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Variants of Populism: Political Polarization in the Age of Globalization – September 11
The recent rise of populism on a global scale has called into question the quality of contemporary democracy. This phenomenon entails the rise of both right-wing and left-wing variants. Drawing on comparative examples, this presentation will explain these variants in terms of the widespread imposition of austerity policies associated with financial globalization.
William Munro, Endowed Professor of Political Science and Director of Environmental Studies Program, IWU
From Democracy to Dictatorship: Germany 1930-1936 – September 13
In the Reichstag elections of June 1932, 52% of the votes went to “totalitarian” parties. Six months later, Adolf Hitler was appointed chancellor, and the National Socialist German Workers Party began to remake state and society. How did that happen? How was Weimar Germany turned into a one-party-state?
Katrin Paehler, Associate Professor, Department of History, ISU
A Tropical Mussolini? Brazilian Populism, Now and Then – September 18
In 2018 Jair Bolsonaro was elected President of Brazil. Bolsonaro is a right-wing extremist with openly racist, homophobic, and misogynist views who recalls the military dictatorship (1964-1985) as “the good old days.” This talk will provide historical context for his electoral triumph.
Michael Weis, Professor, Department of History, IWU
Britain’s Populist Moment: Brexit and the Future of the United Kingdom –
The 2016 decision of British voters to leave the European Union unleashed sweeping and disruptive currents of change. Led by the polarizing figure of Nigel Farage, this movement has upended the political system and shattered long established political allegiances. It also raises urgent questions about the viability of one of Europe’s oldest states.
Richard Soderlund, Assistant Professor, Department of History, ISU