This study aims to understand the process of building Euroscepticism, resorting to the case of the Portuguese Communist Party (PCP) and its positioning towards a set of dimensions of the European project. Following the spatial representation of democracy proposed by Anthony Downs and his metaphorical conception of political space, a comparative analysis of the data regarding the positions of the party and the Portuguese electorate on the European Union (EU) is developed. It is concluded that the EU constituted a crucial dimension of the process of identity redefinition of the PCP after the fall of the USSR, having the party undergone, in light of the three main scales of measurement of Euroscepticism, a significant change in its position. This change would facilitate its participation, for the first time in the history of Portuguese democracy, in the XXI constitutional government led by the Socialist Party.
Keywords: Euroscepticism, Portuguese Communist Party, Party positioning, European Union
Luísa Godinho | Universidade Autónoma de Lisboa
Luísa Godinho has a PhD and DEA in Political Science at Université de Genève, Switzerland. Godinho is an Assistant Professor at the International Relations Department of the Autonomous University of Lisbon. Researcher at Observare, mainly interested in the constructivist approach to Political Science and International Relations. Has worked on national image analysis through a BigData methodology, as well as on the role of discourse in shaping political phenomena, such as political parties positioning, Euroscepticism and ideology.