1st Edition

German Perspectives on Right-Wing Extremism Challenges for Comparative Analysis

Edited By Johannes Kiess, Oliver Decker, Elmar Brähler Copyright 2016
    176 Pages
    by Routledge

    176 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book discusses right-wing extremism by analysing Germanophone research on this topic for the first time in English, including unique survey data from Germany and Austria. Highlighting how questions of terminology can become complicated when country cases are compared, the authors analyse theoretical and methodological issues in relation to the question of right-wing extremism. In Anglo-American academia, the term is often associated with fairly rare phenomena in the form of extremist political groups, whereas in Germany the term is often applied to a wide range of attitudes, behaviours and parties, including those which operate more within the mainstream political sphere.

    Covering an array of sub-fields such as right-wing terrorism, iconography of the extreme right and the Germanophone discussion on the differentiation of right-wing populism and right-wing extremism, the authors account not only for the centrality of right-wing extremist attitudes in Germanophone research, but also point at its often overlooked relevance for the phenomenon in general. Offering an important insight into the nuanced definition of right-wing extremism across Europe and enhancing both international debate and cross-country comparative research, this book will be of interest to students and scholars researching extremism, German politics and European politics more generally.

    Introduction: German Perspectives on Right-Wing Extremism: Challenges for Comparative Analysis

    Part I: Methodological Challenges and Innovations for Comparative Research

    1. Comparing Right-Wing Extremist Attitudes – Lack of Research or Lack of Theory?

    2. Attitude and Agency: Common Roots, Divergent Methodologies, Joint Ventures?

    3. National Identity and Immigration in the Concepts of Right-Wing Extremism and Societal Security 

    4.  A Multi-Method Approach to the Comparative Analysis of Anti-Pluralistic Politics

    Part II: Comparing Right-Wing Extremism: Exemplary Case Studies

    5.  "Fertile Soil for Ideological Confusion"? The Extremism of the Centre 

    6. Fear of Social Decline and Treading on Those Below? The Role of Social Crises and Insecurities in the Emergence and the Reception of Prejudices in Austria

    7. Terrorism Made in Germany: the Case of the NSU 

    8. Extremist or Populist? Proposing a Set of Criteria to Distinguish Right-Wing Parties in Western Europe



    Johannes Kiess is Researcher in the EU FP7-project LIVEWHAT at the University of Siegen, Germany, and a phd candidate in political science.

    Oliver Decker is a Member of the Faculty of Medicine at the University Leipzig, Germany, Head of the Research Unit Societal Change and Modern Medicine, and Head of the Center for the Study of Right Wing Extremism and Democracy.

    Elmar Brähler was until 2013 the head of the Department of Medical Psychology and Medical Sociology at the University of Leipzig, Germany, and is responsible for a longitudinal research project monitoring the right-wing extremism attitudes in Germany (with Oliver Decker).

    "This thoughtful and insightful volume provides readers with a comprehensive overview of Germanophone research on right-wing extremism, and introduces a range of epistemological and methodological debates on the topic at hand." - Katherine Williams, Cardiff University