How New is the New National Front?

This is an Archive of a Past Event

In this presentation Stanford professor Cécile Alduy will discuss how her new digital humanities research project maps Marine Le Pen's rhetorical turn.

Marine Le Pen, the head of France's far right National Front party, is predicted to arrive first in the first round of the upcoming French Presidential elections in 2017, with up to 28% of intended votes. Since she took the party over from her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, in 2011, she has carried the FN to first place, winning an already unprecedented 25% of the votes in France's 2015 elections. What does she say that resonates with French voters so strongly? And how did she manage to turn the once infamous "FN" into an almost mainstream party that claims to be the last champion of French republican values?

Using text mining software and textual analyses, Cécile Alduy has ciphered more than 500 speeches and texts by Jean-Marie and Marine Le Pen to pinpoint exactly how, and on what topics, the daughter's discourse differs from that of her father.

In this talk, literary studies meet digital humanities and political science to crack the new National Front rhetorical code and uncover the deeper ideological and mythological structures beyond the stylistic polishing.