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Semantic pirouettes and staged populism: communication strategies in contemporary Spanish politics

Rivas Venegas, Miguel; Technische Universität Berlin, Zentrum für Antisemitismusforschung (Organisation)

Current developments of Spanish politics, such as the exponential growth of the Spanish extreme right –represented both by the recently formed radical party Vox and a radicalised Partido Popular–, have reinforced and stimulated the expansion of national-populist politics at both sides of the political spectrum. Well established left-wing nationalist parties such as EH Bildu in the Basque-speaking territories, as well as the until recently fast-growing progressive party Podemos in the rest of the Spanish State represent, on the other hand, the left-wing counterpart. This article offers new perspectives on the study of Spanish national-populism by the simultaneous analysis of its “lexical arsenals” and visual communication strategies in social media campaigns, posters and political performances. The chosen methodology aims to combine the notions of “palabras totem” –keywords with particular relevance in the discourse-building strategies of these parties–those of “purr” and “snarl” words –imbued with particularly positive-negative connotations – and that of “lexical arsenals” to face the study of the “special languages” of Spanish national-populism.
Published in: Jahrbuch für Antisemitismusforschung 29 (2020), Metropol