Post for 10/4

  1. Judt states on page seven, “as a substitute for the defunct ambitions of Europe’s ideological past, there emerged… the European model.” This describes the modern European state, in which Liberal dDemocracy has been combined with Social Democratic ideas about the welfare state. This thematic shape is seen by Judt as a sort of compromise which came out of the failure of Fascism, which was discredited by its defeat and the destruction it wrought in the Second World War, and the failure of Soviet Communism, which was apparent as the Berlin Wall fell in 1989. These ideologies were deeply attached to the overarching narrative proposed by the European right and left wing, only a sort of compromise seemed to remain as an option for political organization.
  2. Judt describes the political topography of the New Europe as much more settled than in previous centuries. He mentions that Neo-Gaulists in France and Swedish Social Democrats had/have more in common in their practical goals and beliefs with each other than with their ideological forefathers. He also points out that public intellectuals, once a central aspect of European political organization, had fallen to the wayside in relevance. He reiterates that with Fascism and Communism discredited and the idea of War itself unthinkable, it was difficult for intellectual moralists to find any cause to rail against or for. This produced a fairly stable political environment.
  3. Judt thinks that in an age in which terrorism is one of the main concern for European citizens, the presence of the state as a peacekeeping force cannot be forgotten, and therefore Europe is unlikely to become truly post national unless some alternative can be found for the purpose of peacekeeping. In the political posters documented inĀ The World Transformed, one can see how the fear of terrorism – specifically Islamic terrorism, despite that fact that white supremacist terror is more widespread and deadly, though that is a subject for another time – is something that truly does terrify the European public. The antidote to this fear for those who are the most affected by it so far has been nationalism, and the feeling that the in-group and the state will protect them. With this in mind, the nation-state is unlikely to completely disappear from Europe anytime soon.

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