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date: 17 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

The literature on the radical right’s electorate offers a plethora of potential explanations as to why people vote for the radical right. This chapter organizes the presumptive causes of right-wing voting along the lines of the familiar micro-meso-macro scheme, focusing both on a number of landmark studies and on some of the latest research. In doing so, it weighs the evidence in favor of and against some prominent hypotheses about the conditions for radical right party success, including the pure-protest hypothesis, the charismatic-leader hypothesis, and the silent-counterrevolution hypothesis. It also discusses the existing knowledge on the effects of a host of meso- and macro-level factors, and points out some directions for further research. The chapter concludes that radical right mobilization is now the rule rather than the exception, and that we should perhaps focus on understanding why it is not successful in some cases.

Keywords: radical right, voter behavior, right-wing voting, right-wing parties, electorate

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