Major Papers


Populism, Europe, Latin America, Inclusionray, Exclusionary


Much of the literature on populism emphasizes the inclusive character of Latin American populism and the exclusive character of European populism; however, there is a dearth of research that analyzes the rise of European left-wing inclusionary populism following the 2008 global financial crisis, particularly the case of Syriza in Greece. Thus, this study seeks address that gap and challenge Mudde and Rovira Kaltwasser’s geographical differentiation framework, which limits exclusionary populism to Europe and inclusionary populism to Latin America. Adopting Ernesto Laclau’s discursive theory of populism, which draws on post-Marxist and post-structuralist theory, this study suggests that his alternative conceptualization of populism as a political logic of articulation is the most effective model for analyzing cross-regional cases of populism as it does not limit sub-types of populism in terms of ideological content and geographical scope. By applying Laclau’s model to the case of Syriza, this study argues that Syriza’s inclusionary populist profile, which makes an appeal to a ‘plural people,’ effectively undermines Mudde and Rovira Kaltwasser’s populist model.

Keywords: Inclusionary and exclusionary populism, Syriza, post-structuralist discourse theory, post-structuralism, hegemony, Ernesto Laclau

Primary Advisor

Dr. Jesse Salah Ovadia

Program Reader

Dr. Tom Najem

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Political Science

Document Type

Major Research Paper

Convocation Year