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Article

Американский консерватизм и вызов популизма: теоретический и идеологический аспекты

The challenge of right-wing populism to conservatism and liberal democracy in the United States deserves the most accurate analysis through the prism of an ideological approach. The author investigates ideological structures of American conservatism and populism on the basis of Michael Frieden’s method of «ideological morphology». The methodology of the paper divides ideologies on thin-centered ideology and host ones. The former ones, which include populism, shape their discourse using the concepts of more universal host ideologies like conservatism. The ideological contents of the main types of American conservatism (traditionalism, libertarianism, social conservatism, neoconservatism, paleoconservatism) and various types of populism are under examination in the research. The development of the intellectual conservative movement in the United States in correlation with the ideological evolution of populism is investigated. The interrelatedness of American conservatism and populism at different historical stages is revealed. The author considers the role of American conservatism in the formation of Trumpism, which is leaving the political scene after the 2020 elections, maybe for a while, as a contemporary type of populism in the United States, defines its basic elements such as the antithesis of the ‘pure Americans’ and the ‘corrupt elite’, and the concept of the ‘common people’s will.’ Trumpism, on the one hand, creates a threat to liberal democracy in the United States, and, on the other hand, it is not devoid of potential to correct it. The author has discovered the acceptance of paleoconservative ideas of foreign policy isolationism and economic protectionism by Trumpism as well as the correlation between Trumpism and traditionalism in the domestic political agenda during the presidency of Donald Trump. The 2020 presidential elections results are analyzed in the article in the context of the ideological and political evolution of the Republican Party.

Key words: American conservatism, Republican Party, populism, Trumpism, liberal democracy, ideology, pluralism, elitism, Donald J. Trump.