How do mainstream parties ‘become’ mainstream, and pariah parties ‘become’ pariahs? Conceptualizing the processes of mainstreaming and pariahing in the labelling of political parties

Journal article


Moffitt, Benjamin. (2022). How do mainstream parties ‘become’ mainstream, and pariah parties ‘become’ pariahs? Conceptualizing the processes of mainstreaming and pariahing in the labelling of political parties. Government and Opposition. 57(3), pp. 385-403. https://doi.org/10.1017/gov.2021.5
AuthorsMoffitt, Benjamin
Abstract

How does a political party become ‘mainstream’? And what makes some parties receive arguably the opposite designation – ‘pariah party’? This conceptual article examines the processes by which parties’ mainstream or pariah status must be constructed, negotiated and policed, not only by political scientists in the pursuit of case selection, but by several actors actively involved in the political process, including media actors and political parties themselves. It explains how these actors contribute to these processes of ‘mainstreaming’ and ‘pariahing’, considers their motivations and provides illustrative examples of how such processes take place. As such, the article moves beyond the literature on the ways in which mainstream parties seek to deal with or respond to threats from a variety of pariah parties, instead paying attention to how those parties have been constructed as pariahs in the first place, and how these processes simultaneously contribute to the maintenance of mainstream party identities.

Keywordspolitical parties; mainstream parties; pariah parties; party types; media; mainstreaming
Year2022
JournalGovernment and Opposition
Journal citation57 (3), pp. 385-403
PublisherCambridge University Press
ISSN0017-257X
1477-7053
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1017/gov.2021.5
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85102826231
Page range385-403
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online17 Mar 2021
Publication process dates
Deposited06 Jul 2021
Accepted04 Feb 2021
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