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1989, bringing in a global Europe?

1989, der Beginn eines globalen Europas?
[working paper]

Delcour, Laure

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Abstract Whilst 1989 is widely acknowledged as a watershed in international relations, it is also regarded as a major upheaval in the course of European integration since its very beginning in the 1950’s. The nature of this regard, however, has overwhelmingly been univocal. The relationship between 1989 and the EU is commonly considered as a one-way process, with communism being finally “dissolved” into EU integration. Moreover, changes in the European integration process since 1989 have often been analyzed per se; there have been few attempts, if any, to connect 1989 and the EC/EU in a comprehensive way. The paper questions the unambiguous, linear and one-way character of the prevailing interpretations relating to the impact of 1989 on the European integration process. Through highlighting and discussing several dialectical trends, it sheds light on complex, multifaceted and open processes which call for re-assessing the impact of 1989 on Europe and the way the European Union has influenced 1989 and “managed” post-1989. It concludes that while the EU has been a major vector of change in CEE countries, 1989 has also induced wide-ranging, profound and long-term transformations on the European integration process, the exact impact of which is still difficult to assess. The EU picture resulting both from 1989 and from the choices made in the 1990’s is thus much more blurred and ambivalent.
Keywords European integration; EU expansion; neighborhood; cross-border cooperation; communism; political change; USSR; democratization; joining the European Union
Classification European Politics
Method descriptive study
Free Keywords 1989; European integration process; enlargement; Europe à la carte; "transition"; border; neighbourhood; soft power; civilian power
Document language English
Publication Year 2008
City Berlin
Page/Pages 20 p.
Series Working Paper Series of the Research Network 1989, 22
Status Published Version; not reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works