Critical Europeans in an Age of Crisis: Irish and Portuguese Protesters’ EU Perceptions*

Madelaine Moore, Silke Trommer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article examines Irish and Portuguese protesters' perceptions of the EU in the decade since the European debt crisis. Building on EU politics, social movement and protest literatures, we ask how domestic protesters in both countries perceive the EU during its age of crisis protest timescape. We find that critical Europeanism, which rejects technocratic and neoliberal Europe and works towards an alternative, social Europe, has travelled beyond austerity/bailout protests into women's rights and housing protests in both countries, although to varying degrees. We suggest that the expansion of critical European perceptions in these traditionally Europhile member states forms part of the social and political legacy of the European debt crisis, but also contributes to the continued Europeanization of the European social movement space. It could have positive impacts on the EU's legitimacy deficit if EU institutions engaged meaningfully with critical European voices.

Original languageEnglish
Article number0
JournalJournal of Common Market Studies
Early online date18 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - 18 Aug 2020


  • EU
  • Ireland
  • Portugal
  • austerity
  • crisis
  • protest


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