What is the difference between Jean-Marie Le Pen’s National Front and Donald Trump’s election as U.S. president? Why should we understand Trump as part of a dangerous “fourth wave” of radical right politicians? Dr. Cas Mudde’s new book The Far Right Today (Polity, 2019) argues that politicians like Le Pen represented a 20th-century marginalized populist radical right party but Trump (and others across the globe) represent a fourth wave in which the 21st-century radical right parties are normalized and mainstreamed all over the world such that three of the world’s largest democracies (India, the United States, and Brazil) have or have had radical right leaders. It is this normalization that Mudde identifies as crucial to our understanding of the radical right around the globe – and any possible responses available from liberal democracies.
Cas Mudde is the Stanley Wade Shelton UGAF Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Georgia and a Professor II in the Center for Research on Extremism (C-REX) at the University of Oslo. Mudde has written numerous scholarly books published in 23 languages (many of which focus on extremism and populism) and regularly publishes in popular outlets such as The Guardian. He hosts Radikaal, a podcast about the radical aspects politics, music, and sports.
Susan Liebell is an associate professor of political science at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. Why Diehard Originalists Aren’t Really Originalists recently appeared in the Washington Post’s Monkey Cage and “Retreat from the Rule of Law: Locke and the Perils of Stand Your Ground” was published in the Journal of Politics (July 2020). Email her comments at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet to @SusanLiebell.
Susan Liebell is associate professor of political science at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia.