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Passion and politics in the English Defence League

‘Loud and proud’: Politics and passion in the English Defence League is a study of grassroots activism in what is widely considered to be a violent Islamophobic and racist organisation.

The book uses interviews, informal conversations and extended observation at EDL events to critically reflect on the gap between the movement’s public image and activists’ own understandings of it. It details how activists construct the EDL, and themselves, as ‘not racist, not violent, just no longer silent’ inter alia through the exclusion of Muslims as a possible object of racism on the grounds that they are a religiously not racially defined group. In contrast activists perceive themselves to be ‘second-class citizens’, disadvantaged and discriminated by a ‘two-tier’ justice system that privileges the rights of ‘others’. This failure to recognise themselves as a privileged white majority explains why ostensibly intimidating EDL street demonstrations marked by racist chanting and nationalistic flag waving are understood by activists as standing ‘loud and proud’; the only way of ‘being heard’ in a political system governed by a politics of silencing.

Unlike most studies of ‘far right’ movements, this book focuses not on the EDL as an organisation – its origins, ideology, strategic repertoire and effectiveness – but on the individuals who constitute the movement. Its ethnographic approach challenges stereotypes and allows insight into the emotional as well as political dimension of activism. At the same time, the book recognises and discusses the complex political and ethical issues of conducting close-up social research with ‘distasteful’ groups.

Open Access (free)
Transgressing the cordon sanitaire: understanding the English Defence League as a social movement
Hilary Pilkington

Introduction Transgressing the cordon sanitaire: understanding the English Defence League as a social movement This book is political – but not by design. It is rendered so by its object of study (the English Defence League) and its context – the rise of a new ‘far right’1 and ‘populist radical right’ across Europe and, more recently, America. It argues that establishing an academic ‘cordon sanitaire’ (Mouffe, 2005: 72), in the form of typological and classificatory approaches that focus solely on the ideological dimensions of such movements and confine them to

in Loud and proud
Open Access (free)
Passion and politics
Hilary Pilkington

meanings individuals in movements of the populist radical right attach to their activism. It is also to suggest that such studies have political as well as academic value. Ethnography: a choice between politics and knowledge? Traditional studies of the far right tend to forefront the analysis of ideological frames and organisational effectiveness and take little account of the people who maintain such movements; individuals appear largely in the form of agglomerated socio-demographics of ‘supporters’ or ‘voters’ or as an undifferentiated mass following a charismatic

in Loud and proud
Open Access (free)
The Algerian war and the ‘emancipation’ of Muslim women, 1954–62
Author: Neil Macmaster

In May 1958, and four years into the Algerian War of Independence, a revolt again appropriated the revolutionary and republican symbolism of the French Revolution by seizing power through a Committee of Public Safety. This book explores why a repressive colonial system that had for over a century maintained the material and intellectual backwardness of Algerian women now turned to an extensive programme of 'emancipation'. After a brief background sketch of the situation of Algerian women during the post-war decade, it discusses the various factors contributed to the emergence of the first significant women's organisations in the main urban centres. It was only after the outbreak of the rebellion in 1954 and the arrival of many hundreds of wives of army officers that the model of female interventionism became dramatically activated. The French military intervention in Algeria during 1954-1962 derived its force from the Orientalist current in European colonialism and also seemed to foreshadow the revival of global Islamophobia after 1979 and the eventual moves to 'liberate' Muslim societies by US-led neo-imperialism in Afghanistan and Iraq. For the women of Bordj Okhriss, as throughout Algeria, the French army represented a dangerous and powerful force associated with mass destruction, brutality and rape. The central contradiction facing the mobile socio-medical teams teams was how to gain the trust of Algerian women and to bring them social progress and emancipation when they themselves were part of an army that had destroyed their villages and driven them into refugee camps.

Author: Sara De Vido

The book explores the relationship between violence against women on one hand, and the rights to health and reproductive health on the other. It argues that violation of the right to health is a consequence of violence, and that (state) health policies might be a cause of – or create the conditions for – violence against women. It significantly contributes to feminist and international human rights legal scholarship by conceptualising a new ground-breaking idea, violence against women’s health (VAWH), using the Hippocratic paradigm as the backbone of the analysis. The two dimensions of violence at the core of the book – the horizontal, ‘interpersonal’ dimension and the vertical ‘state policies’ dimension – are investigated through around 70 decisions of domestic, regional and international judicial or quasi-judicial bodies (the anamnesis). The concept of VAWH, drawn from the anamnesis, enriches the traditional concept of violence against women with a human rights-based approach to autonomy and a reflection on the pervasiveness of patterns of discrimination (diagnosis). VAWH as theorised in the book allows the reconceptualisation of states’ obligations in an innovative way, by identifying for both dimensions obligations of result, due diligence obligations, and obligations to progressively take steps (treatment). The book eventually asks whether it is not international law itself that is the ultimate cause of VAWH (prognosis).

Robert Andersen and Jocelyn A. J. Evans

presidential survey to update the analysis and presented a new model of political space at the electoral level – a tripartition into left, moderate-right and extreme-right political blocs – representing a radical departure from the traditional quadrille bipolaire, and exploding the bidimensional account into a series of cultural subdimensions. Employing these two datasets, together with the CEVIPOF legislative post-election survey from 1997 to update the analysis, we consider changes in the social and attitudinal determinants of political space since 1988. Our analysis takes

in The French party system
Cas Mudde

comprehensive analysis of the basic elements of the radical right-wing populist program and the shifts in emphasis of its two main components’ (1994: 109), the actual analysis he provides is a rather general account on the basis of some election programmes and pamphlets of the various parties. While this might suffice to note ‘a’ shift in emphasis, it is hardly a solid basis for a meaningful classification. Putting the extreme right party family to the test As can be seen from this short overview, different scholars group different parties together and do this under different

in The ideology of the extreme right
Open Access (free)
Gurharpal Singh

international developments. In the last decade much of the analysis of South Asian politics has been preoccupied with the rise of ethno-national movements – in Kashmir, Punjab, and the North-Eastern States, the emergence of the Hindu right (India), Sindh (Pakistan) and the Tamil–Singhalese conflict (Sri Lanka). Explanations of these movements have ranged from standard accounts of political management to those that question the very bases of political consolidation broadly understood as both institutionalization and statehood (Singh 2000). Inasmuch as these movements are

in Democratization through the looking-glass
Open Access (free)
Piercing the politics of silencing
Hilary Pilkington

increasingly assertive arguments made by, or on behalf of, white working-class communities, Kenny (2012: 24) has asked whether we should rethink our tendency to treat them as expressions of ‘resentment, racism and grievance’ and consider whether they might be thought of as a form of recognition politics and, in some cases, as demands which have a ‘rational’ basis and ‘merit a more sympathetic hearing by the state’. This raises a deeper question in relation to our understanding of democracy of the possibility that populist radical right movements such as the EDL may

in Loud and proud
Open Access (free)
Cas Mudde

feature of the party ideology. Various authors (e.g. Ignazi 1992; Betz 1994; Kitschelt 1995) have also stressed the salience of economic liberalism for extreme right parties. Indeed, some definitions of radical right (populist) parties come very close to the definition of neo-conservatism. As noted, however, these five parties do not in fact advocate ‘rightist free market economics’, as Kitschelt (1995: 2) argues, but rather support some form of welfare system, if only for their ‘own people’. Moreover, the two groups of parties differ even more fundamentally in that the

in The ideology of the extreme right