Struggles over legitimacy in the Eurozone crisis: Discursive legitimation strategies and their ideological underpinnings

Eero Vaara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article focuses on the discursive underpinnings of the legitimacy crisis that the Eurozone as a
transnational institution is facing. By adopting a critical discourse analysis (CDA) perspective, the
empirical analysis focuses on the media discussion in Finland. The analysis shows how discourses
of financial capitalism, humanism, nationalism and Europeanism played a central role in legitimation,
delegitimation and relegitimation. Furthermore, the analysis elaborates on the legitimation strategies
that were often used in the media texts: position-based authorizations involving institutionalized
authorities and ‘voices of the common man’, knowledge-based authorizations focusing on economic
expertise, rationalizations concentrating on economic arguments, moral evaluations based on
unfairness used especially for delegitimation, mythopoiesis involving alternative future scenarios
and cosmology used to construct inevitability. By so doing, this study adds to our understanding of
the discursive and ideological underpinnings of the social, political and financial crisis in Greece and
other European countries and contributes to research on discursive legitimation more generally.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalDiscourse and Society
Volume25
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)500-518
Number of pages19
ISSN0957-9265
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 07.07.2014
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed

Keywords

  • 513 Law
  • 512 Business and Management
  • KOTA2014

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