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Explaining Opposition to Turkish Membership of the EU

[journal article]

McLaren, Lauren M.

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Abstract This article examines EU citizen attitudes to Turkey's bid to join the EU. The key theoretical constructs investigated to explain opposition to Turkey's EU membership are related to rational economic self-interest and group-level interests and concerns. The findings indicate that the former are irrelevant for distinguishing between opponents and supporters of Turkey's candidacy, while the latter do provide fairly powerful explanations for opposition to Turkish EU membership. However, because these factors do not completely explain overall levels of hostility to Turkey's candidacy, context is also introduced, particularly the threatening context provided by Turkish migration. The findings indicate that migration from Turkey to some of the EU member states has combined with feelings of group protectiveness to produce widespread animosity to Turkey's entry into the EU.
Classification Political Process, Elections, Political Sociology, Political Culture; European Politics
Free Keywords enlargement; Europe; multi-level modelling; public opinion; threat; Turkey;
Document language English
Publication Year 2007
Page/Pages p. 251-278
Journal European Union Politics, 8 (2007) 2
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)