Critique & Humanism

Bulgaria

Even the staunchest advocates of Turkey’s EU accession must consider alternatives to full membership. Yet what does “Plan B” – or “privileged partnership” – entail? If the enticement of full Union membership is removed, can the EU achieve its goals in Turkey, namely democratization and human rights reforms? This question is made all the more pressing by a renewed perception in Arab countries of “Ottoman” Turkey’s belonging in the global Muslim community together with a surge of anti-western feeling, writes Claus Leggewie.

Approaches to migration often fall into one of two camps: anti-neoliberal hostility or euphoria at “flows”. Yet the “new mobility” implies new freedoms as well as new privations. Researching the biographies of Bulgarian migrants, Ivaylo Ditchev finds that the horizon of departure has become a basic dimension of the world. Mobility, he writes, will need to be taken more seriously in the anthropology of citizenship.

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Populist movements are a threat not because they raise the issue of direct democracy, but because they advocate nationalist mobilisation based on xenophobia, writes Antony Todorov. Given the failure of the leftist projects of the twentieth century, it is telling that far-right populism is more anti-democratic in the new democracies of central and eastern Europe than in western Europe. Is populism identical to the crisis of democracy or rather a symptom of it?