The development of the European Union as a community-based project of integration with decision-making powers outside the constitutional architecture of the nation-state is the most significant innovation in twentieth-century political organisation. It raises fundamental questions about our understanding of the state, sovereignty, citizenship, democracy, and the relationship between political power and economic forces. Despite its achievements, events at the start of the twenty-first century – including the political, economic, and financial crisis of the Eurozone, as well as Brexit and the rise of populism – pose an existential threat to the EU. Memory and the future of Europe addresses the crisis of the EU by treating integration as a response to the rupture created by the continent’s experience of total war. It traces Europe’s existing pathologies to the project’s loss of its moral foundations rooted in collective memories of total war. As the generations with personal memories of the two world wars pass away, economic gain has become the EU’s sole raison d’être. If it is to survive its future challenges, the EU will have to create a new historical imaginary that relies not only on the lessons of the past, but also builds on Europe’s ability to protect its citizens by serving as a counterweight against the forces of globalisation. By framing its argument through the critical theory of the Frankfurt School, Memory and the future of Europe will attract readers interested in political and social philosophy, collective memory studies, European studies, international relations, and contemporary politics.
This book explains theoretical work in postcolonial and postsocialist studies to
offer a novel and distinctive insight into how Yugoslavia is configured by, and
through, race. It presents the history of how ideas of racialised difference
have been translated globally in Yugoslavia. The book provides a discussion on
the critical race scholarship, global historical sociologies of 'race in
translation' and south-east European cultural critique to show that the
Yugoslav region is deeply embedded in global formations of race. It considers
the geopolitical imagination of popular culture; the history of ethnicity; and
transnational formations of race before and during state socialism, including
the Non-Aligned Movement. The book also considers the post-Yugoslav discourses
of security, migration, terrorism and international intervention, including the
War on Terror and the refugee crisis. It elaborates how often-neglected aspects
of the history of nationhood and migration reveal connections that tie the
region into the global history of race. The book also explains the linkage
between ethnic exclusivism and territory in the ethnopolitical logic of the
Bosnian conflict and in the internationally mediated peace agreements that
enshrined it: 'apartheid cartography'. Race and whiteness remained
perceptible in post-war Bosnian identity discourses as new, open-ended forms of
post-conflict international intervention developed.
This book offers a unique and timely reading of the early Frankfurt School in response to the recent 'affective turn' within the arts and humanities. It revisits some of the founding tenets of critical theory in the context of the establishment of the Institute for Social Research in the early twentieth century. The book focuses on the work of Walter Benjamin, whose varied engagements with the subject of melancholia prove to be far more mobile and complex than traditional accounts. It also looks at how an affective politics underpins critical theory's engagement with the world of objects, exploring the affective politics of hope. Situating the affective turn and the new materialisms within a wider context of the 'post-critical', it explains how critical theory, in its originary form, is primarily associated with the work of the Frankfurt School. The book presents an analysis of Theodor Adorno's form of social critique and 'conscious unhappiness', that is, a wilful rejection of any privatized or individualized notion of happiness in favour of a militant and political discontent. A note on the timely reconstruction of early critical theory's own engagements with the object world via aesthetics and mimesis follows. The post-Cold War triumphalism of many on the right, accompanied by claims of the 'end of history', created a sense of fearlessness, righteousness, and unfettered optimism. The book notes how political realism has become the dominant paradigm, banishing utopian impulses and diminishing political hopes to the most myopic of visions.
Tito and some Non-Aligned travellers had imagined Yugoslav–African brotherhood – while participation in European/transatlantic security and border projects would create new opportunities for identification with whiteness and the West. Perceiving the postcoloniality of postsocialism requires appreciating this contradiction.
‘New’ postsocialist racisms and the Yugoslav wars
Societies across central and eastern Europe, not just the Yugoslav region, witnessed an ‘increasingly visible ethno-nationalism’ – in revivals of narratives
Memory, leadership, and the fi rst phase of integration (1945– 58)
Peter J. Verovšek
community model of pooled sovereignty, Monnet, Schuman, and Adenauer set the institutional foundations of the European project.
The idea of unifying Europe has a long history. While previous initiatives gained little traction, the rupture of 1945 made the European movement part of the continent’s postwar Zeitgeist . However, despite its newfound popularity, in the early postwar period the shape that this new Europe would take was still open. As Craig Parsons points out, ‘The massive environmental changes of World War II made “Europeanist” ideas broadly salient by 1945
in Second World War historiography about how far Fascism and Nazism influenced the NDH (Kallis 2015 ); they still laid foundations that would transform again as the Yugoslav region negotiated the geopolitics of the Cold War.
Venetian formations of race
In October 2015, the Croatian football club HNK Rijeka, nicknamed ‘Bijeli’ (‘Whites’) for their all-white home strip, wore an unusual fourth kit against nearby Opatija: a purple shirt half-covered by a black-skinned, turbaned head, with prominent red lips and gold-rimmed eyes
postwar era sought to uncover the complicity of their parents and grandparents in the sufferings and atrocities of totalitarianism. The growing interest in collective remembrance that accompanied the fall of the dictatorships in Spain, Portugal, and Greece in the 1970s and 1980s was given further impetus by the events of 1989 and ‘the resurfacing of suppressed national concerns among subjugated European peoples on both sides of the Iron Curtain,’ which allowed issues of collective memory that had been repressed by the bipolar narrative of the Cold War to re-emerge. 3
Eurosclerosis (1959– 84) and the second phase of integration (1985– 2003)
Peter J. Verovšek
A bellicose past entangled all European nations in bloody conflicts. They drew a conclusion from that military and spiritual mobilisation … the imperative of developing new, supranational forms of cooperation after the Second World War.
Jürgen Habermas and Jacques Derrida, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (2003)
The classic narrative of integration
In the previous chapter I showed how Monnet, Schuman, and Adenauer drew on the resources of collective memory they had obtained as a result of the narrative break of 1945 to imagine, motivate, and
project at a time when leaders with no personal memories of total war increasingly calculate their European interests in terms of short-term cost–benefit analysis. The following section focuses on political education and the development of a supranational understanding history as the foundation for a truly postnational European identity. Similar to the current generation of leaders, the cohort born after 1980 also does not have personal memories of Europe’s age of total war. However, this younger generation is equipped with new, pro-European resources as a result of
migrations caused by decades of Habsburg–Ottoman, Venetian–Ottoman and sometimes Habsburg–Venetian war (with land- and sea-based raiding and banditry between wars) decisively affected long-term inter-ethnic relations. To the extent that Serb–Croat relations defined the region's twentieth-century political history (Djokić 2007 ), the most significant was the depopulation of the Dalmatian hinterland and central Bosnia and their repopulation through alternating integration into Habsburg and Ottoman frontier governance structures. In 1522, the Habsburg Empire first