Who's Dominating Whom? The Perception of (EU) Dominance in the Debate on the Future of Europe

60 Pages Posted: 13 Dec 2022

See all articles by Karolina Czerska-Shaw

Karolina Czerska-Shaw

Jagiellonian University in Krakow

Magdalena Gora

Jagiellonian University in Krakow

Kinga Sekerdej

AGH University of Science and Technology

Natasza Styczynska

Jagiellonian University in Krakow

Marta Warat

Jagiellonian University in Krakow

Katarzyna Zielinska

Jagiellonian University in Krakow

Date Written: December 7, 2022

Abstract

In the decades of crises that have defined the European Union, debates on the future of European integration, as well as its democratic legitimation, have taken complex and often contradictory forms. In these discourses, one can detect both the image of an impotent Union unable to respond to threats, and simultaneously one that is omnipotent and exerting its dominance over national actors. Beyond this discursive dichotomy, it is of particular importance to capture the areas of institutional relationships that are perceived as unjust, problematic, unaccountable, and imposing. In our paper, we focus on perspectives from both Eurosceptic and pro-European integration actors. Specifically, we focus on civil society organisations participating in ongoing Future of Europe (FoE) debates. On one hand, we analyse the articulations of populist, Eurosceptic actors and anti-intellectual movements. On the other, we compare them to typically pro-integration organisations active in the field of migration, gender-equality, and faith-based issues. Through qualitative content analysis, the paper firstly investigates what is perceived as dominance in its institutional dimension, such as in references to EU institutions and policies. Secondly, we detect the ways in which the perception of dominance is utilised by these actors in the (de)legitimisation of European integration. Lastly, we focus on the ideational/normative dimension embodied in references to values, non-material resources and norms. This allows us to map the perceptions of symbolic dominance within the EU system and the actors who raise these aspects. Additionally, it allows for the observation of where the problematic forms of dominance are located and enables us to zoom in on how these are perceived as well as what solutions are offered. The aim is to deepen our understanding of where actors perceive and locate unjustified exercises of power, which may shed light on how the functioning of democracy within the EU is assessed by an ideologically diverse set of actors.

Keywords: Civil Society, Domination, EU, European Integration, Future of Europe

Suggested Citation

Czerska-Shaw, Karolina and Gora, Magdalena and Sekerdej, Kinga and Styczynska, Natasza and Warat, Marta and Zielinska, Katarzyna, Who's Dominating Whom? The Perception of (EU) Dominance in the Debate on the Future of Europe (December 7, 2022). EU3D Research Paper No. 26, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4296120 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4296120

Karolina Czerska-Shaw (Contact Author)

Jagiellonian University in Krakow ( email )

Collegium Novum
ul. Gołębia 24
Kraków, 31-007
Poland

Magdalena Gora

Jagiellonian University in Krakow ( email )

Collegium Novum
ul. Gołębia 24
Kraków, 31-007
Poland

Kinga Sekerdej

AGH University of Science and Technology ( email )

al. Mickiewicza 30,
Kraków, 30-059

Natasza Styczynska

Jagiellonian University in Krakow ( email )

Collegium Novum
ul. Gołębia 24
Kraków, 31-007
Poland

Marta Warat

Jagiellonian University in Krakow ( email )

Collegium Novum
ul. Gołębia 24
Kraków, 31-007
Poland

Katarzyna Zielinska

Jagiellonian University in Krakow ( email )

Collegium Novum
ul. Gołębia 24
Kraków, 31-007
Poland

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