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Orban buttoning suit: Photo: “Viktor Orbán,” by Annika Haas (EU2017EE) licensed under CC Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0). Hue modified from the original.

Gera, Marton. ““Here, the Hungarian People Will Decide How to Raise Our Children”: Populist Rhetoric and Social Categorization in Viktor Orban´ ’S Anti-LGBTQ Campaign in Hungary.” New Perspectives. Interdisciplinary Journal of Central & East European Politics and International Relations, vol. 31, no. 2, 2023, pp. 104–129


This paper analyzes how the Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orban uses social categorization and ´ populist rhetoric in an anti-LGBTQ campaign. Drawing on social identity theory and the scholarship on populist rhetoric and anti-LGBTQ politics, the article examines 46 interviews, press statements, public speeches, and op-eds by Orban. Using critical discourse analysis (CDA) and Wodak ´ ’s discourse-historical approach, it shows how the prime minister frames LGBTQ communities as an out-group that poses a threat to Hungarian values and way of living. Similar to the issue of immigration and existing anti-LGBTQ frames in other countries, Orban presents LGBTQ groups ´ within his well-established anti-Western narrative. In addition, he connects LGBTQ communities to other out-groups that have been portrayed as a threat for a long time. The study sheds new light on the linguistic strategies of Orban and shows how populist rhetoric and social categorization ´ complement each other in a political campaign.

The Illiberalism Studies Program studies the different faces of illiberal politics and thought in today’s world, taking into account the diversity of their cultural context, their intellectual genealogy, the sociology of their popular support, and their implications on the international scene.