Fantasies of subjugation: a discourse theoretical account of British policy on the European Union


Hawkins, Benjamin; (2014) Fantasies of subjugation: a discourse theoretical account of British policy on the European Union. Critical Policy Studies. pp. 1-19. ISSN 1946-0171 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/19460171.2014.951666

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Abstract

The decision by the UK government to hold a referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union (EU) marks an important development in policy towards the EU. Policy changes of this kind must be understood in the historical and political context in which they occur. This includes the framing of the policy issues within public discourse. In the UK, policies are formed in a discursive environment which is overwhelmingly hostile towards the EU. Debates are structured by a predominantly Euroskeptic discourse which emphasizes the UK’s separation and heterogeneity from the rest of the EU. Drawing on the logics of critical explanation, this article examines the structure and affective power of Euroskeptic discourses which dictate the terms of the EU debate. It presents a case study of the recent EU treaty revision process, culminating in the Treaty of Lisbon. In so doing, it enables a deeper understanding of recent policy developments.

Item Type: Article
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Public Health and Policy
Faculty of Public Health and Policy > Dept of Global Health and Development
URI: http://researchonline.lshtm.ac.uk/id/eprint/2130254

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