There has been a lot of talk about the European Union's so-called 'democratic deficit', by which is meant its lack of legitimacy in the eyes of its citizens. This book provides a critical analysis of the democratic stalemate in European politics. It argues that the root of the 'democratic deficit' has more to do with the domestic political fields of the Union's member-states and the structure of the evolving European political field than with the relationships between supranational institutions. The book analyses the complex ways 'Europe' is integrated into domestic politics and shows how domestic political fields and cultures have prevented deepening integration. As a result of the formation of a European political field, political resources in European 'postnational' and 'postabsolutist' polities are being redistributed. The theory of structural constructivism proposed fuses French structural theories of politics and a 'bottom-up' approach to European integration. The book examines the relationship between French political traditions and the construction of a European security structure from the point of view of identity politics and the French post-imperialist syndrome. The educational and social homogeneity of French civil servants provides a political resource that certain individuals can use in Brussels, influencing the direction and form of European integration. Studying legislative legitimacy in the European Parliament elections, the book highlights that intellectuals are important players in French politics: the politics of the street has always been a key part of French political life.
conditioned by the structures of national political fields and their specific
historical traditions. In this chapter, I will examine the relationship between
French political traditions and the construction of a Europeansecuritystructure.
This will be approached from the point of view of identity politics and the
French post-imperialist syndrome (Kortunov 2001), by investigating a complex
set of symptoms arising from the discrepancy between French ambition and
reality. National and European identities are intertwined with institutions that
frame political action and ideas
Robert Hue's list 'Bouge l’Europe!’ were caught between contradictory
ideological and pragmatic political requirements. Ideologically, the French
Communist Party was against market forces and the creation of a common
European defence. Pragmatically, as a partner in Jospin's government, it had to
back the French war effort in the Balkans. It could not openly question Jospin's
moves to forge a common Europeansecuritystructure, to cut public spending or
to privatise industry. Hue even declared in the business daily La Tribune that
‘the Communists are not the
should put its trust in all-Europeansecuritystructures embodied in a reinforced and reformed Conference on
Security and Cooperation in Europe (Kuźniar 2008: 88–92).
Indulging the inter-war Intermarium idea, President Lech
Wałęsa briefly toyed with the idea of NATO-bis: a separate
collective security alliance of all former Warsaw Pact members minus Russia
(Onyszkiewicz, 1999 : 135). Another expression of a separate East