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Vigilantism in Greece: the case of the Golden Dawn

Vrakopoulos, C. and Halikiopoulou, D. (2019) Vigilantism in Greece: the case of the Golden Dawn. In: Mares, M. and Tore, B. (eds.) Vigilantism Against Migrants and Minorities. Routledge, London and New York. (In Press)

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Abstract/Summary

This chapter focuses on vigilantism in Greece. Specifically, it examines the Golden Dawn, a group, which beyond engaging in vigilante activities is also the third biggest political party in the country. The Golden Dawn is distinct from a number of other European parties broadly labelled under the ‘far right’ umbrella in that in was formed as a violent grass-roots movement by far right activists, its main activities prior to 2012 confined to the streets. It can be described as a vigilante group, which frequently uses violence, engages in street politics, has a strong focus on community-based activities, and its members perceive themselves as ‘street soldiers’. Since 2013 a number of its leading cadres, who are also members of the Greek parliament, have been undergoing trial for maintaining a criminal organisation and other criminal acts including murder and grievous bodily harm. The progressive entrenchment of this group in the Greek political system has raised a number of questions about its potential implications on the nature of democracy and policy-making. This chapter examines various dimensions of the Golden Dawn’s vigilante activities. Following a brief overview of the Greek socio-political context, it proceeds to examine the party’s ideology, its organizational structure, its various operations, communications activities and relationships with other political actors and groups in Greece.

Item Type:Book or Report Section
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Politics, Economics and International Relations > Politics and International Relations
ID Code:80282
Publisher:Routledge

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