European Demos, Citizenship and Migrants in a Globalized World: Some Critical Reflections from a Habermasian Perspective

  • Spiros Makris
Part of the Europe in a Global Context book series (EGC)


Unquestionably, the fact that the 2014 European Union (EU) parliamentary election led to the most Eurosceptic parliament in the long history of the institution has brought to the fore a series of approaches to address the possible effects of the powerful rise of Euroscepticism on the progress of European political integration as a whole. It is worth noting that roughly a quarter of all seats went to Eurosceptic political parties or protest parties. Bearing in mind that the renewed and strengthened Euroscepticism during the last EU electoral campaign saw the formation of a new Eurosceptic political group in the European parliament, paradoxically called “Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy” (EFDD), we could argue that this important new electoral data regarding the EU’s political future in a globalized era has without a doubt created vivid discussion and speculation around the EU’s institutional, ideological and legislative procedure in the twenty-first century, especially on crucial topics concerning political freedoms (e.g., freedom of speech, freedom of movement, etc.) or migrants and refugees’ human rights (Nathan 2013). Additionally, it is more than evident that Brexit, Donald Trump’s election in the USA (2016) and the increasing power of so-called right-wing populism across Europe in recent years show us clearly that what the well-known German social philosopher Jürgen Habermas has explicitly defined as a European public sphere or a European demos (Habermas 2001a) is in serious doubt or even real danger, especially from the specific sector of European political elites or electorates that would like to return to the historical era of protectionism and aggressive or chauvinistic nationalism, although at the same time there are many positive signs relating to hospitality (Makris 2015a: 177–194), liberal cosmopolitanism and globalization, as discussed by Marco Caselli and Guia Gilardoni in Chap.  1.


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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Spiros Makris
    • 1
  1. 1.University of MacedoniaThessalonikiGreece

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