How does the radical left in Europe approach the issue of European
governance? How have left-wing voters and parties responded to growing
popular criticism of the ‘European project’? And how might they respond in
the future? This chapter seeks to answer these questions by, first, locating
left-wing criticism of European integration within a historical context.
While still partly nationalist in orientation, this left tradition is not
necessarily opposed to European integration provided it delivers greater
economic justice and equality – the problem with the current pattern of
integration is that it tends to do precisely the opposite. Can that pattern
be reversed? The chapter briefly discusses some proposals for reversal or
reform, but highlights the difficulties faced in trying to implement any
such programme of left-wing reform at the European level.