News Details
15 March 2016

Dr Andrea Teti Gives EU Democracy Promotion Seminar at Macquarie University, Sydney

Dr Andrea Teti gives Seminar at Macquarie University Sydney discussing EU Democracy Promotion after the Arab Spring.

"Democracy Without Social Justice"

Tuesday 15 March: Macquarie University


Joint seminar

Hosted by the 
Department of Memory, History, Politics & International Relations

and the
Centre for Middle East and North African Studies,
Macquarie University
Sponsor: Council for Australian-Arab Relations (CAAR), Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)

Abstract: “This presentation examines key policy documents on EU democracy promotion after the Arab Spring, arguing that despite calls for a paradigm shift in the way the EU approaches democracy assistance – particularly in its relation to core foreign policy priorities: security, stability, development –, the conceptual structure of these documents presents a substantively (neo)liberal model for both development and democratization. The talk will show that, first, democracy is understood as involving a balance between state and civil society; second, while the indivisibility of human rights  is proclaimed, civil and political rights (and certain categories of these, at that) far outweigh social and economic rights in their importance vis-à-vis democracy in EU policy; third, that the role of socio-economic rights progressively is being marginalised  as individual policy documents develop; fourth, that conceptions of civil society in these documents marginalise trade unions and other actors focusing on socio-economic rights; and fifth, that socio-economic issues gradually are being redefined as matters  not of rights but of trade and aid. This fundamentally reverses the moral economy of obligations attached to socio-economic issues: from a focus on would-be democratising populations as right-bearers to their reconceptualization as morally and financially indebted recipients of charity.”


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