Document Type

Capstone Project (Open Access)

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)


Social, Behavioral & Global Studies


Global Studies

First Advisor

Kathryn Poethig

Second Advisor

Richard Harris


In my capstone, I claim that the populism of the 21st century should be considered a political style as elucidated by Benjamin Moffitt. But Moffitis’s understanding of political style does not adequately address how populism morphs through new technological systems, such as algorithms, filter bubbles, echo chambers in our internet devices. This theoretical framework takes necessary elements from past theories and stresses the performance that is vital to populism in our modern media ecosystem. The charismatic leader is no longer necessary, but the "opaque operations"( i.e algorithms, filter bubbles,echo chambers) allow populism to be almost self replicating. These “populist actors” can now reach their “people’”in ways we have not seen up to this point, reaffirming their political beliefs with communities of like-minded individuals. Populism as a political style is applicable to our technological conditions that are now in and are necessary component to contemporary populism.