Should Europeans Citizens Die - Or at Least Pay Taxes - for Europe? Allegiance, Identity and Integration Paradigms
Pablo Cristóbal Jiménez Lobeira
Institute for Ethics & Society (UNDA); Centre for European Studies (ANU)
July 11, 2010
In the concept of European citizenship, public and international law intersect. The unity of the European polity results from the interplay between national and European loyalties. Citizens’ allegiance to the European polity depends on how much they see the polity’s identity as theirs. Foundational ideals that shaped the European project’s identity included social reconciliation and peaceful coexistence, economic reconstruction and widespread prosperity, and the creation of supranational structures to rein in nationalism. A broad cultural consensus underlay the first impulse for integration. Europeans had little trouble giving explicit or tacit allegiance to such a project, which resulted in an unparalleled success. However, roughly 60 years and 20 Member States later, social integration is being challenged as immigrants with diverse cultural backgrounds arrive, while far-right political parties surge in reaction; economic integration is confronted with a faltering euro and countries struggling to meet financial commitments; and political integration weakens as the EU seems to fail the democratic test. Cultural assumptions are no longer shared by all. Allegiance to today’s EU is problematic for the ordinary European citizen. This paper submits that careful attention to the spirit of the foundational ideals sheds light on how the present problems as well as future integration could be approached.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 48
Keywords: allegiance, analogical unity, differentiated cooperation, European citizens, integration paradigms, interculturalism, political identity, inclusive public sphere
Date posted: November 9, 2010 ; Last revised: January 19, 2012
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