Popular Support for Democracy in Unified Germany

Critical Democrats

  • Ross Campbell

Part of the New Perspectives in German Political Studies book series (NPG)

Table of contents

About this book


This book examines attitudes towards democracy in the Federal Republic of Germany. By drawing on extensive survey evidence, it charts Germans’ changing views of the political system prior to and following unification. The study examines four aspects of the political system: how it functions overall, attitudes towards the Basic Law, trust in representative institutions, and views of the European Union. Rather than accepting or rejecting democracy, the research shows how Germans merge shades of criticism and support. In addition, it pinpoints the factors that condition support, showing how it is influenced by durable and changeable stimuli. Overall, the findings challenge suggestions of a crisis of democracy but they also demonstrate that support is particularly low towards aspects of the European Union. This book appeals to readers interested in public opinion and democracy in Germany, along with those interested in the changing relationship between citizens and the state.

Ross Campbell is Senior Lecturer in Political Science at the University of the West of Scotland, Paisley, UK. His research focuses on the politics of the Federal Republic of Germany and he has published widely on attitudes towards democracy, electoral behaviour and political participation. His recent articles have appeared in the European Journal of Political Research, International Political Science Review, German Politics and Contemporary Politics. He is a member of the editorial board for the Journal for Contemporary European Studies.


ALLBUS popular support in Germany specific and diffuse support postmaterialism social trust in Germany east-west differences political change satisfaction with democracy evaluations of socialism affective support constitutional patriotism civil society trust in democratic institutions democratic reform democratic deficit German trust in the EU integration social structure attitudes towards democracy

Authors and affiliations

  • Ross Campbell
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Media, Culture and SocietyUniversity of the West of ScotlandPaisleyUK

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