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10 May 2023

Populism in Europe and Latin America

Paulina Astroza

Universidad de Concepción

Paulina Astroza

On Wednesday, May 10th, we had the honour of welcoming Professor Paulina Astroza from Universidad de Concepción to deliver an engaging lecture at the Rio School on Global Governance, Democracy and Human Rights, giving us much to reflect upon the current political scenario. The activity was organised by the FGV Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence on EU-South America Global Governance and co-funded by the European Commission under the Erasmus+ Programme.

Professor Astroza gave us a detailed exploration of populism in Europe and Latin America. The lecture began by defining populism and discussing its origins, tracing its roots back to the 19th century and examining how it has evolved over time. Professor Astroza then delved into the various forms of populism that exist in different European countries, exploring the unique political and cultural contexts that have given rise to these movements.

The lecture also examined the relationship between populism and traditional left-right politics, arguing that while populism often presents itself as a rejection of the political establishment, it is not necessarily ideologically coherent or consistent. Instead, populist movements tend to be defined more by their opposition to existing power structures than by any particular set of beliefs or policies.

In addition to exploring the internal dynamics of populist movements, Professor Astroza also examined their impact on issues such as immigration, globalisation, and the European Union. She argued that while populist movements have had some success in shaping public opinion and influencing policy debates, they have also faced significant challenges in translating their rhetoric into concrete policy changes.

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