European Studies and the European Crisis: Legal and Political Science between Critique and Complacency

22 Pages Posted: 21 Aug 2017

See all articles by Christian Joerges

Christian Joerges

University of Bremen - Faculty of Law; Hertie School of Governance

Christian Kreuder‐Sonnen

WZB Berlin Social Science Center

Date Written: August 2017

Abstract

European Studies used to be dominated by legal and political science approaches which hailed the progress of European integration and its reliance on law. The recent set of crises that struck the EU have highlighted fundamental problems in the ways and means by which European integration unfolds. The quasi‐authoritarian emergency politics deployed in the euro crisis is a radical expression of the fading prevalence of democratic processes to accommodate economic and social diversity in the Union. As we argue in this paper, however, the mainstreams in both disciplines retain a largely affirmative and apologetic stance on the EU's post‐democratic and extra‐constitutional development. While political science contributions mostly content themselves with a revival of conventional integration theories and thus turn a blind eye to normatively critical aspects of European crisis governance, legal scholarship is in short supply of normatively convincing theoretical paradigms and thus aligns itself with the functionalist reasoning of the EU's Court of Justice. Yet, we also identify critical peripheries in both disciplines which intersect in their critical appraisal of the authoritarian tendencies that inhere in the crisis‐ridden state of European integration. Their results curb the prevailing optimism and underline that the need for fundamental reorientations in both the theory and practice of European integration has become irrefutable.

Suggested Citation

Joerges, Christian and Kreuder‐Sonnen, Christian, European Studies and the European Crisis: Legal and Political Science between Critique and Complacency (August 2017). European Law Journal, Vol. 23, Issue 1-2, pp. 118-139, 2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3021378 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/eulj.12225

Christian Joerges (Contact Author)

University of Bremen - Faculty of Law ( email )

PO Box 330440
Bremen, 28334
Germany

Hertie School of Governance ( email )

Friedrichstraße 180
Berlin, 10117
Germany

Christian Kreuder‐Sonnen

WZB Berlin Social Science Center ( email )

Reichpietschufer 50
D-10785 Berlin, 10785
Germany

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