From Radical Right to Neo-Nationalist

Eger, Maureen A., and Sarah Valdez. 2019. “From radical right to neo-nationalist.” European Political Science 18(3): 379–399. 

In this article, we investigate the ideology of the populist radical right (PRR) and the extent to which its political message has changed over time. In doing so, we also judge the usefulness of the PRR-tag. Like seminal scholarship on these parties, we contend that both economic and social positions are relevant for contemporary radical right parties. Further, we argue that contemporary parties’ stances are indicative of a nationalist ideology. Using the Manifesto Project Dataset, we investigate radical right policy preferences between 1970 and 2015. Results indicate that right-wing economic stances are more prevalent prior to the twenty-first century and that radical right parties increasingly make economically leftist claims. Results also demonstrate that radical right parties are not always the farthest to right in national political spaces. Further, we show that contemporary parties make nationalist claims. Indeed, nationalism not only increasingly characterizes these parties but also increasingly distinguishes them from other major party families, whose average positions over time are globalist. We argue that contemporary radical right parties are better conceptualized and described as neo-nationalist, a label consistent with both their social and economic positions.

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