Edited By Lucia Bonfreschi, Giovanni Orsina and Antonio Varsori
A Socialist Europe? Democratic Socialist Party Ideas and the Process of European Integration 1960-1973
A Socialist Europe?
Democratic Socialist Party Ideas and the Process of European Integration 1960-1973
Professor, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim
Focussing on Social Democratic and Socialist political parties and politicians, this contribution explores how the process of European integration was dealt with in transnational Socialist arenas during the 1960s and early 1970s.1 It explores ideas of political Europe in the Socialist International (SI), the Socialist parties of the European Community (EC) and the Socialist Group in the European Parliament (EP), and examines how these ideas were interpreted and translated into policies and how they developed during the period.2 Although Northern European Labour parties were reluctant to engage in the European project on the eve of the 1960s, the Democratic Socialist parties of the European Economic Community (EEC) had been persistently in favour of deeper integration since the late 1950s. Through the SI network in particular, they repeatedly insisted that instead of preventing Socialist policies, European Community membership actually contributed to upgrading welfare provisions and social security. In keeping with these perceptions, they launched ideas to introduce more Socialist policies on a European-wide scale. ← 63 | 64 →
The argument put forward in this study is that ideas for political Europe in transnational Socialist networks eventually translated into a common understanding that being part of the EC was in keeping with national planning and developing the welfare state. By an ever-increasing circle of networked Socialist politicians, the EC was...
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