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Religious intolerance and Euroscepticism

Hobolt, Sara, Van der Brug, Wouter, De Vreese, Claes H., Boomgaarden, Hajo G. and Hinrichsen, Malte C. (2011) Religious intolerance and Euroscepticism. European Union Politics, 12 (3). pp. 359-379. ISSN 1465-1165

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Research on Euroscepticism focuses increasingly on the role of group identities: national identities and attitudes towards multiculturalism. Yet hardly any attention has been paid to the way in which religious intolerance shapes Euroscepticism. We argue that religious intolerance influences not only diffuse Euroscepticism, but also more specifically opposition to enlargement of the European Union with Turkey. To examine the relationship between religious intolerance and Euroscepticism, this article analyses unique data from two representative surveys conducted in Ireland and the Netherlands. Our findings show that religious intolerance is indeed a powerful determinant of attitudes towards the European Union and that it particularly shapes people’s attitudes towards future Turkish enlargement. This study therefore contributes to the literature by demonstrating that social identities are strong determinants of Euroscepticism.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2011 The Authors
Library of Congress subject classification: J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
Sets: Departments > European Institute
Date Deposited: 29 Feb 2012 10:15

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