June 24, 2016: Seminar on political legitimation strategies

  • Time: 16:00-17:00
  • Venue: Institute of Political Science (Leiden University, Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences), Pieter de la Court building, Room 5.A37 (Wassenaarseweg 52, 2333 AK Leiden)

Honorata Mazepus: Russians love… fair authorities too. Legitimation strategies and citizen conceptions of legitimacy across political regimes

Kissing PutinScholars indicate that legitimacy of authoritarian regimes is generally based on the (promise of) outputs delivered by the regimes (output legitimacy). Moreover, legitimation strategies used by the authorities to convince citizens about their right to rule vary from claims based on ideology (including nationalism), foundational myth, personalism, clientelism and patronage, to dividing societies into loyalist and enemies.

Democracies, on the other hand, base their legitimacy mainly on the electoral procedures (input legitimacy). The balance between input and output legitimacy is not clear in hybrid regimes that mix democratic and autocratic elements in their rule. It is even more difficult to discern what constitutes the basis of legitimacy assessments for citizens in hybrid regimes, than to distil the claims to legitimacy made by the rulers. Socialization within certain political regime or political culture is believed to affect ‘various orientations toward political matters that one is expected to have…’. As a result, the criteria used by citizens to assess political authorities and prevailing conceptions of legitimacy are expected to differ across regimes.

This talk will build on the literature on legitimation strategies of authoritarian regimes (Russia in particular) and compare citizen conceptions of legitimacy in five countries with different political regimes (The Netherlands, France, Poland, Ukraine, and Russia).

About Honorata Mazepus

Honorata MazepusHonorata Mazepus is a PhD candidate affiliated with the Political Legitimacy research profile area. She is interested in what motivates individuals to approve, obey and support political authorities and institutions. Specifically, she is investigating the balance between instrumental and normative reasons citizens have to grant legitimacy to authorities. Her focus is on the role of fairness (distributive and procedural) in evaluations of political authorities by citizens in democratic and non-democratic political regimes. She is especially fascinated by how citizens evaluate political authorities in mixed regimes such as Russia and whether the criteria they use differ significantly from the criteria used by citizens in democracies.

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