The Missing Definition

By Blaise Rego

The article by Catherine Fieschi defines three types of populist from the most salient “the strictly populists”, these populists use dog whistle words to spark xenophobia without being overt in their othering of groups. The other side of her definitions were “the democratic activists”, they are populists who focus their emotions towards a particular law or political figure.

I feel though that she has missed a new type of populist that is more dingoes politically and socially than any of the other groups. I would call this group “the quiet part loud”, these populist forgo social and political norms and quite simply say the quiet part out loud on most things. This has been clearly seen with two recent political lighting rods, Donald Trump and Jair Bolsonaro. Donald Trump is a particularly important example of this group as he maybe be the original member. During his 2016 presidential campaign Trump’s openly racist vitriol endeared him to constituents who say him as a man who would say what they were thinking. His statements about immigrants from Latin America, demonizing them and demanding that they stop coming to the USA galvanized a part of the population that had felt othered.

I believe that to define this group it would look something like this; this group are figures that play on openly racist or xenophobic tropes or ideas to grow their base. Not only do they other an ethnic/ ideological group but they also other their opponents. These figures state that their opponents are willfully killing their nation and that the leader is the only way to save the state.

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