On November 13, a guest lecture on “The rise of the “Alternative for Germany (AfD)" took place in Pelin Ayan Musil's Political Parties and Party Systems course. The guest lecture provided an overview of the rise of the AfD, an extreme-right political party whose stance ranged from anti-EU to anti-immigration. The guest speaker was Barbora Benešová from the German Embassy in Prague and the Goethe-Institute. Benesova, as an alumnus of the International Parliamentary Scholarship (IPS) spent six months at the Bundestag and shared her observations on the AfD during the lecture.

The main focus of this lecture was the unexpectedly strong performance of the AfD in the 2017 German federal election and how this has impacted both the atmosphere and debates in the Bundestag. The lecture and the Q/A session addressed topics like who votes for the AfD, what tactics the AfD leadership uses in parliament to further appeal to the people, who the members of the AfD are and why the party has become so successful recently. The audience then discussed whether the rise of the AfD can be interpreted as a threat to liberal democracy or as a symptom that shows the limits of liberal democracy.  

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Publication date: November 27, 2018