Populism in abeyance: the survival of populist repertoires of contention in North Italy

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Long seen as divergent in nature, the fields of populist studies and social movement analysis have rarely been the focus of cross-disciplinary research. This paper, by encouraging such convergence makes two significant contributions to both the study of populism and social movements. First, by combining a discourse theoretical approach to populism with social movement theories of abeyance and ‘cultural repertoires’, it examines populist discourse as a form of contentious politics. Second, using primary and secondary sources of both a textual and visual nature, it applies this framework to a case study of North Italian populist regionalism and in doing so takes a diachronic approach to populism. This allows for a clearer understanding of not only of the decline of certain populist movements, but also how these movements’ repertoires are transmitted between separate waves of activism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)511-529
JournalSocial Movement Studies
Issue number4
Early online date24 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2022


  • abeyance
  • contentious politics
  • Populism
  • regionalism
  • repertoires of contention
  • social movements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Sociology and Political Science


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