Famous women yearn for Putin, and other unlikely tales:
Glamorizing right-wing populist actors in the Bulgarian editions of Cosmopolitan and Elle
TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY, USA
ABSTRACT: This analysis identifies the dominant media frames in the coverage of four right-wing populist actors - Vladimir Putin, Donald Trump, Silvio Berlusconi, and Roman Abramovich - by the Bulgarian editions of Elle and Cosmopolitan. Although the political platforms of these men are not, in fact, anti-establishment, which is the core characteristic of populism, they are referred to as populist actors because of their use of populist tools and discourses to practice so-called “neo-populism from above.” The four men were framed as: (a) carriers of a “golden touch”; (b) sources of profound/problematic wisdom; and (c) admirable collectors of “trophy” women. The findings are discussed as illustrative of the tabloidization of U.S. women’s magazine brands in the post-communist context of Bulgaria.