Essays

The nationalist reaction to the refugee crisis of 2015 casts a shadow over the opening of the House of European History in Brussels this month. Will the new institution’s role be merely to display the vestiges of a common European cultural heritage?

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‘It was as if the notoriously elusive European identity had finally come into existence, but as a nightmarish vision.’ Claudia Ciobanu, a Romanian living in Poland, describes the dilemmas and mixed feelings of ‘the voluntary migrant’, caught between revulsion at xenophobia and sympathy for the ‘losers of transition’.

Emmanuel Macron has won over the electorate with his vision of a ‘new republic’. However, the honeymoon will be brief unless he follows up on his campaign promise to restore social justice. France’s anti-globalist opposition is still split: but for how long?

Gender has long been applied as a measure of social justice, economic equality and political openness. In the current constellation, however, it is also being deployed as a weapon, wielded by illiberal politicians to attack human rights and the fundamental values of an open, democratic society.

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The ‘community of communities’ approach is responsible for the emergence of a tribal sense of identity among third-generation Muslims in Europe, argues Kenan Malik. The reaction to diversity must be political dialogue rather than indifference disguised as respect.

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Exemplary urban renewal project or just another hipster hang out? A historical market hall in Berlin now hosting regular farmers’ markets enjoys massive popularity. Except among the locals, that is.

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