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Anti-populism, Meritocracy, and (Technocratic) Elitism.

Voutyras, S., 2024. Anti-populism, Meritocracy, and (Technocratic) Elitism. In: Stavrakakis, Y. and Katsambekis, G., eds. Elgar Research Handbook on Populism. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.

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DOI: 10.4337/9781800379695


Populism is typically accused of fuelling political polarisation. Yet, while the populist side of this polarisation has been at the centre of populism scholarship, the other side – the anti-populist camp – has been largely ignored. This chapter argues that studying anti-populism is essential for making fuller sense of populism, since the two are entangled in a type of dialectical relation. Anti-populism is understood as a distinct political discourse aimed at delegitimising challenges to the status quo, and has become a prominent feature of the rhetoric of western political and media elites, i.e., the traditional liberal centre. The chapter focuses on and critically discusses two core normative and ideological features of anti-populism, namely meritocracy and technocracy. Both principles underpin the distinction and growing disparities between elites and ‘the rest’; meritocracy by producing a hierarchy of worth, and technocracy by justifying the narrowing down of political participation by ordinary citizens.

Item Type:Book Section
Series Name:Research Handbooks in Political Thought
Additional Information:This is a draft chapter/article. The final version is available in Elgar Research Handbook on Populism, edited by Yannis Stavrakakis and Giorgos Katsambekis, published in 2024, Edward Elgar Publishing Ltd The material cannot be used for any other purpose without further permission of the publisher, and is for private use only.
Uncontrolled Keywords:anti-populism; meritocracy; technocratic rule; elitism
Group:Faculty of Media & Communication
ID Code:38987
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:20 Dec 2023 13:53
Last Modified:05 Jun 2024 07:33


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