Seminar: Elmar Schlüter – Support for anti-Muslim movements
Explaining Germans’ attitudes on PEGIDA, or:
why and when do majority members support anti-Muslim movements?
Since its emergence in october 2014 the extreme right-wing movement PEGIDA (Patriotische Europater gegen die Islamisierung des Abendlandes) figures high on Germany’s public and political agenda. Organizing its public protests around opposition to Muslim immigrants, Pegida attracted large numbers of attendants at several demonstrations across the country. Previous studies – typically conducted in situ during Pegida protest events – identified several factors presumed to shape citizens’ actual participation in Pegida protests. Yet it remains unclear to what extent the insights from this line of research apply to the German general population’s attitudes on Pegida. In addition, although the value of theoretical models that integrate separate hypotheses is apparent, to date no study demonstrates the utility of this approach for the case of citizens’ attitudes towards anti-Muslim movements. This paper aims to remedy these gaps in the literature. To this end, we synthesize predictions from research on economic deprivation, anti-Muslim prejudice and political alienation, and test our model using data from six large-scale cross-sectional population surveys. In brief, the findings point to the key role of political alienation as moderator of the assocation between ecconomic deprivation, anti-immigrant/Muslim prejudice and attitudes on the Pegida-movement. Together, these findings might help to better understand why and under what conditions majority members support anti-Muslim movements.
Lecture by Elmar Schlüter, Justus Liebig University in Gießen (Duitsland