Normalising Xenophobia and Cosmopolitan Justice:
The New Meaning of Populism in Europe
This paper, first, will discuss the notion of 21st century populism while reflecting conceptually on previous waves of historical populism in Europe, and the meaning of cosmopolitan city space, past and present. Second, it will look at some examples of recent xenophobic attacks in urban and rural areas of different countries, and the way local anti-racist counter movements respond to this. We argue that we have to reflect on a paradox process of ‘normalisation’ with respect to open societies that mulitiplies divergent populist positions towards mobility and migration, e.g. creating blurred boundaries between strangers and citizens while constructing new frontiers of difference, belonging and class.