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
Date Written: November 12, 2019
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
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