Sven Engesser

Authoritarianism, Populists and the Media: An Integrative Theoretical Model

This talk follows Rensmann’s (2017) call to broaden the perspective in populism research by taking culture and the media into account. It presents an integrative theoretical model illustrating the complex relations between authoritarianism, electoral success of populist politicians, and populism in the media on the micro and macro level.


Political Elites and Populism in US and Europe


  • Political Elite
  • Populism
  • Media

The model draws on the cultural backlash thesis, theories of authoritarianism, political psychology, as well as journalism and media effects research.

It gathers the extant empirical evidence and suggests future avenues of research. In sum, the talk aims at providing a comprehensive overview of the antecedents and consequences of populism in society.