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Uses and Abuses of the Past in Legitimization of the Present. Central European Discourse on Collective Identity in Times of Contemporary Refugee Crisis.

Grzegorz Pozarlik

Analogical reasoning strikes again in Central European contemporary discourse on collective identity in times of refugee crisis. This paper suggest that policy makers and opinion leaders in Central Europe use and often abuse the past in legitimizing policy making on contemporary refugee crisis. The role of analogical reasoning in extraordinary policy situations had been already acknowledged to be an important explanatory strategy in social science. David Patrick Houghton's study on the U.S. foreign policy making in the Iranian hostage crisis is an insightful case in point . Still, relatively little attention is paid to this explanatory strategy in contemporary policy analyses touching upon political and social reactions in Central Europe to current refugee crisis. In what follows I intend to explain why does history matter in justifying current Central European policy making on refugee crisis? In doing so I will elaborate on uses and abuses of modern European history in Central European public debate on implications of refugee crisis on collective identity construction.

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