Gender, populist attitudes, and voting: Explaining the gender gap in voting for populist radical right and populist radical left parties
SourceWest European Politics, 40, 4, (2017), pp. 821-847
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ RSCR SOC
Politicologie t/m 2019
West European Politics
SubjectInstitute for Management Research; Inequality, cohesion and modernization; Ongelijkheid, cohesie en modernisering
Empirical studies have demonstrated that compared to almost all other parties, populist radical right (PRR) parties draw more votes from men than from women. However, the two dominant explanations that are generally advanced to explain this disparity - gender differences regarding socio-economic position and lower perceptions regarding the threat of immigrants - cannot fully explain the difference. The article contends that it might actually be gender differences regarding the conceptualisation of society and politics - populist attitudes - that explain the gender gap. Thus, the gap may be due, in part, to differences in socialisation. The article analyses EES 2014 data on voting for the populist radical right and the populist radical left in nine European countries. Across countries, the gender gap in voting for the PRR is indeed partly explained by populist attitudes. For populist radical left parties, the results are less clear, suggesting that populism has different meanings to voters on the left and on the right.
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