Distinguished Research Professor 2021
Cas Mudde, Stanley Wade Shelton UGAF Professor in the Department of International Affairs, is recognized as one of the world’s leading social scientists writing on populism and far-right politics. Instead of viewing radical-right parties as fleeting or outside modern democracy, he has argued that they are part of modern democracy, even if their existence could threaten democratic ideals. He has conceived of populism as a “thin-centered ideology” that views society as split between a corrupt elite and a virtuous people, and as an illiberal but somewhat democratic response to liberal but somewhat undemocratic governance. In eight authored or co-authored books and 58 journal articles, he has influenced a new generation of scholars who apply his insights to a wide range of political phenomena. His recently co-authored book is an original, empirical study of contemporary Israeli settlers as a social movement and of their impact on Israeli politics and society.