Has there been a European Public Discourse on the Euro Crisis? A Content Analysis of German and Spanish Newspaper Editorials
News from Sep 29, 2015
Daniel Drewski (2015): Has there been a European Public Discourse on the Euro Crisis? A Content Analysis of German and Spanish Newspaper Editorials. Javnost – The Public 22(3): 264-282.
According to some observers, the Euro crisis could have provoked a broad politicisation of European issues and the emergence of a cross-border European public discourse, paving the way for a democratic deepening of the European Union. This article examines whether there has been such a European public discourse on the Euro crisis. Based on the academic literature and drawing on cleavage theory, I define the following indicators of a European public discourse: first, the same issues have to be discussed at the same time in various EU member states; and second, the interpretations of and opinions on these issues should reflect a transnational ideological cleavage that cuts across national borders instead of an international cleavage between countries. A systematic content analysis of editorials in centre-left and centre-right quality newspapers in Germany (Eurozone core) and Spain (Eurozone periphery) shows that these countries’ public discourses on the Euro crisis have not met these requirements for a European public discourse. I found significant country differences between Germany and Spain, while a cross-cutting transnational cleavage between the centre-left and centre-right did not play a significant role. These results suggest that there has not been a European public discourse on the Euro crisis.