A specter is haunting the world again: populism. For many scholars, we have been witnessing the resurgence of populism in the world. From Latin America to the U.S. and Europe, populism has become increasingly powerful in the political arena. Despite the fact that populism has become one of the most intensely discussed subjects of research in political science, two major issues are still matters of debate: the definition of populism and its relation to democracy. This course aims to investigate the relationship between populism and democracy by focusing both on the theoretical/conceptual discussions and on the empirical cases of contemporary populist movements. The course starts by looking in depth to different theories of populism and democracy. What is the meaning of populism? What are the limits of populism as a concept in understanding current political issues? Is populism a danger or a corrective to democracy? In its second part, the course discusses contemporary cases. The primary cases are Turkey, Hungary, Poland, Austria, and Germany. The course, however, will also bring France, Greece, Spain, the US, and Venezuela into discussion as secondary cases.