chapter  6
Anti-elitism as a populist strategy of defending ‘the people’
ByEvelina Staykova, Ildiko Otova, Vanya Ivanova
Pages 19

This chapter aims to analyse one manifestation of this trend, namely anti-elitism, as one of the main characteristics of populism, referring to the empirical results gathered within the e-EAV project. In fact anti-elitism appeared to be the second strongest feature of the populist discourse captured by the research carried out within the project. The analyses of anti-elitism presented in this chapter rely on the multi-methodological approach of the project. Anti-elitism, on the other hand, cannot be examined purely theoretically outside populism. The popular elite antagonism plays an ideational rather than structural role in defining populism: it forms a key element of a distinct interpretation of the political. On the one hand, we can explain this with the characteristics and the specifics of the political and public scene of the European Union. The elite are often examined as a channel of other threats globalism, monetarism or even European policy.