14. Dezember 2023

Nitzan Lebovic
Populism & Complicity

Donnerstag, 14. Dezember 2023, 17 Uhr

IKM, Großer Seminarraum E 0101 
mdw, Anton-von-Webern-Platz 1, Wien

Why is populism intimidating our democratic institutions? Why is it so hard to define? Since 2016 and the election of Donald Trump an all-out war on democratic institutions seems to engulf the populist right wing in the US. A similar tendency was clearly taking place in Israel,  after the re-election of Benjamin Netanyahu in January, 2023. Populist rhetoric divided the world between “us” and “them” while requiring complicity, if not active collaboration, by both supporters and dissenters. My paper demonstates that populism and complicity are temporal, and not ideological forms of control. Both demand an accelerated transformation of politics, without a clear vision, plan or necessary endpoint. 

Nitzan Lebovic is Professor of History at Lehigh University, USA, and focuses on the history of political concepts. He is currently researching the history of complicity in a transnational context since 1945. While his first book traced the history of Lebensphilosophie in German and German-Jewish culture, his second monograph examined the melancholy of early Zionist writing. His forthcoming third monograph is dedicated to the history of temporal concepts in the twentieth century.