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1. Cross-National Values in Europe Today: Facts andExplanations

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Chapter Summary

On the 24th of March 1976, Alexander Solzhenitsyn delivered his speech Warning to the Western World on BBC Radio. He raised the question of whether Europeans are still willing to preserve and develop their own identity; not as a fortress, globalization makes that impossible, but as a reservoir of human values that can stimulate and help to build a global humanism. This speech inspired an international and multidisciplinary group of academics to debate the cultural predicament of Europe. The European Values Study (EVS) provides valid and reliable information on how Europeans felt and thought about European identity and the underlying value systems of their countries. Over time the goals of the EVS shifted from providing policymakers with accurate information to addressing the social scientific forum, and from description and ad hoc interpretations of the research findings to empirical tests of theoretical explanations.

Keywords: Alexander Solzhenitsyn; European Values Study (EVS); global humanism



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