Globalization, demand of sense and enemization of the other: A psychocultural analysis of European societies’ sociopolitical crisis

Sergio Salvatore, Terri Mannani, Evrinomi Avdi, Fiorella Battaglia, Marco Cremaschi, Viviana Fini, Guglielmo Forges Davanzati, Irini Kadianaki, Anna Krasteva, Katrin Kullasepp, Anastassios Matsopoulos, Martin Mølholm, Rozlyn Redd, Alessia Rochira, Federico Russo, Alfonso Santarpia, Gordon Sammut, Antonella Valmorbida, Giuseppe Alessandro Veltri

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The paper outlines a cultural–psychological interpretation of the current European societies’ socio-institutional crisis. To this end, preliminarily, the cultural psychological view of social behaviour is outlined, focusing on the idea that socio-political choices depend on how people make sense of their world. Second, the paper provides an interpretation of the current socio-political European scenario of crisis, based on the main results of a recent study that has mapped the cultural dynamics underpinning some European countries. The interpretation focuses on two complementary facets: on the one hand, the lack of symbolic resources (defined: semiotic capital) enabling people to perceive the collective dimension of life as a lived, subjectively relevant fact of experience; on the other hand, the relevance of a cultural form (defined: paranoid belongingness) that channels a trajectory of sensemaking consisting of the affective connotation of otherness in terms of threat and enemy. Third, the paper deepens the interplay between these cultural dynamics and the social, political and economic conditions that may have been triggered by them. In that perspective, the function of semiotic regulation played by the enemization of the other is highlighted. The conclu- sive part of the work is devoted to discuss implications the analysis suggests for policy makers.
Translated title of the contributionGlobalisering, mening og fjendtliggørelsen af Den Anden,. En kulturel-psykologisk analyse af Europæiske samfunds sociopolitiske krise
Original languageEnglish
JournalCulture & Psychology
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)345-374
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019

Cite this