Accepted Paper:

Defensive fantasies: discursive enactments of exclusion and identity in imagining Europe  
Jeffrey Murer (University of St. Andrews)

Paper long abstract:

"Europe for Europeans!" but which Europe and which Europeans? Across Europe new social and political movements claim that they are "fighting back" or working to "defend" the continent and its political, social and cultural practices. This paper explores the social and linguistic practices of exclusion that delimit the populations to be protected and mark those beyond the collective self, whose very presence is a threat. The paper discusses the interview responses of nearly one thousand young people (from 2009-2010) involved in extra-parliamentary, illiberal politics, with regard to their attitudes about social institutions, societal trust, and legitimate uses of violence. This analysis offers the opportunity to compare the discourses and positions of those who would expel unwelcome social elements, with the perceptions and experiences of those marginalized subjects who are their targets, each articulating a parallel critique of materialism and the need to re-establish community in the face of neo-liberal hyper-individualism.

Panel W011
The imagined Europe under siege