Populism As A Political Communication Style: A Comparative Analysis of AKP's Political Discourse


Bulut A. T. , Hacioglu N.

ISTANBUL UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF FACULTY OF POLITICAL SCIENCES-SIYASAL BILGILER FAKULTESI DERGISI, cilt.27, ss.187-219, 2018 (ESCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier

  • Cilt numarası: 27 Konu: 2
  • Basım Tarihi: 2018
  • Doi Numarası: 10.26650/siyasal.2018.27.2.0009
  • Dergi Adı: ISTANBUL UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF FACULTY OF POLITICAL SCIENCES-SIYASAL BILGILER FAKULTESI DERGISI
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.187-219

Özet

This study, through quantitative analysis, aims to investigate the level and kind of populism in modern Turkish political discourse. In this regard, the rhetoric of the AKP, CHP and MHP (Justice and Development Party, Republican People's Party, and Nationalist Movement Party, respectively) were comparatively analyzed using parliamentary group speeches in the TGNA (Turkish Grand National Assembly). Populist parties are typically opposition parties that, once in power, cease their anti-establishment rhetoric. In Turkey, however, the AKP has ruled the country for 16 years, all the while maintaining its populist style. This makes the party an outlier. It is in this context, then, that we have analyzed and compared AKP's political discourse with the two other parties, in order to measure their levels of populism and how the three resemble or differ from each other. For the study, sixty parliamentary group speeches were coded using quantitative hand-coding procedures, and data that measured the level and frequency of their populist discourse were gathered. According to the findings, AKP engages in a high level of populist discourse, yet components of its populist rhetoric are significantly different than MHP and CHP. The results show that the AKP uses Islamist and foreign policy populism more frequently than other two parties. The party also uses, anti-establishment populist discourse almost as frequently as the actual opposition parties.