Reinventing Europe

Course requirements

  • 40% for class attendance and activity,
  • 10% for short midterm essay (cca. 3,000 words)
  • 10% for presentation,
  • 40% for academic essay (7,000-8,000 words).

Assigned weekly readings are listed below.

Course description

During the decade following 1989, the EU arrived at a crossroads. After the commitment incorporated into the Maastricht Treaty to open up towards the former Soviet bloc countries of Eastern and Central Europe, it became increasingly clear that the successful and sophisticated community method elaborated by the founding fathers was not going to guarantee the success of the Eastern enlargement.  The mediation between intergovernmental and supranational institutions (to remove obstacles to deepening and widening integration) has already slowed down among the EU 15.  The perspective of a „Big Bang” enlargement leading to   EU 25/27 made it  clear that radical institutional reforms are needed if the EU wants to speed up its decisionmaking procedures and enhance its efficiency as a global player or, in the worst case, to avoid desintegration.

One of the core problems of the European construction, largely responsible for its inefficiency, is the ‘democratic deficit’, i.e. the lack of legitimacy of  its supranational institutions and non-elected polititians.  Facing and understanding the unfolding crisis of the integration process,  a few outstanding politicians and visionaries of the EU, such as Joschka Fischer and Jaques Delors, initiated a sincere and open debate about the „Future of Europe” in 2000.  Despite deep-going self-criticism and serious attempts at a new dialogue with EU-citizens, the Nice Treaty brought negative results: it has reinforced intergovernmentalism, secret diplomacy and lack of transparency.  Europe was crying for reforms and  for new long-term visions, but most of its leaders got stuck with short-sighted, national interests. It is still hard to know what the finalité of European construction will look like.  Definitions during the past decade have certainly moved from negative towards more affirmative characterizations.  Instead of an “unidentifiable political object “ (Delors), one can speak today of a “post modern empire of neo-medieval character” or about the  political invention of “network-governance” with a problem-solving strategy of a “negotiating marathon”.

Office phone: 8450619

Office hours: Tuesday 1-3 PM

Contact: fmiszlivetz(-at-)


Week 1

Who started European integration? Unique collision of determining circumstances after WWII. The geopolitical situation. Poverty, reconstruction and ideology in postwar Western Europe. Marshall Aid and the Red Army


Dedman, Martin J.: The Origins and Development of the European Union 1945-1995 : A History of European Integration, London, New York, Routledge, 1996. (pp 1-51)(pp 52-103)(pp 104-137) Google book form

Monnet, Jean: Memoirs. London: Collins, 1978. Part One. (Chapters 1-7)

Week 2

Towards the first supranational institutions created by competing nationstates and former enemies. Jean Monnet and the founding fathers vis-a-vis political and economic nationalism


Monnet, Jean: Memoirs. London: Collins, 1978. Part Two. (Chapters 9-14 and Chapters 15-21)

Week 3

Federation or Confederation, Between intergovernmentalism and supranationalism: the challenge for European democracies to invent a new political power. The problems of member states as nation states.
Competing definitions of the EU:

  • an ‘unidentifiable political object (Jacques Delors),
  • a ‘non-state’ and ‘non-nation’ (Philippe C. Schmitter)
  • unity in diversity?,
  • network governance?,
  • negotiating marathon?


Delanty, Gerard and Rumford, Chris: Rethinking Europe. New York: Routledge, 2005 (pp 50-95 and 102-105)

Miszlivetz, Ferenc: The Birth of a New Sovereign. In: Society and Economy. Vol. 25, No.3, 2003, (pp 283-307).

Menon, Anand and Wright, Vincent: From the Nation State to Europe? Oxford, 2001. (pp 9-51) and (pp 56-93)

Week 4

After the fall of the Berlin Wall: Europe at crossroads. Early reactions between hesitation and enthusiasm. Mitigating or sharpening conflicts? The war and disintegration of Yugoslavia


Delanty, Gerard: Europe Becoming: The Civilizational Consequences of Enlargement In:  Ralf Rogowski and Charles Turner (ed.). The Shape of the New Europe, Cambridge University Press, 2006, (pp 125-146).

Jensen, Jody (ed.), Europe Bound: Faultlines and Frontlines of Security in the Balkans, Szombathely, Savaria University Press, 2003,  (pp 15-38, 287-313, and pp 314-367)

Week 5

Towards a multilevel governance and transnational democracy? Experimenting with expanding the scope and size of democracy in Europe. The major question  of this session is whether democracy is possible on a supranational level and if so, how to make it functioning.


Schmitter, Philippe C.: How to Democratize the EU and Why Bother? Lanham:Rowman & Littlefield, 2000. – (pp 1-23 and 115-135)

Schmidt,Vivian A. Democracy in Europe. The EU and national polities. Oxford University Press, 2006. – (pp 1-49 and 50-101)

Week 6

Citizenship in Europe. States have been defined in terms of insiders (citizens) and outsiders (foreigners). The European Union supercedes this traditional distinction by removing the capability of its member states to differentiate between their own citizens and those of other EU member states. European citizenship not only provides Europeans with choices about where to live but also forces member states to respect those choices.


