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Session Overview
RS01_06a_P: (Un)Making Solidarities I
Thursday, 31/Aug/2017:
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Session Chair: Airi-Alina Allaste, Tallinn University
Location: PD.4.37
PANTEION University of Social & Political Sciences 136 Syggrou Avenue 17671 Athens, Greece Building: D, Level: 4.

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Citizens of the World: Globalization and Transnational Identity Formation

Yunus Kaya1, Nathan D Martin2

1Istanbul University, Turkey; 2Arizona State University

This study assesses if globalization has led to the adoption of transnational identities over national and regional ones. Utilizing multilevel modeling and the data from the last two waves of the World Value Surveys and the last wave of the European Value Studies, which were conducted between 2005 and 2014 in 105 countries covering more than 90 percent of the global population, it examines the country and individual level determinants of perceiving self as a world citizen. The results of the analyses reveal that higher levels of globalization at the country level, measured through the flows of capital, goods, information and people, and increasing income education and professional and managerial class status at the individual level are positively associated with self-identification as a world citizen. Therefore, this study joins the scholars and studies that point out to the asymmetrical and contradictory effects of the globalization process.

Promoting the urban social sustainability: environmental movements, social media and civic participation

Lucia D'Ambrosi, Vale Polci

University of Macerata, Italy

The new forms of relational nature, which nowadays often come up in real urban contexts and afterwards spread out in virtual no-places, or are an expression of “movements” created in the Internet (blogs and social networks), transform already existent models of sociality and create innovative social connections. Users who set such “digital connections” feel themselves protagonists of nets of personal relationships and links which give sociality, support, information, sense of belonging and social identity which they show in public places through new forms of expression (Wellman, 1997). The idea of place as a space where social interaction develops, a space border and source of sociality, becomes a space community, a no-place which is an expression of the social organisation (Meyrowitz, 1985). Such relational modalities don't exhaust themselves in a sum of practices and usual rituals but join with attitudes and behaviours meant to start profitable and constructive occasions of sociability as civic participation (D’Ambrosi, 2017).

Starting from this perspective, research aims to examine the new forms and practices of sociability fed in the public squares and which find continuity in virtual platforms; there is a particular reference to sharing of literary, cultural and political contents about civic participation and urban liveability and to its repercussions on social ground. The starting question of our research is to understand how the increasing availability of cultural experiences, through and outside the Net spaces, can influence the urban public places. We refer, for instance, to the “Transition Network”, a movement of communities coming together against the urban deterioration spread through the Web; it started from dialoguing modalities and confronting on certain topics, and it has stimulated the users to discuss directly and personally in the city square. This is an actual case of how even sharing literary and cultural contents can influence the process of creating a civic sense, investing different people with responsibility towards concrete actions and initiatives. Using a mixed methods approach and integrating quantitative and qualitative data analysis (like web survey, interviews, etc), the research aims observing already existing national and international forms of public participation, inside and outside the Net, in order to verify its effects on society related to environmental issues and places liveability.

Solidarity as a Form of Life – Normative Ideal and Empirical Problems of Solidarity

Bastian Ronge

Humboldt University Berlin, Germany

Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité were the famous keywords of the French Revolution. Modern philosophy reflected intensely on the concepts of freedom and equality, but neglected fraternity or rather solidarity. Hence, solidarity remained a ‘wishy-washy concept’ (Jaeggi 2001, 287) until today. In my presentation I would like to suggest conceptualizing solidarity as a form of life. That means: I will put forward the thesis that solidarity should be understood as a bundle of social practices, which pursue a particular goal and which are based on particular judgments about the (social) world. Solidarity as a form of life can be performed in two ways; as ‘lived solidarity’ within a social group or as ‘sympathetic solidarity’ with regard to other individuals or social groups. Both forms of solidarity aim at the same normative goal, namely to establish social relationships, in which people fulfill other’s needs and desires by fulfilling their own ones, i.e. social freedom. Both forms are based, however, on various moral judgments and imply different social practices. While ‘lived solidarity’ encompasses practices like ‘fighting together‘, ‘helping each other out‘, ‘avoiding hierarchies‘, ‘making decisions consensually‘, ‘performing sympathetic solidarity‘ etc. and is founded in having common moral judgements about the (social) world; ‘sympathetic solidarity’ (with other individuals or groups) entails practices like ‘supporting other individuals or groups in a material or nonmaterial way‘ and ‘risking something without payoff‘ and is based on sympathy, i.e. affirming the other’s way of acting and his or her moral judgements about the (social) world. Conceptualizing solidarity in this way allows to describe the normative ideal of solidarity as well as to identify the main empirical problem, which hinders the practical realization of this ideal. According to the given account, the normative ideal of solidarity consists in social freedom, i.e. to fulfill other’s needs and desires by fulfilling one own ones. This ideal binds us to perform sympathetic solidarity, that means to support those people, who fight for the realizing of their social freedom. We often fall short to do so, however, since the sympathetic interaction with those, who fight for their lived solidarity, is distorted. Hence, the question of how to realize the normative ideal of solidarity cannot be separated from the empirical and sociological question how political-affective discourses can be established, which increase sympathetic relations within our own social group as well as to other individuals and social groups.

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