Book

European Integration

Chris J. Bickerton

Published in print December 2012 | ISBN: 9780199606252
Published online May 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191751639 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199606252.001.0001
European Integration

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European integration has traditionally been understood as a struggle between national sovereignty and pan-European supranational governance. Optimists see in the EU’s evolution an inexorable step towards a federal Europe. Pessimists point to enduring national rivalries and conflicts, made all the more bitter by the ongoing economic crisis in Europe. This book argues that both sides to this debate fail to explain key features of today’s EU. Whilst cooperation between national governments becomes deeper and more extensive, we see no grand leaps towards supranationalism. At the same time, though national representatives entrench their role in European integration, they act in ways different from what we would expect from traditional national politicians. They seek consensus rather than conflict and they identify with each other as much as with their own domestic populations. In order to grasp these developments, the book argues that we need to go beyond the clash of national sovereignty versus supranationalism and to understand European integration as a process of state transformation. Focusing on the post-1945 Keynesian consensus and its dismantling in the 1970s and 1980s, this book argues that European states have undergone a profound transformation—from nation states to what it calls member states. Developing the argument both historically and theoretically, and engaging with a wide variety of different literatures, the book argues that by understanding European integration as a process of state transformation we are better able to grasp those mysteries of the EU that have long puzzled researchers and have so frustrated citizens.

Keywords: European integration; nation states; member states; democracy; technocracy; state transformation

Book.  240 pages.  Illustrated.

Subjects: European Union

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Table of Contents

Introduction in European Integration

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Europe’s Compromising Union in European Integration

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The Member State Paradigm in European Integration

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From Nation States to Member States: A Brief History in European Integration

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European Economic Integration and State Transformation in European Integration

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Conclusion in European Integration

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