Political Theory of the European Union

ISBN : 9780199587308

Jurgen Neyer; Antje Wiener
288 Pages
163 x 241 mm
Pub date
Nov 2010
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Debate about the theory underpinning the nature, workings, and development of the European (EU) has in many ways been hampered in recent years by an intellectual divergence in the two main ways that the EU is conceptualized. On the one hand is a political science and comparative government oriented strand that sees the EU as a political system in its own right. On the other is the international relations tradition which conceptualizes it as another international organization. Alongside this, the EU itself has developed a significant constitutional dimension. Indeed, the debate surrounding the 'Constitutional Treaty' presented several challenges to our capacity to grasp the normative change of this non-state polity. Despite the eventual contestation of the EU's 'constitutional turn' through the French and Dutch no-votes and the cumbersome procedure of ratifying the Lisbon Treaty in their aftermath, debates about the EU's constitutional quality have not ceased. In the light of these developments, the editors of this volume, along with their distinguished contributors, have attempted to create a more decisively interdisciplinary theoretical approach to studying the EU within the wider world-political context. The volume brings together scholars in a range of disciplines across the social sciences to offer, not a complete theory, but rather a theoretical approach combining different stands of political and legal theory. The book's aim is to inspire further engagement with the central tenets of political authority and world order, sovereignty and constitutional change and democracy and justice, in the context of the EU's political development.


1. Introduction: The State of the Art of a Non-State-Oriented Political Theory
2. Empire Europe: Statehood and Political Authority in the Process of Regional Integration
3. Un-National Normative Justification for European Union Foreign Policy
4. A State-Less Vanguard for a Rightful World Order
5. Surface and Depth: The EU's Resilient Sovereignty Question
6. How Does European Union Law Fit into the World of Public Law? Costa, Kadi, and Three Conceptions of Public Law
7. Politics, Power, and a European Law of Suspicion
8. Europe's Justice Deficit: Justification and Legitimacy in The European Union
9. The Promise of 'Demoi-Cracy': Democracy, Diversity, and Domination in the European Public Order
10. Non-State Oriented Political Theory: A Critical Assessment
11. Conclusion: Through Uncharted Waters of Constitutional Quality: Navigating Between Modern Statehood and International Organisation

About the author: 

Jurgen Neyer was appointed to the Chair of Political Science at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder) in April 2006 where he is currently also Managing Director of the Frankfurt Institute for Transformation Studies. Before coming to Frankfurt he was a Professor of International Relations at the Johann-Wolfgang-Goethe University of Frankfurt (Main) (2005-06) and the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich (2004). He obtained his Habilitation at the University of Bremen in 2002 and his PhD in Political Science at the Johann-Wolfgang-Goethe University in 1996. He has done research at various universities including the University of California at Berkeley, the Free University of Berlin and the European University Institute in Florence, Italy.; Antje Wiener was appointed to the Chair of Political Science and Global Governance at the University of Hamburg in April 2009 where she is currently also Managing Director of the Centre for Globalisation and Governance. Before coming to Hamburg she was a Professor of Politics and International Relations at the University of Bath (2007-09) and a Professor of International Studies at the Queen's University of Belfast where she had worked since 1999. She obtained her PhD in Political Science at Carleton University, Canada in 1996, and an MA in Political Science at the Free University of Berlin in 1989, and has taught at various universities including Stanford University, Sussex University, Carleton University, and the Free University of Berlin. She has held visiting fellowships at the Science Centre for Social Research in Berlin and at the Hanse Institute for Advanced Studies in Delmenhorst, Germany.

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