"The book is both a study of Polish politics and a critical analysis of journalism. Harper demonstrates convincingly that journalism not only describes reality but, through its performative language, constructs reality. Harper shows that, all too often, the term ‘populism’ is used not so much to describe or analyse reality as to deprecate those with whom we disagree, and that the very discourse of Western journalists resembles the populism attributed to PiS. Harper shows that the success of PiS cannot be explained in simple terms, such as a revolt of the excluded against the privileged or as a conflict between rural and urban dwellers, the ‘winners’ or ‘losers’ of transformation or the uneducated versus the educated. The book is an informative and interesting study not only of Polish politics but also of the relationship between politics and journalism."
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