Dr. Sinem Adar

Humboldt University

How do populists use diversity to win elections? Case of Turkey

Is it a coincidence that much of populist discourse in Europe focuses on Muslims? Sociologist Sinem Adar of Berlin’s Humboldt University explores how populist parties use diversity as a tactical resource to mobilize voters, using Turkey as an example.

Look out for...

  • ‘The people’ 
    • vertical – ‘the people’ as morally superior vs. corrupt ‘cosmopolitan’ elite
    • horizontal – insiders vs. outsiders
  • Erdogan was inclusive of diversity. So populism is not always anti-diversity. 
  • Erdoğan appealed to Turkey’s multi-cultural heritage
  • June 2015 election Erdoğan responded by not recognising the results of election