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Building Europe: A History of European Unification

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Relying on internal sources, Wilfried Loth analyses the birth and subsequent development of the European Union, from the launch of the Council of Europe and the Schuman Declaration until the Euro crisis and the contested European presidential election of Jean-Claude Juncker. This book shines a light on the crises of the European integration, such as the failure of the Euro Relying on internal sources, Wilfried Loth analyses the birth and subsequent development of the European Union, from the launch of the Council of Europe and the Schuman Declaration until the Euro crisis and the contested European presidential election of Jean-Claude Juncker. This book shines a light on the crises of the European integration, such as the failure of the European Defence Community, De Gaulle's empty chair policy, or the rejection of the European Constitution in France and the Netherlands, but also highlights the indubitable successes that are the Franco-German reconciliation, the establishment of the European common market, and the establishment of an expanding common currency. What this study accomplishes, for the first time, is to illuminate the driving forces behind the European integration process and how it changed European politics and society."An enlightening work. Arequired reading for all who doubt the unfinished history of Europe." - Rolf Steininger, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung."This book will become an indispensable standard work." - J�rg Himmelreich, Neue Z�rcher Zeitung.


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Relying on internal sources, Wilfried Loth analyses the birth and subsequent development of the European Union, from the launch of the Council of Europe and the Schuman Declaration until the Euro crisis and the contested European presidential election of Jean-Claude Juncker. This book shines a light on the crises of the European integration, such as the failure of the Euro Relying on internal sources, Wilfried Loth analyses the birth and subsequent development of the European Union, from the launch of the Council of Europe and the Schuman Declaration until the Euro crisis and the contested European presidential election of Jean-Claude Juncker. This book shines a light on the crises of the European integration, such as the failure of the European Defence Community, De Gaulle's empty chair policy, or the rejection of the European Constitution in France and the Netherlands, but also highlights the indubitable successes that are the Franco-German reconciliation, the establishment of the European common market, and the establishment of an expanding common currency. What this study accomplishes, for the first time, is to illuminate the driving forces behind the European integration process and how it changed European politics and society."An enlightening work. Arequired reading for all who doubt the unfinished history of Europe." - Rolf Steininger, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung."This book will become an indispensable standard work." - J�rg Himmelreich, Neue Z�rcher Zeitung.

9 review for Building Europe: A History of European Unification

  1. 4 out of 5

    Will

    This is a mostly narrative take on European integration, but one which nonetheless filled in a couple of gaps in my knowledge and hinted at some interesting avenues to pursue in future research. Loth argues that Europe's current democratic deficit and the importance of individual leaders stems from a "discrepancy between the Europe that was desired and the Europe that was feasible" (435) and that its most important role today is to protect its citizens from "increasing globalization" (434). Perh This is a mostly narrative take on European integration, but one which nonetheless filled in a couple of gaps in my knowledge and hinted at some interesting avenues to pursue in future research. Loth argues that Europe's current democratic deficit and the importance of individual leaders stems from a "discrepancy between the Europe that was desired and the Europe that was feasible" (435) and that its most important role today is to protect its citizens from "increasing globalization" (434). Perhaps Loth's most interesting contribution is the importance he attaches to a "post-Hague consensus" which drove the form European integration would take following 1948. Quotes: 1. During the Cold War, “European organizations had branches in Prague and Budapest, just as they did in Paris and Brussels.” (3) 2. “It was in fact in The Hague [1948] that the transnational societal consensus on which the later European Communities would rest had become palpable for the first time.” The post-congress “consensus was unavoidably imprecise as regards the institutional configuration of a united Europe. Very clearly, however, it included acceptance of the partial amalgamation of national sovereign rights, the social-welfare configuration of the Community, and the stabilization of the democratic order in the participating countries. After the Hague Congress, this consensus did not simply vanish. Instead, it developed in critical analysis of the experience of concrete European politics, which in turn came to be influenced by it.” (19) 3. “A European Parliamentary Congress met on 8 and 9 November [1968] in the Hague, demanding rapid development of the community, including its expansion, as an answer to the crisis of political leadership revealed by May 1968 and Europeans’ shock over the suppression of the Prague Spring.” (162) 4. “The European Union thereby constitutes an attempt to preserve and further develop the civilizational achievements of the democratic nation-state under conditions of increasing globalization.” ““Europe” thus exhibits characteristics of corresponding to the nation-state projects of earlier periods in history.” (434) 5. Loth notes “The outstanding significance of individual figures in the decision-making process on Europe policy from Robert Schuman and Konrad Adenauer to Jacques Delors, Helmut Kohl and Angela Merkel: given the ambivalences in public opinion, strong leader personalities could clear the way via direct contact with their partners, circumnavigating the routine of the bureaucracies and pledging majorities for their projects.” (435)

  2. 5 out of 5

    Dimitar Angelov

  3. 5 out of 5

    LPenting

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sam Seitz

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jacob Parry

  6. 5 out of 5

    Orazio Mauro

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ahmad Alramahi

  8. 4 out of 5

    Yannick M

  9. 4 out of 5

    Don Cheadle

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