C-REX chairs ECPR Section on Right-Wing Extremism Beyond Party Politics

Professor Tore Bjørgo, C-REX UiO, and professor Michael Minkenberg chairs a section on Right-Wing Extremism Beyond Party Politics, in the forthcoming ECPR Conference in Oslo, 6-9 September 2017.

Section Chair: Tore Bjørgo, University of Oslo.
Co-chair: Michael Minkenberg, Europa-Universität Viadrina


Call for Panels (with Papers) and individual Papers

Deadline 15 February 2017 (midnight GMT).

The next stage of the process is open to anyone wishing to propose a complete Panel with Papers, and those wanting to propose individual Papers to a particular Section. Panels that have been provisionally proposed as part of accepted Sections must also be submitted through this procedure. Panels should include 4-5 Papers. There are no rules requiring proposers of Panels to belong to an ECPR member institution, but they must hold a MyECPR account.

Abstract of the Section:

Right-wing extremism (RWE) has yet again emerged as a significant threat to liberal democracies, social cohesion, minorities and political opponents. Thus far, the political science literature on this topic has primarily focused on parties and electoral behavior. Numerous studies have interpreted the ideology of extreme right parties, analyzed how they organize, and perhaps most extensively, explained why certain voters support these parties. However, RWE also exists outside of party politics and the electoral arena – mainly in the form of violence, vigilantism, street activism, hatred online and everyday prejudices. This development should encourage political scientists to move beyond the standard institutional approach to RWE in which parties and voters are the main foci of interest.

This Section will analyze the nature, strength and impact of RWE outside of formal party politics in postindustrial societies. Who are the main actors in (un)civil society – offline as well as online, violent as well as non-violent, single intellectuals as well as organized social movements – pushing (parts of) the extreme right agenda? What kind of economic, cultural and/or political factors explain their success or failure? What determines their impact? Existing research suggests that some of the key questions relates to (1) the role of ideology, (2) degree of organization and (3) patterns of mainstream reactions. Firstly, how important is ideology for right-wing terrorists, vigilante groups or online users expressing hatred towards immigrants and/or minorities? Secondly, to what extent should RWE violence, vigilantism and hatred online be interpreted and explained as organized activities? And finally, how can we make sense of the varieties of mainstream reaction that we observe across Europe with regards to RWE violence, vigilantism and hate speech?

Call for Panels and Papers

The Section combines different conceptual, theoretical, methodological and empirical approaches analyzing RWE outside of party politics and the electoral arena. It welcomes Panels and Papers that explore these ideas – the role of ideology, degree of organization and patterns of mainstream reactions with regard to RWE beyond party politics – either through a single case study, comparative research, survey data and/or experimental design. Panels and papers may focus on European countries or include other relevant cases.

Right-Wing Terrorism and Violence in Post-WWII Europe

Chair: Leena Malkki, University of Helsinki

Since 1945 the threat posed by right-wing terrorism and violence (RTV) has varied considerably over time and between countries in Europe. Existing research suggests that RTV comes in waves, and that the last wave began somewhere around the late 1980s and ended during the early 2000s in most countries. Following a relatively peaceful period, several experts now argue that a new outbreak of RTV is brewing in Europe. Both comparative and case studies are encouraged to shed new light on the conditions under which RTV is most and least likely to occur.

Vigilantism Against Migrants and Minorities

Chair: Miroslav Mareš (Masaryk University)

One of the fundamental principles constituting a state is that it has the monopoly of the legitimate use of violence. Vigilante groups are challenging this principle, maintaining that the police are either unable or unwilling to fulfill its tasks, or that it is lacking the legitimacy to do so. Rightwing vigilantism have increased in Europe due to the recent influx of refugees to Europe and high-profiled cases of sexual abuse. These new vigilante groups appear to have rather different profiles in different European countries and achieve very different levels of acceptance and legitimacy. This Panel will explore this variation and why these movements differ.

Local and Global Islamophobias

Chair: Torkel Brekke (Peace Research Institute Oslo)

Islamophobic discourse is global but it takes on a variety of local expressions across different cultural contexts. Hatred and fear of Muslims and their cultures focus on different local symbols and narratives according to time and place, but there are also common themes. This Panel asks how local and global expressions of islamophobia relate to each other. Papers will look at mediation and translation between local and global discourses. In particular, we are interested analyzing how key local entrepreneurs or mediators – individuals, groups, organizations - connect local and global islamophobic discourses across various media.

Pathways to Inclusion of Muslims in Contemporary Europe

Chair: Paul Snider (Stanford University)

Research and public discussion on the place of Muslim immigrants in Western Europe have focused on hostility to Muslims, the surge of RWE, and the depth of populism and nativism. The premise of this panel, however, is that there also is an urgent need for consideration of the possible strengths of democracy. We therefore invite papers that examine pathways to Muslim inclusion in contemporary Europe. More specifically, we ask to what extent, and under what conditions, are national majorities willing to accommodate Muslims? We welcome in particular papers that address this question using novel empirical evidence, including but not limited to new survey evidence and survey experiments.

Hatred and Activism on the Internet

Chair: Eugenia Siapera (Dublin City University)

The internet has been at the forefront of the rise of a culture of hate, offering renewed impetus for racist, far right and neo-fascist groups to organize and socialize their views. At the same time, the internet has allowed the circulation of xenophobia, and racism which emanate from random sources and which are exchanged as part of everyday online life posing important challenges, both conceptual/theoretical and methodological. The Panel invites contributions that address theoretical, methodological, discursive, regulatory, policy-related aspects of organized and disorganized online hate.

Dr. Bjørgo is professor and director of the new Center for Research on Extremism: The Extreme Right, Hate Crime and Political Violence (C-REX) at University of Oslo. He has published extensively on RWE, hate crime, terrorism, gangs, policing and crime prevention since the late 1980s.

Dr. Minkenberg is professor of political science at European University Viadrina. He has published extensively on topics such as the radical right in liberal democracies; immigration, nationalism and the politics of citizenship; and the relationship between religion and politics in Western societies.

Published Dec. 2, 2016 11:36 AM - Last modified Mar. 28, 2019 1:15 PM