Illiberal Politics and Religion in Europe and Beyond

Concepts, Actors, and Identity Narratives

Diese Publikation zitieren

Mirjam Weiberg-Salzmann(Hg.), Anja Hennig(Hg.), Illiberal Politics and Religion in Europe and Beyond (2020), Campus Frankfurt / New York, 60486 Frankfurt/Main, ISBN: 9783593443140

Getrackt seit 05/2018



Anja Hennig, Dr. phil., ist wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin am Lehrstuhl für Vergleichende Politikwissenschaft der Universität Frankfurt (Oder). Mirjam Weiberg-Salzmann, Dr. phil., ist Senior Research Fellow am Exzellenzcluster »Religion und Politik« der Universität Münster.

Beschreibung / Abstract

Globale Migrationsbewegungen, Sicherheitsbedrohungen und soziale Umwälzungen haben in den vergangenen Jahren den Aufstieg populistischer rechter Parteien und Bewegungen in Europa und im transatlantischen Raum befördert. Religiöse Akteure stellen potenzielle Allianzpartner für diese Gruppierungen dar. Denn religiöse Interpretationen, etwa die Bezugnahme auf christliche Traditionen, bieten ein Reservoir für die Konstruktion vermeintlich natürlicher Geschlechterordnungen, exkludierender Vorstellungen homogener Nationen und anti-muslimischer Narrative. Dieses Buch analysiert die ideologische, strukturelle und historische Verbindung von Religion und illiberalen Politiken in europäischen Demokratien.


»Religion has become a most important factor in current political debates and is instrumentalized in various ways globally and glocally, in different countries, always dependent on socio-political interests and historical trajectories. The contributions in this volume illustrate in much detail, how different religious beliefs are mobilized in exclusionary and far-right populist rhetoric and practices. Understanding the impact of these developments allows understanding salient discursive shifts in respect to the normalization of illiberalism. This book is a must-read for scholars, students, and laypeople alike.« Ruth Wodak, Em. Professor Dr DDr h.c. Ruth Wodak, FAcSS, Distinguished Professor and Chair in Discourse Studies, Lancaster University/University Vienna, 2020

»This comprehensive and original book puts a new light on the historically tense relations between religions and liberal values; it shows how religion, in a time of decreasing religious practices, finds a new life through populist and nationalist narratives. A very well needed conceptual approach to the rise of illiberal politics, based on in depth case studies.« Olivier Roy, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies European University Institute, 2020

»The relationship of religion to illiberal politics, especially right-wing populism in both the USA and Europe, is a key topic of political and sociological controversy. This book is detailed, comprehensive and thought-provoking. It identifies common factors, especially anti-Islam and the rise of white supremacy linked to Christianity, as key factors in such expressions of right-wing populism. It is a must-read for anyone interested in one of the most significant political developments in recent years.« Jeff Haynes, Emeritus professor, London Metropolitan University, 2020

»Practitioners and scholars have reflected on the interaction between religious and political actors and the potential risk this poses for liberal democracies. These conclusions are mostly based upon speculation. Conversely, with this fascinating book the authors offer a very coherent look on such a fluid subject, as well as conduct a careful empirical examination of a large number of actors in various countries. The book fills major gaps and offers important lessons for both policy makers and academics.« Manuela Caiani, Scuola Normale Superiore, Florence, Italy, 2020


  • Inhalt
  • Preface
  • I. Concepts and Theory
  • Introduction: Liberal Democracies under Assault
  • The Ambivalences of Democracy: Religion and Illiberal Politics
  • Religion as a Paradigm of Authority, Hierarchy and (In)Equality†”On Conceptualizing Linkages between Religious Patterns of Thought and Illiberal Politics in Modern Democracy
  • Uniting Through Opposition: The Chains of Equivalence Politics of the Populist Right and Its Use of Religion
  • II. Christian Identity Narratives and Anti-Muslim Politics
  • Hijacking Religion for the Sake of the Nation: Illiberal Democracy in Hungary
  • Between Catholic traditionalism and Laà¯cité: The religious dimension in thought and action of the Front National in France
  • The Religious Dimensions of the Spanish Radical Right: Voters, Ideology and Communication of Vox
  • Turning away from tolerance: Religion and illiberal politics in Austria
  • (Il-)liberal Public Policies on Islam in Switzerland: The Handshake Affair in Public Discourse and State Religious Policy
  • III. Christian Identity Narratives and Nationalisms
  • Hussitism and Illiberal Politics in the Czech Republic: A Historical Religious Legacy in Dispute
  • Orthodoxy as Exclusivist Identity in the Greek Radical Right: Discourse Analysis and Electoral Behavior
  • A Catholic Far-Right Party in Italy? How the Lega Nord Rediscovered Catholicism and Anti-Gender Politics
  • Instrumentalizing Religious Symbols: Anti-Liberal Narratives in the US and Brazil
  • IV. (Il)liberal Christian Actors and Public Policies
  • Political Genderphobia in Germany: How Opposition to Gender-sensitive Education Reforms Unites Political and Religious Right-wing Actors
  • The Christian Orthodox Church and Illiberal Politics in Romania
  • Illiberal Migration Politics and the Divided Catholic Church in Poland since 2015
  • (Il)liberal Intervention? Religion and Moral Politics in Western Europe and the United States of America
  • V. Perspectives
  • Religion and (Il)liberal Politics. Interview of the editors with Michael Minkenberg, European University Viadrina, Comparative Politics, Frankfurt (Oder), 1/10/2020
  • Conclusion: Religion and Illiberal Politics: Patterns of an Ambivalent Relationship
  • Authors

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