Populism and Radicalism

Political Populism and Radicalism in peripheral Areas

Not only with the electoral successes of the AfD since 2015/16 have populist and radical ideologies and cultures, movements and parties, but also patterns of action and strategies of organized actors moved into the center of sociopolitical attention and political-sociological research. This is especially true for peripheral rural areas, for East Germany and for Saxony.

On the one hand, there are transnational structural and cultural factor complexes that have promoted the worldwide rise of populism. Trump (USA), PiS (Poland) or FN (France) make it clear that we are dealing with world social conditions and mechanisms of emergence and spread. On the other hand, these factors 'translate' into local and regional structural and action contexts, form peculiarities and specific dynamics that require corresponding analyses. In and for Saxony, it can be shown, among other things, that the right-wing populism of PEGIDA and AfD requires not only the long-term history of Saxony, the legacy of GDR society such as the German unification process and the long period of government of the Saxon CDU, but also specific local conditions in the city of Dresden or in the (peripheral) border region of East Saxony to be included in order to understand and deal with its genuine character.

The TRAWOS-Institute cooperates in this field not only with research institutions in Saxony and the Federal Republic of Germany, but also with providers of political education (Federal and State Centres for Political Education, the Friedrich-Ebert-Foundation, the Wilhelm-Külz-Foundation or Rosa-Luxemburg-Foundation as well as adult education centres) and politically oriented associations and networks in the region (e.g. Hillersche Villa e.V. Zittau).



  • Right-wing populism and right-wing extremism in Saxony and East Germany: structural, institutional, cultural conditions and dynamics (1/2016-12/2021)
  • Right-wing extremism in the local context (2012-2013 at the JSU Jena)