Conflicting conceptualisations of ‘democracy’ in the German Bundestag during the anti-nuclear demonstrations, 1995-2001
Kaarkoski, M. (2018). Conflicting conceptualisations of ‘democracy’ in the German Bundestag during the anti-nuclear demonstrations, 1995-2001. Parliaments, Estates and Representation, 38(1), 121-133. https://doi.org/10.1080/02606755.2018.1428413
Published inParliaments, Estates and Representation
© 2018 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons License.
A vigorous anti-nuclear movement emerged in Germany in the mid 1990s, when spent nuclear fuel elements began to be transported to the interim storage facility in Gorleben, Lower Saxony. Resistance to nuclear transportation continued to grow in strength throughout the 1990s. The protests expressed people’s distrust and lack of confidence in political institutions and decision-making processes. In the German Bundestag, these events relating to Gorleben caused significant political struggles over the principles and meanings of German democracy. Parliamentarians voiced competing counterarguments about the legitimacy of these demonstrations, on the one hand, and the legitimacy of the nuclear energy policy of the federal government, on the other. Ideas about liberal democracy and the tradition of the 1968 generation and new social movements clashed in the Bundestag. By applying methods of conceptual analysis to parliamentary research, this article discusses conflicting conceptualisations of democracy in the German parliament. Analysis of political language enables discussions on competing ideas, attitudes and conceptions in policy-making. The Bundestag argued about democratic beliefs and values, which legitimated parliamentary policy-making. In particular, interpretations of violence in a democratic state, the principle of majority rule and the legitimacy of decision-making were explicitly debated in the German parliament. ...
PublisherTaylor & Francis
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Related funder(s)Academy of Finland
Funding program(s)Academy Project, AoF
Additional information about fundingThis research was supported by the Academy of Finland, project Supra- and Transnational Foreign Policy versus National Parliamentary Government, 1914–2014 [grant number 275589].
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons License.
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