“It is in the nation-state that democracy resides”: How the populist radical right discursively manipulates the concept of democracy in the EU parliamentary elections

Alekseev, Alexander
Journal of Language and Politics


This article explores the concept of democracy is constructed, conveyed, and instrumentalised in the discourses of the populist radical right in the current EU context. The comparative analysis of the speeches of the leaders of two dissimilar PRR parties in government (Polish ) and in opposition (French ) in the run-up to the 2019 European elections using tools of the discourse-historical and discourse-conceptual approaches to CDS highlights the common core of PRR interpretations of democracy, influenced by the shared axiological, institutional, and discursive framework of the EU. It shows that in the EU the PRR constructs the concept of democracy as an ideological complex, by diluting its interpretation of democracy with elements. Only by advancing and interpretations of the people, does the PRR bring the concept of democracy in line with its ideological core of and