di pubblicazione:||2016|
|Titolo:||Populism as the problem child of democracy: the AKP’s enduring appeal and the use of meso-level actors|
|Rivista:||JOURNAL OF SOUTHEAST EUROPEAN & BLACK SEA STUDIES|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14683857.2016.1242204|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||2.1 Articolo su rivista |