Reference : Eurabian Nights: From Narrative Identities to Imagined Communities
Scientific congresses and symposiums : Unpublished conference/Abstract
Law, criminology & political science : Political science, public administration & international relations
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Sociology & social sciences
Eurabian Nights: From Narrative Identities to Imagined Communities
Claisse, Frédéric mailto [Université de Liège - ULiège > Département de science politique > Gouvernance et société >]
7th ECPR General Conference
4-7 septembre 2013
European Consortium For Political Research
[en] Narrative Identities ; Imagined Communities ; Conspiracy Theory ; Counter-jihad ; Eurabia
[en] Though the themes of ‘counter-jihad’ and ‘islamofascism’ contributed to somehow renew the far right discourse, it is arguable that the core structure of the underlying political narrative remained unchanged – ‘Muslims’ merely taking the place of Jews in the role of ‘enemies from within’, while Islam superseded communism as the major totalitarian threat to the Western world. Taken as a globalised narrative, counter-jihad discourse displays striking differences between its North American and European versions, the former emphasizing Islam as a rather external, terrorist threat, whereas the latter denounces it as a cultural peril, resulting from an alleged failure of multiculturalism both as a policy and as an ideology. The ‘Eurabia’ conspiracy theory often serves as the bedrock of these narratives: a deliberate, albeit covert policy framework set by European and Arab leaders in order to gradually establish a Muslim majority in Europe. Still, the question remains whether these new discursive entities function as pure ‘identity markers’ or reveal original, unprecedented forms of ‘imagined communities’ (B. Anderson). In this respect, the Eurabian scenario contrasts sharply with the traditional far right rhetoric of decline: as it sets a seemingly inescapable, dystopian horizon, it paradoxically presupposes the existence of an organized political community actually able to do something to prevent that dark future from happening. Through ‘heuristics of fear’ (H. Jonas), Eurabia aims at creating a community of politically aware individuals and empowering them for current and future struggles. In our paper, we propose to analyse such ‘imaginary institution’ of a counter-jihad society. Using controversy mapping tools to show the relation between actors of the movement, we will particularly focus on the blogging community and its notably prominent role in the spreading and structuring of the Eurabian dystopia.
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