Law, Love and Responsibility: A Note on Solidarity in EU Law

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapter


This paper argues that although solidarity was developed as a principle in EU law to enhance the unity and cooperation between the Member States, its viability at the transnational level remains ultimately a function of its efficacy at the micro level of EU citizens. The question at the core of this inquiry concerns, therefore, how micro and macro dimensions of solidarity are related to each other sociologically and what their relationship means for EU law and the EU’s integration policy. The paper begins by taking a closer look at how the notion of solidarity has been conceptualised within sociology and the sociology of law, before examining the role of solidarity in EU law and policy. It concludes by arguing that the crisis of solidarity must be reexamined in the context of the contradictory policies pursued by the EU which, on the one hand, promote social conflicts while, on the other hand, seek to stabilise social conditions by appealing to a European sense of solidarity. This turns the EU into a source of anxiety that generates a negative form of solidarity, one which is tribal in nature and lends itself easily to the populist tide of nationalism and fear that is currently sweeping across Europe.


  • Reza Banakar
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Law and Society


  • solidarity, EU law: EU-rätt, identity politics, Sociology of Law, Socio-Legal Research, Legal Philosophy, Xenophobia, Social integration, Human Rights
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFestskrift till Håkan Hydén
EditorsReza Banakar, Karl Dahlstrand, Lotti Ryberg Welander
Place of PublicationLund
PublisherJuristförlagen i Lund
ISBN (Print)9789154405756
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Publication categoryResearch

Total downloads

No data available

Related projects

Reza Banakar & Martin Joormann

Lund University, Social science faculty


Project: Research

Reza Banakar, Ann-Christine Hartzén, Eleni Karageorgiou & Andrea Iossa


Project: ResearchInternational collaboration, Interdisciplinary research

View all (2)