Populist right-wing politics is moving centre-stage, with some parties reaching the very top of the electoral ladder: but do we know why, and why now? In this book Ruth Wodak traces the trajectories of such parties from the margins of the political landscape to its centre, to understand and explain how they are transforming from fringe voices to persuasive political actors who set the agenda and frame media debates. Laying bare the normalization of nationalistic, xenophobic, racist and antisemitic rhetoric, she builds a new framework for this ‘politics of fear’ that is entrenching new social divides of nation, gender and body. The result reveals the micro-politics of right-wing populism: how discourses, genres, images and texts are performed and manipulated in both formal and also everyday contexts with profound consequences. This book is a must-read for scholars and students of linguistics, media and politics wishing to understand these dynamics that are re-shaping our political space.

Language and Identity: The Politics of Nationalism

Language and Identity: The Politics of Nationalism

Language and Identity: The Politics of Nationalism

‘[People who are] unable to speak English as those living here or not really wanting or even willing to integrate […] have created a kind of discomfort and disjointedness in some neighbourhoods.’

David Cameron (Speech on Immigration, 14 April 2011)1

(Re)inventing Nationalism

Nationalism, once declared an obsolete force, especially after World War II and the establishment of the EU, has obviously returned with renewed vigour. Nationalism nowadays must be perceived as a global phenomenon – we encounter passionate nationalist movements everywhere, in Africa, South-America, the Middle East, Southern Europe, and in the successor states of the former Soviet Union. Frequently, new nationalisms emerge, ...

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