This book provides a theoretical and historical examination of the speech and deeds of European founders.
Using a fresh and innovative approach, this monograph connects political theory with concrete political practices based on empirical evidence, and theorizes the internal process of European reconciliations as it has been experienced by those involved. The book draws upon over 100 interviews, memoirs, autobiographies and essays of elite and grassroot actors across the history of the European Union, from the founding of the European Coal and Steel Community in 1950-2 to the 2010 financial crisis. It introduces the reader to major contemporary Western political thinkers, Hannah Arendt, Jürgen Habermas, Charles Taylor and Paul Ricoeur, and examines how their theories develop the interpretation of political phenomena such as European integration. As one of the first studies of EU memories, this approach opens a unique window of analysis to view the development of the European community, and makes a fascinating contribution to our understanding of the political tradition born of 60 years of European integration.
A Political Theory of Identity in European Integration: Memory and Policies will be of strong interest to students and scholars of European politics, contemporary democratic theory and EU studies.