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Political Color of Metaphor, with Focus on Black: The rise and fall of the Flemish extreme right Vlaams Blok and Vlaams Belang

Christ'l De Landtsheer

Abstract


Abstract

“Black Sunday” still is how Belgian citizens speak about the 1991 election victory of the Flemish extreme right party Vlaams Blok. The 2004 condemnation by court for racism made the party chose a softer image and a new name. This article examines the ideological meaning of the transformation of Vlaams Blok [Flemish Bloc] into Vlaams Belang [Flemish Interest]. Do the changes implemented by the party similar to other European radical right parties testify of a real ideological transformation or are these just a cleansing of the top visible layer? This empirical article presents a comparative metaphor analysis and a thematic content analysis of seven hundred party press releases (2002-2014). The press releases testify of different thematic contents embedded in a by the years slightly less extreme right wing metaphor style that may have contributed to the 2014 passing on of the parties’ votes to the right wing Flemish nationalist populist party N-VA [Nationaal Vlaamse Alliantie].

Keywords: political metaphor, extreme right, Belgium, political parties, Vlaams Blok, Vlaams Belang, Flanders

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Bibliography: De Landtsheer, Christ'l: Political Color of Metaphor, with Focus on Black: The rise and fall of the Flemish extreme right Vlaams Blok and Vlaams Belang, PCS, 1-2-2015, pp. 85-106.
https://doi.org/10.3224/pcs.v6i1-2.07

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