Crisis and Extremism. How Does an Extreme Far Right Emerge in a Modern Democracy? Evidence from Greece’s Golden Dawn

29 Pages Posted: 5 Mar 2018 Last revised: 15 May 2020

See all articles by Costas Roumanias

Costas Roumanias

Athens University of Economics and Business - Department of International and European Economic Studies

Spyros Skouras

Athens University of Economics and Business - Department of International and European Economic Studies

Nikos Christodoulakis

Athens University of Economics and Business

Date Written: February 25, 2018

Abstract

We trace the rise of Golden Dawn, one of the most extreme and violent European far-right parties, from the fringe to a prominent position in Greek politics. We use regression analysis to show that its rise is associated with changes in voting behaviour caused by the deep socioeconomic crisis the country went through after 2008. We show that the demand factors affecting the GD vote were triggered by structural changes in the supply side and the implosion of the two-party system that followed the signing of the bail-out agreement (Memorandum) with the country’s creditors. Our results have implications about the political manifestation of socioeconomic grievances and their effect on the far-right vote: whereas socioeconomic grievances usually contribute towards a latent dissatisfaction by the electorate, this might need a sudden supply-side trigger in order to manifest itself, giving little warning signs in advance.

Keywords: crisis, extreme right, issue ownership, structural change, immigration

JEL Classification: D72

Suggested Citation

Roumanias, Costas and Skouras, Spyros and Christodoulakis, Nikos, Crisis and Extremism. How Does an Extreme Far Right Emerge in a Modern Democracy? Evidence from Greece’s Golden Dawn (February 25, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3129587 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3129587

Costas Roumanias (Contact Author)

Athens University of Economics and Business - Department of International and European Economic Studies ( email )

GR-10434 Athens
Greece

HOME PAGE: http://www.aueb.gr/users/roumanias

Spyros Skouras

Athens University of Economics and Business - Department of International and European Economic Studies ( email )

GR-10434 Athens
Greece

Nikos Christodoulakis

Athens University of Economics and Business ( email )

76 Patission Street
Athens, 104 34
Greece

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