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Imagining Europe as a Global Player

The Ideological Construction of a New European Identity within the EU


Christoffer Kolvraa

This book argues that since 2001 the primary discursive context for articulating a European identity within the EU has increasingly become the idea of a common foreign policy for Europe. A new grand project of making Europe a true global player is being put forth and it is this as yet unrealised ideal that European citizens are now being asked to identify with.
The author examines European identity as an ideological construction that seeks to elicit emotional and affective attachment to the political project of realising a utopian ideal. He unravels the discourses involved in the construction of European identity by drawing on theories and methods from discourse analysis, the study of political myths, narratology and psychoanalysis. The European Neighbourhood Policy is studied in detail, with a focus on the dynamic challenges that ensue when grand ideological statements have to be implemented in a concrete and specific context.


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Preface 9


9 Preface The present book is based on my PhD research undertaken at Aarhus University, Denmark, between 2006 and 2009. As a PhD student I was fortunate enough to also be allowed extensive stays at both Freie Universität Berlin, and Lancaster University, England. I would like here to thank those scholars, colleagues and friends who both abroad and at home allowed me to present my work and were willing to debate it with me. Especially I would like to thank Jan Ifversen without whose guidance, patience and willingness to discuss my ideas, none of this would have been possible.

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