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Converging Pathways- Itinerarios Cruzados

Spain and the European Integration Process- España y el proceso de construcción europea

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Edited By Cristina Blanco-Sío Lopez and Susana Muñoz

Europe: the fruit of a willing construction that superseded much of its past darkness by gradually transforming numerous walls, prejudices and conflicts into bridges of cooperation and mutually enriching developments. Spain: An amalgam of creative tensions, of groundbreaking realisations, of successively frustrated and regained horizons and of long fought hopes. This monograph aims to analyse the vectors and degrees of convergence, the cohesion factors and the changing paradigms of the relation between both in a context marked by crisis and questioning. The key question in this realm is: Do they still revolve around converging pathways? The answer implies, at once, conscious mirrors and new determinations.
Europa: Fruto de una construcción que superó muchas de las sombras de su pasado por medio de la transformación de numerosos muros, prejuicios y confl ictos en puentes de cooperación y en desarrollos mutuamente enriquecedores. España: Una amalgama de tensiones creativas, ideas revolucionarias, horizontes sucesivamente frustrados y reconquistados y esperanzas por las que se lucha largamente. Esta obra tiene por objetivo analizar los vectores y grados de convergencia, los factores de cohesión y los paradigmas cambiantes de la relación entre ambas en un contexto de crisis y cuestionamiento. La pregunta clave en este sentido es: ¿Gravitan todavía en torno a itinerarios cruzados? La respuesta implica, a un tiempo, reflejos conscientes y nuevas determinaciones.
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Membership of the European Union. Repercussions for Historic Identity in Portugal and Spain: (José María Gil-Robles Gil-Delgado)

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← 40 | 41 → Membership of the European Union

Repercussions for Historic Identity in Portugal and Spain

José María GIL-ROBLES GIL-DELGADO

Chair Jean Monnet Ad Personam, Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence “Antonio Truyol”, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, President of the Jean Monnet pour l’Europe Foundation

Introduction

By way of background to my contribution, I should state that I am very sceptical where historic identities are concerned. I am not of the view that Portugal and Spain, or indeed the other members of the European Union, have virtually immutable identities that define them through the ages. Identity, like everything associated with the human race, is continually changing.

Additionally, as a plain-speaker, I must confess that every debate on identity is ultimately exposed as a cover for the interests of some bureaucracy or other that is seeking greater power but finds it more expedient to present its claims wrapped in the cellophane of a self-styled historic “essence”.

Spain, a Democracy in the Process of Consolidation

Spain is an ancient nation of nations, and, to that extent, resembles the Europe of Montesquieu’s imagination (L’Europe est une nation composée de plusieurs autres). It became unified following a tumultuous odyssey lasting almost two centuries during which:

– It lost an empire;

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