Notes on Populism

Vinicio Busacchi


The series of notes gathered in this paper mirrors the complexity of populism: from the tendency to have a negative use of the concept to its semantic and rhetoric-communicative vagueness; from an undetermined historical-theoretical integration of the concept to a theoretical-practical, cultural and ideological differentiation (which invites us to discuss ‘populisms’ instead of ‘populism’); from the problem of the classification of different forms of populism to the study of new expressions of it (which, prevalently, is an effect of the vast circulation and use of new social technologies); and from the opportunity to deepen fundamental mechanisms that are the bases in formation of the populist representational discourse, movement and active response to the necessity of a wide interdisciplinary work of research. By sketching hypothesis, collecting questions and indicating problematic cruxes, this paper tries to discuss the possible contribution of philosophy (which is prevalently identified with critical hermeneutics), and the ideal interdisciplinary set-up (which is essentially defined considering a possible connection between social psychology, sociology, political science, philosophy, communication theory and new media). 

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