TŐKE, Márton: The Great Backlash - Contested Concepts of European Identity, Citizenship and Universality after the French Revolution.

In their core, every intellectual community, every tradition, and every vocabulary emerges and is constructed based on the interplay between exclusion and inclusion. The interpretative and semantic boundaries of a given concept - whether they come into being organically or by carefully conducted planning - can influence the fate of millions, therefore rendering the understanding of these processes more than a mere philological concern. This is never truer than during the Age of Revolutions, and most especially in the case of the French Revolution, the groundbreaking achievements of political philosophy that preceded it and the decades-long theoretical debates that followed in its wake. The growing body of literature on various aspects involving inclusion and exclusion from a given community during the Revolution, such as Dan Edelstein's work on the links between natural rights philosophies and the Jacobin Terror, has been instrumental in our understanding of these processes. Despite these endeavors, however, the reactionary/conservative tradition of the late 18th and the early 19th century has so far been relatively neglected from this aspect. In accordance with the aims of the conference, this paper intends to examine texts by various reactionary/anti-revolutionary, or (as Isaiah Berlin controversially labeled it) "Counter-Enlightenment" authors between 1789 and 1815, including Edmund Burke, Louis de Bonald, François-René de Chateaubriand, Joseph de Maistre, and Klemens von Metternich, in order to define their positions on European identity as such, and particularly the novel concepts of citizenship in relation to the Kantian proposition of universalism. It also intends to shed light on the debates these thinkers were engaged in through their writings, the concepts and movements they seen as their adversaries, with the ultimate aim of illuminating how exclusion from and inclusion in the constituency, citizenship, and even the concept of "human" in a few cases, was understood and utilized by reactionary philosophers.