Fascism and the Far Right in Europe


Across Europe and beyond, parties on the far right have become a substantial force in contemporary politics. Some analysts have raised questions about these parties' ties to fascism, as characterized regimes such as Mussolini's Italy, Franco's Spain, and Hitler's Germany. How do today's far right actors compare to those of the past, and what can we learn from the comparison of the present moment to history? In this class, we will study both the extreme and radical right in Europe over time through the lens of three cases: Italy, Spain, and Germany. We will analyze both the conditions for popular support (demand) and political opportunity structures (supply) that allow(ed) far right actors to gain and maintain authority. We will also assess the strategies of these actors through themes of race and migration, security and foreign policy, gender, and religion. As we develop this discussion, you will conduct further research into a single topic that interests you, in the course cases or another case of your choice. Since an essential element of far right politics is the rejection of either the liberal elements of democracy (e.g. minority rights) or the principles of democracy entirely (including the electoral process), you will present your research through a creative medium aimed at a public audience, with the goal of promoting civic engagement. Prereq: Introduction to Comparative Politics OR Introduction to International Politics
Course Attributes: EN S; AS SSC

Section 01

Fascism and the Far Right in Europe
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