The Reverse Wave in Europeanization in East-Central Europe: The European Disintegration at the Eastern Semi-periphery

Attila Agh

There has been a consent about the entry of "polycrisis" in the EU due to the aftermath of global crisis combined with the refugee crisis. The danger of the "De-Europeanization and European Disintegration" has been clearly identified, but the approaches from the Core and the Periphery have differed a lot both at the political level of governments and the theoretical level of scholars. The Southern and Eastern periphery have also been concerned by the polycrisis in a rather different way, since the Southern states have been longer and deeper integrated into the EU (e.g. the Eurozone), whereas the Eastern states have suffered from the global crisis right after their own "post-accession crisis". Therefore, the NMS have developed a special approach to this dual crisis, first of all the East- Central European (ECE) states that have turned actively against the EU mainstream crisis management, especially in the case of refugee crisis. Thus, this paper deals with the EU crisis from an ECE approach in general and with the ensuing special ECE crisis in particular. It deals first with the "new populism" that has been the current challenge to the European integration and has a global appearance with markedly special forms within the EU, especially along the Core-Periphery Divide. Second, it analyses the roll-back of Europeanization in ECE as the De-Europeanization and De-Democratization (deconsolidation) in general and the "spillback" effects or negative externalities, reinforcing the distortion of the ECE democratization in particular. The paper relies on the large databases of the ranking institutions - like Bertelsmann, EIU, Freedom House and WEF - and tries to cover the current literature on the "Explosion of Populism" in the EU and ECE.

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