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Alternatives to NeoliberalismTowards Equality and Democracy$
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Bryn Jones and Mike O'Donnell

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781447331148

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447331148.001.0001

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The European Union and the UK: neoliberalism, nationalist populism, or a cry for democracy?

The European Union and the UK: neoliberalism, nationalist populism, or a cry for democracy?

Chapter:
(p.117) Six The European Union and the UK: neoliberalism, nationalist populism, or a cry for democracy?
Source:
Alternatives to Neoliberalism
Author(s):

Bryn Jones

Mike O’Donnell

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447331148.003.0007

The UK referendum result has thrown several of the assumptions of the neoliberal order into disarray. This chapter traces opposition to the EU back to its retreat from social regulation of its markets to a stricter neoliberal framework. It examines key features of the ‘Brexit’ vote in the referendum and the likely scenarios for an ‘independent’ UK. Contrary to some popular interpretations it argues that the vote does not express a widespread nationalist populism amongst the working classes. However, the outcome seems likely to favour a renewal of neoliberal trade and de-regulation outside the protective institutions of the EU.

Keywords:   Brexit, European Union, populism, referendum, social regulation, working class

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