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Forces Shaping the EU

Social Science Approaches to Understanding the European Union

Josef Langer

This book investigates the European Union as an object of the social sciences. Although its main direction is to discuss different dimensions of the EU project and the direction of its development, it also reflects the state of the social sciences in this development. Accordingly, the book is structured to take into consideration «modernist», «critical» and «culturalist» perspectives. Given this frame the contributions by individual authors deliver a wide range of insights into the EU project, insights which often point to aspects hidden, rarely mentioned or not at all recognized in the official discourse about the EU. Besides, attention is raised for the precarious cognitive situation of the social sciences in times of rapid societal transformation.
Contents: Josef Langer: Where does the European Union go? Social Science Questions and Answers – Ari Nieminen: Explaining European Union Integration Structural Determinism Versus Open Future – Lojze Sočan: The European Union in a Global Context. A Developmental Approach – Max Haller: The European Union. A New Global Power or a New Civil Community? – Manfred Prisching: The Parameters of Europe – József Böröcz/Mahua Sarkar: What is the European Union? Three Years After the «Big Bang» Enlargement – Josef Langer: Path Dependence of Future Scenarios for the European Union –Vittorio Olgiati: Legal Fictions as Constitutional Sociotechnics. A Study on EU Constructivist Legal Revisionism – Martti Muukkonen: The Power of Belief in European Welfare-Thinking – Doina Cajvaneanu: The Tower of Babel Revisited. The European Union as a Failed Speech Community – Fabio D’Andrea: Notes for Another European Culture. Italy and Dumont’s Cultural Variants – Marco Caselli: The Role of Civil Society in the Construction and Life of the European Union – Joséf Niżnik: Discourse and Social Communication. The Case of «Democracy» in the European Integration Discourse – Monika Eigmüller: Perspectives of Borders. European Legitimacy at the Periphery – Milan Jazbec: Slovenia: The Long March From Belgrade to Brussels.