As an outcome of a five-year international research project “RECON – Reconstituting democracy in Europe”, this volume presents country case studies of Central and East European countries and comparative findings from research on the transformation of collective identities in Central and Eastern Europe under the conditions of an enlarging Europe. The main aim of the present publication is to show how the emerging collective European identity is correlated with the processes of democratization and Europeanization. The underlying assumption is that the EU enlargement process and its democratization projects often clash with nationalist and cosmopolitan concepts of identities. Relying on a large number of primary and secondary data and fieldwork research from Central and Eastern Europe, as well as by the use of quantitative and qualitative methodology (and an innovative Q-method), the chapters collected in this volume raise questions about the relationship between identities and the ongoing transformation of democracy in Europe. In particular, they provide insights into the influence of Europeanization and globalization on national and regional identities; the existing and new links between democratization, EU accession, and the transformation of collective identities in CEE; the role of national elites, public, and the media in the identity transformation; and the salience of regional, national, supranational, and global components of collective identities in a newly enlarged Europe. Most importantly, the present publication presents collective identities as contested normatively and culturally loaded phenomena and their transformation as the combination of global, European, national, as well as regional processes.
Guasti, Petra, Jessie Hronešová, Zdenka Mansfeldová (eds.). 2011. The Nexus between Democracy, Collective Identity Formation, and EU Enlargement. Praha: Sociologický ústav AV ČR, v.v.i. 193 s. ISBN 978-80-7330-198-9.