Maas, Willem: Creating European Citizens. Lanham: Rawman & Littlefield, 2007. (pp 11-6768-111 and 112-120 )

Week 7

Is it possible to create a supranational political community without a demos? Constitutionalization as an attempt at strengthening European identity has failed. The ‘permissive consensus’ supporting the process of integration entered a deep crises with the rejection of the Constitutional Treaty in France and Holland in 2005. Ironically, this has undermined the belief that European citizens don’t have any interest in EU matters and the suggestion that citizens cannot have any influence on European politics.

After the double no vote the EU has initiated a period of contemplation which was supposed to bring real civil society organizations closer to decision making. This process has an open end and has led so far to the emergence of public spaces throughout Europe without constituting a European demos.


Balme, Richard – Chabanet, Didier: European Governance and Democracy: Power and Protest in the EU, Rowman & Littlefield Publisher, 2008. (pp 21-6768-74, 117-149 and 150-189).

Duff, Andrew: The Struggle for Europe’s Constitution, Federal Trust, 2006 (pp 1-49, 50-67)

Week 8

The European Social Model: words vs. deeds. Are the expectations towards a European social model still realistic? Can the growing distance between the political and social philosophy of the EU and the neo-liberal economic policy of the European Central Bank be bridged? What are the chances for a new social contract on the EU level? The role and nature of European civil society


Giannetti, Marilena and Nuti, Mario: The European Social Model and its Dilution as a result of EU enlargement. TIGER  Papers Series, 2007. No. 105.

Zielonka, Jan: Europe as Empire : the Nature of the Enlarged European Union, Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2010. – ISBN 978-0-19-923186-7 (pp 1-22, 117-139 and 171-191)

Teló, Mario: Europe: A Civilian Power? European Union, Global Governance, World Order, Palgrave Macmillan, 2006. Chapter 3, The Heart of the European Integration: the Socio-economic Model between Convergence and National Interest, (pp 152-179).

McCormick, John: Europeanism, Oxford, 2010 (pp 116- 167).

Week 9

Facing the challenges of turbulent neighbourhoods, competition for scarce resources and for multilateral global leadership the EU would need to eliminate cleavages between short term material (economic, financial, security, power, etc.) interests and long term visions. A robust harmonization of overlapping policies seems to be inevitable.
The New European Neighbourhood Policy and the Common Foreign and Security Policy, the process of enlargement could become effective only in case of internal harmonization and if Europe would be able to find a unanimous stand in world affairs. Is the EU still a magnet for neighbouring non-member states? The examples of Turkey, the MENA countries, Belorussia, etc. do not necessarily support this suggestion.


Teló, Mario: Europe: A Civilian Power? European Union, Global Governance, World Order, Palgrave Macmillan, 2006. Chapter 4, The Development of the European Union as an International Actor (pp 198-237 and Notes).

John McCormick: Europeanism, Oxford 2010 (pp 191-215).

Week 10

The EuroDream or EuroNightmare? Can the ‘European Dream’ replace the ‘American Dream’? The new debate about the future of Europe: an uninterrupted push for Reinventing. Consequences of a deepening Euro-crisis.


Rifkin, Jeremy:  The European Dream. Cambridge, Polity, 2004. Chapters 8-11 and Chapter 12

Schwimmer, Walter: The European Dream, London – New York, Continuum, 2004. (Recommended)

Fligstein, Neil: Euroclash : The EU, European Identity, and the Future of Europe, Oxford, New York, Oxford University Press, 2010.

Week 11

Europe 2020:  the Lisbon Treaty and the Lisbon process: towards a knowledge based network society, or back to the nation-state? Social dimension and expected impact of the Lisbon Treaty and the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU. Questions of a European identity

Europe 2020 A European strategy for smart and inclusive growth. European Commission, 2010.

Cerutti, Furio, Lucarelli, Sonja: The Search for a European Identity. Routledge, 2008. Chapters 1-2

Marlier Eric and Natali, David (eds.) Europe 2020. Towards a more social Europe? Peter Lang, Brussels, New York, Wien, 2008 (pp 15-63 and 64-107). Google book link

Week 12

Strengthening the European Parliament and/or towards more participative and deliberative democracy? Citizens’ initiative – a new form of citizen participation in the European decision-making process. Extension of the European Parliament’s power in the practice


Schmitter, Philippe C. at al: The Future of Democracy in Europe Trends, analyses and reforms. Council of Europe Publishing, 2004 (pp 13-93).

Hix, Simon: What’s Wrong with the European Union and How to Fix It. Cambridge: Polity, 2008. (pp 31-68 , 74-86 and 179-192)

Balme, Richard and Chabanet, Didier:  European Govermace and Democracy
Power and Protest in the EU. Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, New York, 2008. (pp 191-249)

O’Neill,Michael: The Struggle for the European Constitution : a Past and Future History , London, Routledge, 2009. (recommended)

Monnet, Jean: Memoirs. London: Collins, 1978. Part Two.