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Democracy in Europe after the elections

Kaldor, Mary (2014) Democracy in Europe after the elections. Euro Crisis in the Press (27 May 2014). Website.

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Nationalism is a way of deflecting discontent towards a convenient scapegoat, an ‘other’ – the immigrant or Europe. It is a way of mobilising political support while avoiding any commitment to address the underlying causes of discontent; that’s why it is often described as populism. Xenophobia and euroscepticism can never offer any constructive solutions. On the contrary the more the nationalist rhetoric succeeds the more our problems multiply and the more we blame the ‘other’. There is a long and alarming history of deflecting democratic demands by the appeal of nationalism, of which the First World War is perhaps the most poignant reminder. In more recent times it is worth noting that sectarian conflicts in both Bosnia and Syria were and are ways of responding to, diverting and suppressing democratic movements. In Ukraine, what was a nation-wide protest against corruption and for human rights is rapidly being reframed as a conflict between ‘eastern’ Russians and ‘European’ Ukrainians.

Item Type: Online resource (Website)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2014 The Author(s)
Divisions: International Development
Conflict and Civil Society
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
Date Deposited: 22 May 2017 10:43
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 23:23

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