Introduction: Beyond Euro-optimism and skepticism

  • Jan Zielonka
Part of the St Antony’s Series book series


This book is about Europe’s apparent inability to cope with a complex international environment. The focus is not on trade and economics, where the Union is a strong and dynamic actor, but on security, diplomacy, and politics, where the Union is paralyzed. In the 1991 Maastricht Treaty, the European Union proclaimed its ambition to set up a common foreign and security policy (CFSP). Its institutional framework was quickly created, but the common policies envisaged by the Treaty hardly ever get off the ground. The question is: why? Why does the Union fail to live up to the letter and spirit of the Treaty and its broad political expectations? In the search for answers to this basic question the arguments presented in this book draw upon various intellectual schools, academic disciplines and political traditions. I also deal with many issues that are not on the usual EU agendas. Thus, this book is not only about the Union and its institutions but also about culture, identity, democracy, and power politics in present-day Europe. It is not merely about procedures of foreign policy-making, but also about conceptual challenges facing states and politicians. Nor is it simply about instruments of defense and diplomacy, but about ways of justifying and legitimizing common European endeavors. Although the book focuses on the awkward acronym, CFSP, it is in fact about the broader subject of European politics and the changing nature of international relations.


Foreign Policy International Relation Security Policy International Politics Maastricht Treaty 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Jan Zielonka 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Zielonka
    • 1
  1. 1.European University InstituteFlorenceItaly

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