Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Reinventing Social Solidarity Across Europe$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Marion Ellison

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9781847427274

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847427274.001.0001

Show Summary Details

Embedding European identity in context: changing social solidarities in Europe

Embedding European identity in context: changing social solidarities in Europe

(p.83) Six Embedding European identity in context: changing social solidarities in Europe
Reinventing Social Solidarity Across Europe

Jim Barry

Elisabeth Berg

John Chandler

Policy Press

This chapter argues that discussions of ‘solidarity’ in a European context tend to be based on a top-down conception in which it is seen as embedded in fiscal and social policies designed to provide a minimum level of social security to all European citizens. At the same time, it is widely recognized that the pervasive influence of neo-liberalism has rendered such policies problematic and undermined their legitimacy. However, as Clarke has argued, neo-liberalism is ‘enacted in different hybridized formations – in different national politics, in different regional contexts’. The chapter focuses on one source of opposition to neo-liberal reforms in the vibrant and contentious energies of social movements. Such social movement activity does not just occur on the streets or in political forums external to the welfare state – it also occurs within the state apparatus, as welfare professionals sometimes act in concert with others on the basis of values and ideas forged through their broader social movement participation. This analysis suggests that instead of focusing on ‘top-down’ conceptions of solidarity, we should begin to look at the forms taken by such ‘bottom-up’ kinds of solidarity.

Keywords:   solidarity, social movements, Europe, neo-liberalism, welfare

Policy Press Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.