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Join us for a presentation of the ways in which contemporary far-right politicians, intellectuals, and pundits use and abuse traditional liberal concepts and ideas to justify positions that threaten democratic institutions and liberal principles. This edited volume, Far-Right Newspeak and the Future of Liberal Democracy (A. James McAdams and Samuel Piccolo eds.) explores cases of both far-right and right-wing thought in eastern and western Europe, the United States, and Canada. Subjects include well-known figures, such as Marine Le Pen, Tucker Carlson, Peter Thiel, Nick Griffin, Thierry Baudet, Jordan Peterson, Russell Brand, and Viktor Orbán, and lesser-known names, such as the Czech politician Tomio Okamura and the Internet personality "Raw Egg Nationalist." The contributors examine these figures’ claims about hot-button issues, including immigration, Islam, race, Covid-19 policies, feminism, monetary policy, and free speech. The book demonstrates that mainstream politicians and intellectuals are at risk of losing control over the definitions of the very concepts, including equal rights, racial and ethnic diversity, and political tolerance, that undergird their vision of liberal democracy.

Speakers

 

A. James McAdams is the William M. Scholl Professor of International Affairs at the University of Notre Dame. For 16 years, he was Director of the Nanovic Institute for European Studies. He has also served as chair of the Political Science department. McAdams has written widely on European affairs, especially on central Europe, as well as global communism. His books include East Germany and Detente; Germany Divided; Judging the Past in Unified Germany; and The Crisis of Modern Times. His book, Far-Right Newspeak and the Future of Liberal Democracy (Routledge 2024), is the first systematic, multicountry exploration of far-right Newspeak. He has recently published two collections: 1968: Cultural Revolutions in Europe and Latin America (with Anthony Monta) and Contemporary Far-Right Thinkers and the Future of Liberal Democracy (with Alejandro Castrillon).

 

Samuel Piccolo is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Gustavus Adolphus College. His peer-reviewed work has been published in venues including American Journal of Political Science, Journal of Politics, American Political Thought, European Journal of Political Theory, and Security Studies. He is also the co-editor (with A. James McAdams) of the volume Far-Right Newspeak and the Future of Liberal Democracy. He is from Ridgeville, Ontario, Canada, and was formerly on staff at the Voice of Pelham, where he wrote news, features, and personal essays. In 2019, he received the Dalton Camp Award, a prize given by Friends of Canadian Broadcasting for the best essay on media and democracy. In 2020/21, he was an editorial assistant at the Review of Politics. He is a contributor at West.SB, a site about South Bend, even though he now lives in Minneapolis.

 

Laura Field is a writer and political theorist in Washington, DC. She has worked extensively on the right-wing (“New Right”) intellectuals who rose to prominence under the Trump administration and is currently writing a book on the subject for Princeton University Press.

 

Sarah Shurts is Professor of History at Bergen Community College. She is the author of Resentment and the Right: French Intellectual Identity Reimagined, 1898-2000 (2017), chapters in Contemporary Far Right Thinkers and the Future of Democracy (2022) and Far-Right Newspeak and the Future of Liberal Democracy (2024), and articles in Historical Reflections/Réflexions Historiques, European History Quarterly, French Politics, Culture & Society, the Journal of Modern European History and the Journal of the History of Ideas. She has contributed chapters to several history resource collections, written a two volume Western Civilizations resource collection for Oxford University Press called History in Practice (2024), and is currently writing Facts and Fictions of the French Revolution (under contract Bloomsbury/ABC-Clio).

 

Moderator

 

Marlene Laruelle is a Research Professor of International Affairs and Political Science at the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies (IERES), and Director of the Illiberalism Studies Program.

 

Event Details

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Topic: Far-Right Newspeak and the Future of Liberal Democracy
Time: May 3, 2024 03:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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