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What Determines Citizens' Normative Conception Of Their Civic Duties

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Chapter Summary

This chapter asks two empirical questions. The first descriptive question asks how citizens in contemporary European democracies define their social and political obligations. In dealing with this question, it begins by comparing the mass publics in various European democracies in terms of the strength of their allegiance to the aforementioned social and political obligations. The second question is explanatory. The issue addressed is which factors impact upon the strength of citizens' allegiances to various civic obligations. In this analysis, the chapter looks into explanatory factors at two levels: individual factors and national factors. It also develops some hypotheses, which helps us identify potentially important factors from both levels of analysis and, provides theoretically plausible expectations regarding the possible impact of these factors. The chapter concentrates on civic obligations; to be more precise it deals with citizen's normative conceptions about the obligations inherent in their role as citizen.

Keywords:civic obligations; contemporary European democracies; normative conception; political obligations; social obligations



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