The race equality directive: ‘Differentiated’ or ‘differential’ Europeanization

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Series Details Vol.12, No.4, September 2010, p543-566
Publication Date September 2010
ISSN 1461-6696
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This article examines the Race Equality Directive (RED) and its transposition in the context of a new European Union (EU) member state, Baltic Lithuania. Taking this post-communist society as a case study, it is suggested that while formal legislative compliance with the RED has been broadly attained, transposed anti-discrimination legislation and national policy implementation initiatives may not adequately take into account societal attitudes and norms. The historical legacy of Soviet times, the contemporary post-communist experience, and the current economic crisis have resulted in a fragile national identity and a propensity towards populist and even xenophobic responses to uncertainty. These factors are explored in terms of their potential for undermining the objectives of EU-derived legislation designed to promote racial and ethnic tolerance. The article concludes that while a 'differentiated' Europeanisation has not occurred in formal terms, the possibility exists of 'differential' Europeanisation emerging in post-communist new EU member states such as Lithuania.

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