What is cosmopolitan in drinking the flower
Right-wing populism"We have awakened from political lethargy"
The EU election showed a loss of votes in the traditional popular parties and gains in the Greens and AfD. These are not normal election results, admits the Darmstadt sociologist Cornelia Koppetsch and says: "No, we are in the middle of a turning point". Since the fall of the Berlin Wall, all conditions have changed at all levels. That has now also arrived in politics and the importance of the people's parties is dwindling.
The new split
She observes a new division in society into cosmopolitan parties like the Greens and right-wing populist parties like the AfD. That is the "new metapolarity" that would have replaced the old polarity between conservative and social democratic parties. This also includes new inequalities. In the new "world society and world economy" one has to part with old conceptions of content about sovereignty, state and society.
A globalized society can no longer be governed nationally. But that is what the mainstream parties would have suggested. "But the nation no longer exists within that framework." In contrast, the sociologist is of the opinion that we no longer have "just one citizenship, but several political, social and cultural citizenships."
Communities that no longer have national connotations are formed in cosmopolitan centers. In these "transnationalization processes", new cultural patterns are being established. There are "cosmopolitan fractions of the middle class that are no longer so nationally oriented."
There is a split between people who are fleeing forwards, who are getting involved in diversity and we have others whose identities are stuck in old structures, also because they owe a lot to the state, to this nation and to secure their privileges are dependent on the welfare state ". Suddenly, however," groups are to be integrated that they consider to be outsiders. "For example, migrants.
The causes of right-wing populism
Around four million people have emigrated from East Germany. In some parts of the country, the AfD is on the way to becoming a People's Party. Mobility studies show that people are concentrated there who have been deeply affected by neoliberalism. After 1989 they had experienced a kind of shock therapy and devaluation of their biographies. The dwindling regions are still shrinking and the proportion of those who have been socially relegated is high.
While one cosmopolitan class speaks of openness, diversity and diversity, the others are alienated by their "eccentric lifestyle". Mocking about the transgender or vegan way of life shows that a class that used to be style-forming "feels pushed to the edge". The AfD use that. The cosmopolitan class determines "what we shouldn't say, that we shouldn't smoke, that we should speak in a gender-sensitive manner and how we should eat. This is perceived as an instrument of power," said the sociologist.
Cornelia Koppetsch names three reasons for the emergence of populist parties. First: personal crises, hurt, resignation, frustration, social decline. Second: social crises like the financial crisis. And thirdly: Loss of legitimacy in public order as it is being driven by the cosmopolitan bourgeoisie. Not everyone felt that they were in good hands in society, and the "destructive forces are picking up speed". The people have broken out of the ideal world. That doesn't have to be bad. Everyone has now woken up and there is "a lot of discussion." The younger people are also there, as the discussion about the Rezo video shows. "We have awakened from political lethargy."
Statements by our interlocutors reflect their own views. Deutschlandfunk does not adopt statements made by its interlocutors in interviews and discussions as its own.
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