chapter  8
24 Pages

The Conservatives

Between Tradition and Change

During recent decades the conservatives in Western Europe have become generally closer in importance to the Christian Democrats. The ideological foundation of conservatism was opposition to the rationalist ideas connected with revolution, the Enlightenment, and English utilitarianism. The birth of conservatism as a political ideology linked to English philosopher Edmund Burke. The most important European structure for conservatives is the European Democratic Union (EDU) founded at the end of the 1970s. During the course of the 1990s cooperation between the two structures intensified, and in the European Parliament a joint club was founded under the name European People Party-European Democrats (EPP-ED). The emphasis was on national solidarity, which was to lead to a lessening of differences within the nation, and rejection of cosmopolitan liberalism and the liberal state. The status of authentic historical conservatism in East-Central Europe in the era of modern mass democratic politics was always very complicated.