The flight from nationalism towards the elusive European identity
in Europe’s path to crisis
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A primary goal of the EU has been to promote a popular sense of European consciousness so as to enable allegiances to shift from individual nation-states to a European centre. This chapter examines the difficulties that have arisen for the EU as it has tried to foster a new European consciousness. The political system of the EU will be truly fortunate if it is able to devise institutions which possess a fraction of the legitimacy enjoyed by the various pillars of Swiss group identity. The EU's role as a collective sustainer of constructive nationalism appeared very threadbare as the post-2009 financial crisis gathered pace. The European cause found it hard to draw on the resources of allegiance and identity commonly available to many nations during periods of difficulty.

Europe’s path to crisis

Disintegration via monetary union

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