The text analyzes the results of public opinion survey by the Eurobarometer i.e. the extent of the polarization in the EU. It explains how and why results have changed in the past couple of years and how the trust in EU institutions has alternated. It singles out the most important social cleavages in the EU and how they change over time, as well as how political institutions are invested with legitimacy by the citizens. Finally, it delineates trends toward strengthening of extreme right-wing parties as one of the possible responses to the crisis and how the EU slowly abandons the Copenhagen criteria for accession, primarily by making political decisions on the basis of which a country makes advances on its path toward the EU.