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The Unfinished Democratization of Europe$
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Erik O. Eriksen

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199572519

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199572519.001.0001

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The Quest for Democratization

The Quest for Democratization

(p.21) 2 The Quest for Democratization
The Unfinished Democratization of Europe

Erik O. Eriksen

Oxford University Press

This chapter first briefly addresses the legitimation problems of the Union and the concept of legitimacy. What does it mean and what are the implications for the political theory of the Union? On the basis of the contention that citizens must be offered justification for the exercise of political power that has convincing force in light of standards that are accessible to them, a distinction is made between democracy as a legitimation principle and as an organizational principle. The first gives rise to a deliberative concept of democracy, while the latter points us to some institutional prerequisites that constitute the yardstick for addressing the actual democratic deficits of the Union.

Keywords:   European Union, legitimacy, democracy as legitimation principle, democracy as organizational principle, democratic deficit, public reason, justification of domination

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