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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Europe: the fruit of a willing construction that superseded much of its past darkness by gradually transforming numerous walls, prejudices and conflicts into bridges of cooperation and mutually enriching developments.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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Memory Struggles for the European Sacred. Perspectives from Spain, West Germany and Poland: (Harald Wydra)

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← 310 | 311 → Memory Struggles for the European Sacred

Perspectives from Spain, West Germany and Poland

Harald WYDRA

Fellow, St Catharine’s College, University of Cambridge

The challenge of constructing a collective identity in the European Union without a political centre that expresses verticality of rule has been an on-going challenge, which has been further complicated by the “Eastern enlargement”. Despite repeated calls for Holocaust memory as the foundational myth of Europe, competing narratives of victimhood have led to struggles over a common European memory. My proposition is to link competing imaginations of “Europe” to different experiential backgrounds. Examining the cases of Spain, (West) Germany, and Poland, this paper argues that aspirations to a “European sacred” has been shaped and re-shaped in the inter-generational search for meaning. Notions of national greatness and patriotism were challenged by post-war generations in West Germany, thus making the acceptance of Holocaust memory a constitutive part of its own democratic and European identity. Post-communist Eastern European countries such as Poland have used narratives of its own victimhood under communism to highlight the legitimate desire to “return to Europe”. Spain’s transition to democracy was initially based on the active “forgetting” of the civil war, aiming for consensus, convivencia, and national reconciliation. However, with the rise of the new generations that grew up by learning and living the democratic consensus in a Europe-oriented Spain, a struggle for memories of the civil war has erupted. The purpose of this paper is twofold:...

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