Historical Social Research

Inken Rommel: “We Are the People.” Refugee-’Crisis,’ and the Drag-Effects of Social Habitus in German Society. [Abstract]

In Germany, like in other European countries, one can observe the recent rise of right wing movements, referred to by some authors as the New Right (Bruns, Glösel and Strobel 2016). During the last years those tendencies were able to create and establish closed pictures of national identities, and promote these quite successfully through populist discourses (Speit 2016, 314). Since the so called ‘Refugee-crisis,’ they gained even more approval throughout German society and established the ‘Muslim’ as contrary to German habitus. On the contrary there are also civic movements that show explicit solidarity with refugees and offer their help to the newcomers, which was labelled as ‘welcome-culture.’ Since this polarisation of attitudes towards refugees is so obvious, the question that is addressed in this article concerns the motives and structural circumstances of this division of orientations throughout German society, and hints at questions of identity and habitus.

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