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European Identity and the Challenge of Enlargement. Jean Monnet/Robert Schuman Paper Series Vol. 5 No. 31 September 2005

Thiel, Markus. (2005) European Identity and the Challenge of Enlargement. Jean Monnet/Robert Schuman Paper Series Vol. 5 No. 31 September 2005. [Working Paper]

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    [Introduction]. As a citizen of Germany, I have seen the transformation initiated through German unification first-hand and am well aware of the multifaceted challenges facing political systems that gain additional entities. After more than 15 years, Germany is still deeply affected by disparities that mark not only the economic and political realities of Western and Eastern Germans, but also (maybe most importantly), their differences concerning a common national identity. A new 'gesamtdeutsche' identity is only very slowly evolving and has to overcome issues of historical differences, political representation and social cohesion. Similarly, the process of EU enlargement - the widening aspect of European integration - has to deal with similar obstacles. Last year’s monumental enlargement is still high on the agenda of European policy-makers and their constituents and already, more successive enlargements are planned influencing the course of future integration today, as can be seen in the debate surrounding the ratification of the EU constitution and the role Turkey’s accession plays in it. Therefore, the question to what extent old and new member states in the EU are willing and able to transform their transnational European identity is of utmost importance for the future of the Union. In this paper, I will first lay out some theoretical aspects of the term and then look at some of the issues surrounding the necessitated change in identification with Europe, arguing that if the Union is to retain their citizen's approval, it will have to decide how 'civic' and diverse it wants to become and communicate these objectives more clearly to its constituents.

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    Item Type: Working Paper
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > europeanisation/europeanization & European identity
    EU policies and themes > Treaty reform > enlargement
    Countries > Germany
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > University of Miami, Florida-EU Center of Excellence > Jean Monnet/Robert Schuman Paper Series
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2008
    Page Range: p. 12
    Last Modified: 15 Feb 2011 17:52

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