Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2463

Article | Open Access

Is Europe Cascading into Fascism? Addressing Key Concepts including Gender and Violence

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Abstract:  Is Europe cascading into fascism? The answer to this question matters for understanding the opposition to gender equality projects in Europe. The article addresses some of the key concepts needed to answer this question. Is ‘fascism’ or ‘authoritarian neoliberalism’ or just ‘neoliberalism’ the most appropriate concept to capture the turn to the right? The article compares the extent to which these concepts encompass ‘violence’ and ‘gender’. ‘Fascism’ is an important benchmark from European history, but Europe has not yet reached its levels of violence. The qualifier ‘authoritarian’ is not needed for ‘neoliberalism’ since it generates a trajectory towards violence. Some conceptual work is required in order to develop ‘neoliberalism’ to encompass ‘gender’ and ‘violence’, but there are bodies of work that support such a development. Including gender in analyses of the macro level changes occurring in Europe requires the concept of ‘varieties of gender regime’, which enables the conceptualisation of neoliberalism as gendered.

Keywords:  Europe; fascism; gender; violence



© Sylvia Walby. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.