Read e-book online A Union of Diversity: Language, Identity and Polity-Building PDF

By Peter A. Kraus

ISBN-10: 0511387970

ISBN-13: 9780511387975

ISBN-10: 0521859395

ISBN-13: 9780521859394

The ecu Union's motto 'United in variety' contrasts with the cultural standardization entailed within the formation of geographical regions and the forging of political identities in Europe. So what does being 'united in range' suggest? targeting language politics and rules, this ebook bargains an intensive evaluation of the results of cultural and linguistic range for the method of making a eu polity. It sheds gentle on essentially the most urgent difficulties linked to modern id politics. it's always claimed that the recurrent get together of variety in Europe's programmatic declarations has a good political impression. Kraus deals a severe research of the way the european has replied to the normative problem of constructing an institutional body for integration which permits cultural changes to be transcended with no ignoring them.

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Additional info for A Union of Diversity: Language, Identity and Polity-Building in Europe (Themes in European Governance)

Sample text

In its stiff and awkward friendliness it lacks even a hint of the late Habsburg-Kafkaesque. The European Union, seen from its insides in Brussels, has more in common with Habermas’ philosophy. It is an extremely thorough and slowly grinding machine, it can be deadly boring, but it is honest in its own way and important to those whom it concerns. Measured against the model of the nation-state, the EU appears to be a new kind of polity, whose novelty would reside in the creation of an institutional order that lacks a hegemonic internal force and that has a culturally open or ‘undetermined’ constitutional structure.

Proposals to strengthen the parliamentary component are often combined with a preference for installing a bicameral system, which would accentuate the federative moment in the Union. 9 Other proposals aim at strengthening the Commission’s democratic legitimacy. To mention only one example, in May 2001, Lionel Jospin, at the time Prime Minister of France, delivered a general policy statement on Europe 9 As Germany’s former Minister of Foreign Affairs Joschka Fischer (2000: 11–12) suggested in a speech delivered at the Humboldt University in Berlin as the constitutional debate was getting under way.

All in all, the people had often already been ‘made’ before it could become sovereign. As J. H. H. Weiler (2001: 56) puts it, the language of modern constitutionalism has tended to disguise this situation behind a great fallacy, which invites us ‘to confuse the juridical presupposition of a constitutional demos with political and social reality’. The exercise of democratic sovereignty presupposes the existence of a collective identity sustaining the polity conceived of as sovereign. However, from the viewpoint of democratic theory, the problem with this identity is that it can hardly be postulated to be an outcome of democratic decision-making.

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A Union of Diversity: Language, Identity and Polity-Building in Europe (Themes in European Governance) by Peter A. Kraus


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