ABSTRACT

This introduction presents an overview of key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book focuses on three Italian and Swiss populist parties: the Lega Nord (LN), Popolo della Liberta (PDL), and Schweizerische Volkspartei (SVP) during periods when they were in power. It provides the most comprehensive study to date of populists in power. It provides the most comprehensive study to date of populists in power, from analytical and methodological scope. The book broadly examines right-wing parties, and shows how people define right-wing populism. People consider populism to be an ideology, with an increasing trend in the literature. The book shows some key points of the received wisdom on populists which Cas Mudde refers to need to be re-thought: as regards their party organizations, as regards their endurance, and as regards the views and expectations of their party members.