European Identity

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Why are hopes fading for a single European identity? Economic integration has advanced faster and further than predicted, yet the European sense of 'who we are' is fragmenting. Exploiting decades of permissive consensus, Europe's elites designed and completed the single market, the euro, the Schengen passport-free zone, and, most recently, crafted an extraordinarily successful policy of enlargement. At the same time, these attempts to de-politicize politics, to create Europe by stealth, have produced a political backlash. This ambitious survey of identity in Europe captures the experiences of the winners and losers, optimists and pessimists, movers and stayers in a Europe where spatial and cultural borders are becoming ever more permeable. A full understanding of Europe's ambivalence, refracted through its multiple identities, lies at the intersection of competing European political projects and social processes.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Figuring out what the EU is can be hard – but deciding who the Europeans are can be even harder…Jeffrey Checkel and Peter Katzenstein’s edited volume provides a nuanced overview of the processes of political identity formation.”
– Kathleen R. McNamara, Georgetown University, Foreign Affairs

“...this book is a welcome corrective to the proliferation of Euro-romantic scholarship and its unrealistic expectations of a United States of Europe, and it contributes significantly to the understanding of the complex relationship between traditional national and European orientations.”
Perspectives on Politics, William Safran, University of Colorado- Boulder

“This is the kind of volume that will fascinate scholars of European politics – and beyond. It demonstrates the multiplicity of European identities, the combination of the hopes and fears that have been braided around these identities, and the different kinds of politics that have defined and redefined its possibilities and perils as viewed from different European spaces. European Identity is less a summary of what we think we know and more of a road map for future scholarship.”
Michael Barnett, Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota

“This timely book advances two significant claims. First, European identity has become inevitably politicized and contested. Second, next to the modern, enlightened vision of Europe, a much more xenophobic and populist identity construction has emerged, with ‘Europe to the Europeans’ as its rallying cry. Checkel and Katzenstein have collected an impressive group of authors. Their book serves as a huge question mark to the conventional wisdom that the Europeanization of identities is a benign and uncontested process of post-modern nation-building.”
Dr Thomas Risse, Co-ordinator, Research Center ‘Governance in Areas of Limited Statehood’ and Director, Center for Transnational Relations, Foreign and Security Policy, Freie Universität Berlin

“As a whole, the Checkel and Katzenstein volume provides a multilayered exploration of an issue that has been neglected, and that is understandably difficult to study. It also offers a useful working definition of identity that points to the ways in which future researchers can approach the subject” - Mai’a K. Davis Cross, Comparative Politics

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521883016
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/2009
  • Series: Contemporary European Politics Series
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Jeffrey T. Checkel is the Simons Chair in International Law and Human Security in the School for International Studies at Simon Fraser University, and Adjunct Research Professor in the Centre for the Study of Civil War at the International Peace Research Institute, Oslo.

Peter J. Katzenstein is Walter S. Carpenter, Jr. Professor of International Studies in the Department of Government at Cornell University.

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Table of Contents

1. The politicization of European identities Jeffrey T. Checkel and Peter J. Katzenstein; Part I. European Identity as Project: 2. Political identity in a community of strangers Dario Castiglione; 3. Experimental identities (after Maastricht) Douglas R. Holmes; 4. The public sphere and the European Union's political identity Juan Díez Medrano; Part II. European Identity as Process: 5. Being European: East and West Holly Case; 6. Who are the Europeans and how does this matter for politics? Neil Fligstein; 7. Immigration, migration, and free movement in the making of Europe Adrian Favell; Part III. European Identity in Context: 8. Identification with Europe and politicization of the EU since the 1980s Hartmut Kaelble; 9. Conclusion - European identity in context Peter J. Katzenstein and Jeffrey T. Checkel.

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