Portugal was seriously affected by the financial, economic and sovereign debt
crisis. The crisis pushed the debate on European integration, notably on the
European Monetary Union, into the public space. The bailout of the
Portuguese state by the European institutions and the IMF in 2011 made
austerity measures unavoidable and showed the other face of European
integration – keywords in the public discourse switched from ‘modernisation’
and ‘funding’ to ‘austerity’ and ‘poverty’. Political impacts were twofold.
Initially the left of centre Socialist Party (PS), which was in government
at the time, was blamed for the crisis and lost public support, in favour of
a centre right pro-austerity coalition. Yet, four years later, discontent
had grown and the electoral results in October 2015 enabled a convergence
between centre left and radical left parties for the first time in the
recent history of Portuguese democracy.
This introduction presents an overview of key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book explores how experiences in Kosovo have changed the discourse of European security. It provides new and stimulating perspectives on how 'Kosovo' has shaped European post-post-Cold War reality. The book aims to contribute to the insecurity of the field of security studies by sidelining the theoretical worldview that underlies mainstream strategic thinking on the Kosovo events. It investigates how 'Kosovo' has developed into this principal paradigmatic sign in the complex text of European security. The book also investigates how its very marginality has emphasised the unravelling fringes and limits of the sovereign presence of what 'Europe' thinks it stands for, and how it affects the discourse on European security.