Circumstantial Liberals: Ethnic Minorities, Political Competition, and Democracy

Please join the Zoom 5 minutes before the event begins.

Ethnic minorities make contemporary Europe increasingly diverse. The prevailing wisdom in research on ethnic politics is that ethnicity is a trouble-maker disrupting programmatic politics — it tends to prioritize group identity over ideology, polity or policy, principle over compromise. In short, ethnicity is expected to be a source of particularistic tension. This talk takes a theoretical step back. Approaching ethnic politics as a component of normal politics, it investigates the ideological potential of ethnicity, and examines the conditions that determine the formation of diverse preferences and behavior among ethnic groups and their representatives. The talk seeks to answer central questions: What are the political preferences of ethnic minority groups and their representatives? How are ethnic preferences translated into political representation, how does this representation shape political competition, and with what systemic effects?

Discussant: Nico Buettner (Oxford)