Politics, Populism and the Media


Bard College Berlin
Wednesdays and Fridays 10:45-12:15 (GMT+1) / 12:45-14:15 (GMT+3)
14 WEEKS (03.02.21 - 21.05.21)


This course is designed to provide students with analytical tools to conceptualise the relationship between the media, populism and politics. It focuses on the cultural, social and economic consequences of the formation and implementation of policies that shape the media. Special attention will be paid to the question of what kind of economic environment the media operates in and by whom it is controlled. Among the themes to be explored are the links between the transformation of the media and the rise of neoliberal policies and right wing populism around the world; the relationship between populist discourses and the media (e.g. the process of mediatization of politics and the threat of media populism to democratic values); the link between the new media (in particular, social media) and populism; the construction of identities (e.g. ethnicity, minorities as well as gender and masculinity) in the media.

This course will be online. It will be offered in collaboration with Off-University and with the funding of the Philipp Schwartz Initiative. Students from outside BCB will also be able to enroll and participate in the course.


A full outline of the course syllabus can be found here. 

Please note that there will be a preparatory meeting that will take place during the usual class hours one week before the class starts. In this meeting, we will introduce you how the platform works and we will offer technical support so that everybody is technically ready for the first session.


Aysuda Kölemen completed her PhD in Political Science at the University of Georgia, Athens, USA. Her area of research is comparative politics of the USA, Western Europe and Turkey. Aysuda joined Bard College Berlin as a PSI fellow in 2019. She has been an active member of Off-University since its founding. She currently works on autocratization and academic freedoms as well as the impact of social policies on the construction of motherhood and gender roles in Turkey from a comparative perspective. Her most recent and upcoming publications are With Coşkun, G. B (2020). Illiberal Democracy or Electoral Autocracy: The Case of Turkey. In The Emergence of Illiberalism (pp. 166-187). Routledge. Forthcoming: (2021) No, Your Other Left! The Fight for the Soul of the Democratic Party, Amerikastudien, 66.

Yasemin Özgün received her master’s degree in Political Theory from University of Essex, England, with a thesis titled “The Paradox of Representation in Politics”. She got her PhD with the thesis titled "Democracy Discourse of the Period of 27 May 1960” at Ankara University, Institute of Social Sciences. Amongst her field of interests are political sociology, media and politics, gender studies, political economy, Turkish political life. Her selected publications are I) Özgün Y (2020) “Feminizm ve Aile Tartışmaları- Teori, Politika- Pratik İlişkisi ve Çelişkileri”, (“Feminism and Family Debates- Theory-Politics- Practices Relations and Contradictions”) in Modern Türkiye’de Siyasi Düşünce: Feminizm (Political Thought in Modern Turkey: Feminism) 10, İstanbul: İletişim. II) Özgün Y & Ö. Müftüoğlu, (2011) "Turkey after 2008: Another Crisis – The Same Responses?" in Trade Unions and the Global Crisis: Labour's Visions, Strategies and Responses, Melisa Serrano, Edlira Xhafa and Michael Fichter (eds) (Geneva, International Labour Office, 2011), 191-202.

The course is hosted by Bard College Berlin and funded by Philipp Schwartz Initiative.