Challenges to Consensual Politics: Democracy, Identity, and Populist Protest in the Alpine Region
The book analyses the transnational Alpine region where historical, social, and geo-economic specificities have led to a distinctive type of democracy and identity. Differentialist identities, multi-level consociational accommodation, and corporatist intermediation are typical features of this region's «consensual politics», and the process of European integration adds further to this complexity. These forms of consensual politics are challenged today by large and persistent populist parties that express strong anti-elitist sentiments, local identities, and Euro-sceptic attitudes.
The book examines the defensive reaction of populist parties to the perceived threats of open borders (multi-culturalism and cheap labour) and elite negotiations (at all levels of governance). Protest attitudes translate into alternative views of European integration favouring proposals for an anti-assimilationist and labour protective «Fortress», as well as a religiously-based «Europe of the People». The book considers the possibility of a potential cleavage in the incipient European party system through alliances of «losers of integration» cutting across the left-right alignment and overlapping with ethno-linguistic, centre-periphery, religious, and rural-urban factors that survived in the Alpine region more than elsewhere.
An empirical analysis by a group of international experts focuses on the Alpine areas of Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Slovenia, and Switzerland in which parties like FPÖ, CSU, Lega Nord, and Schweizerische Volkspartei have recently become crucial actors.
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Preface and Acknowledgements
Consensus and European Integration
Populism as the Other Side
The Alpine Political
Leadership Ideology and AntiEuropean
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Alleanza Nazionale Alpine Alpine area Alpine political culture Alpine region Alps attitudes Austria autonomy Bavarian Betz Bossi canton Caramani centralised centre challenge chapter characterised cleavage constellation coalition consensual consensual democracy consociational consociationalism contrast countries democracy democratic dimension discourse Domenico Comino economic elections electoral elements elites emergence ethnic Euro-scepticism Europe European integration European level federal FPO's French German Haider Heimat identity ideological immigration institutional Italian Italy leader left-right Lega dei Ticinesi Lega Nord Ligue Savoisienne linguistic linked Mintzel mobilisation modernisation movements nation-state Nord's Northern opposition organisations Padania party system political parties political system populism populist parties programme protest religious represented right-wing populist parties role Savoy Schweizerische Volkspartei Siidtiroler Volkspartei social South Tyrol South Tyrolean specific strong structure Sudtiroler supranational Swiss Switzerland territorial themes threat Ticino tion tional traditional transnational region Umberto Bossi Vlaams Blok vote voters