Yiftach Har-gil

Provocation in Politics: Tōkyō’s Yasukuni Shrine and Jerusalem’s Temple Mount.

In the last few decades politicians have made controversial pilgrimages to Tokyo’s Yasukuni Shrine and Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, presenting repeated political challenges in their respective countries and regions, as well as in the context of their respective political systems and international relations dynamics.

My research looks at the framing of the two case studies as “provocation”, as the term presents two important methodological dilemmas. First is that within the sphere of political science the term “provocation” has been poorly defined, if at all, which is surprising considering its frequency of use. Second, it is not entirely clear who the provocation is aimed at, with many different surprising answers. The solutions provided by my research would be to first attempt a definition of provocation in the relevant context, and then to place said framing within the discourse of surging national-populism within liberal democracies in the current era.

Methodologically, my research involves deriving a serviceable definition for national-populism and current trends in right wing politics, striving to explain the phenomenon rather than provide a be-all and end-all answer to the question of what “populism” is – a question that is in my view impossible to answer. Working with this definition my research will attempt to engage with the actors involved, as well as enabling and observing actors, mostly from the political-scape but also from the media-scape, in order to reach a deeper understanding of the framing of “provocation” within contemporary political culture.


Educational Background
  • The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, B.A. Asian Studies, 2015
  • Heidelberg University, M.A. Transcultural Studies, 2018
  • Ph.D. candidate at Heidelberg University since August 2019


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Letzte Änderung: 04.03.2024
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