Messianism, Exodus, and the Empty Signifier of European Integration

iCourts Working Paper Series, No. 175, 2019, IMAGINE Paper No. 2, November 2019

19 Pages Posted: 22 Nov 2019

See all articles by Alexander Somek

Alexander Somek

University of Iowa - College of Law

Jakob Rendl

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: November 12, 2019

Abstract

In most his most recent accounts of European integration, J.H.H. Weiler claims that Europe was built with Messianic fervor. After the destruction and evil wrought by the Second World War, Europe was supposed to be a ‘promised land’. The article examines how Weiler conflates the narrative of the exodus with the Messianic leap into a different aeon and concludes that they have to be held distinct. It also suggests that Weiler’s fusion of two distinct religious ideas betrays the force of ‘Europe’ as an ‘empty signifier’ (Laclau) of integration.

Keywords: Political Messianism, J.H.H. Weiler, European Integration

Suggested Citation

Somek, Alexander and Rendl, Jakob, Messianism, Exodus, and the Empty Signifier of European Integration (November 12, 2019). iCourts Working Paper Series, No. 175, 2019, IMAGINE Paper No. 2, November 2019 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3485490 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3485490

Alexander Somek (Contact Author)

University of Iowa - College of Law ( email )

Melrose and Byington
Iowa City, IA 52242
United States

Jakob Rendl

affiliation not provided to SSRN

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