A Trickster in Downing Street

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper attempts to explore aspects of the apparently eccentric and bizarre performance of a recent right-wing populist British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. It suggests that to understand such a figure it is necessary to supplement more traditional approaches from historical and structural sociology with the interpretative tools of political anthropology around the conception of the trickster/clown figure as they have been developed by Horvath (1997, 2019) and Szakolczai (2017, 2022), This suggests that a sociology of power needs to recognise the theatricalised and performative aspects of the social processes of modernity and acknowledge the benefits of drawing on the resources of the humanities for their exploration.
Original languageEnglish
Article number0000-0002-6832-1121
Pages (from-to)25-35
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Political Anthropology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jul 2023


  • Boris Johnson; Trickster/Clown; Political Anthropology; Theatricalised Modernity; Agnes Horvath; Arpad Szakolczai


Dive into the research topics of 'A Trickster in Downing Street'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this