EU identity in a Westphalian and multicultural context

Arantza Gómez Arana*

*Corresponding author for this work

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The development of an EU identity should be supported by a legal framework to be able to justify its legitimation. Following the work of Ian Manners on normative power, this paper discusses the links between key aspects of EU values such as solidarity and human rights in a context where supporters of nation-states and Westphalian views of states have recently dominated European politics. This has had a a direct impact (or lack of) on the promotion of multiculturalism. This paper takes Greece as an example of how the EU's approach towards this country could have been a display of solidarity and promotion of human rights but it missed the opportunity. One of the reasons for favouring a more utilitarian approach could be linked to the lack of sense and belonging to the EU society as a consequence of the barriers created by strong feelings of nationalism attached to European states and nations together with a lack of promotion of multiculturalism. It is argued that a more multicultural society could benefit from the creation of an EU identity and consequently, the creation of an EU society, EU policies, and potentially, the avoidance of future European crisis such as the one created with Brexit.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-285
Number of pages17
JournalCuadernos Europeos de Deusto
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 27 Feb 2019
Externally publishedYes


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