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Elitism, Populism, and European Politics$
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Jack Hayward

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198280354

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198280351.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 03 August 2021



Mediocre Élites Elected by Mediocre Peoples

(p.1) Introduction
Elitism, Populism, and European Politics

Ralf Dahrendorf

Oxford University Press

The re‐emergence in the 1990s of a credibility gap between political leaders and the electorate is characterized by five features: there is a continuing erosion of the class basis of politics; the stabilizing effects of the Cold War have disappeared; civil society is turning against those who govern; localism is asserting itself; and political leaderships are confused. The change is more a phase in a recurring cycle than a long‐term trend.

Keywords:   civil society, class, credibility, leaders, localism

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