Gender as symbolic glue: the position and role of conservative and far right parties in the anti-gender mobilizations in Europe
This publication is a result of a successful cooperation between the Foundation for European Progressive Studies (FEPS) and the regional gender programme of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) on critically analyzing anti-gender discourses in European far right and conservative party programmes and the role of the respective parties in shaping the discourse and mobilisations. The publication looks at five case studies: France, Germany, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia with the purpose to comparatively examine the commonalities and divergences of this phenomenon, also offering a chronological overview. This topic is of high importance due to the current mobilisations rejecting the term ‘gender’ itself. Anti-gender movements want to claim that gender equality is an “ideology”, and introduce the misleading terms “gender ideology” or “gender theory” which distort the achievements of gender equality. The main targets are the alleged “propaganda” for LGBTI rights, for reproductive rights and biotechnology, for sexual and equality education. This phenomenon has negative consequences for the legislation on gender equality. In the current publication, we are looking at this phenomenon in connection to the programmes and discourses of far right and conservative parties, as well as the overlaps among them. Following the argumentation presented in the papers, these political parties have a stake on the issue.
All the peer-reviewed papers follow a common structure. The authors drafted conclusions and subsequent policy recommendations for the progressive side to stand up against fundamentalist political activism.