By M. Sassatelli
During this major intervention into the educational and institutional debate on ecu cultural id, Monica Sassatelli examines the identity-building intentions and results of the ecu Capital of tradition programme, and in addition appears on the paintings of the Council of Europe and the recent ecu panorama conference.
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Extra resources for Becoming Europeans: Cultural Identity and Cultural Policies
This is, in short, the canon in which scholars have looked for the embodiment of the idea of Europe in history. Europe is contemporaneously thematized as a place, a history, a concept and a subjectivity, as the many visual images of Europe clearly demonstrate, from the very long tradition of representations of the abduction of Europa to anthropomorphic maps, where the continent takes on the shape of a powerful queen (Wintle, 1996b; Passerini, 2002). In other words, Europe is given an historical continuity which, although created through the juxtaposition of discrete and heterogeneous elements, results in a teleological tension leading to modern European institutions.
Instead, in European Studies, approaches under the label of neofunctionalism claim that political uniﬁcation can only be the effect of gradual economic integration, which leads over time to uniﬁcation in other ﬁelds, thanks to the so-called spill-over effect (Haas, 1958; George, 26 Becoming Europeans 1985). Neofunctionalism, the one to be translated into a concrete dominant politics, and leading to the creation of the economic and monetary union, has also shown its inner limits, precisely as the spill-over does not seem to lead in any substantial way from economic and monetary to political and, above all, cultural integration.
This is the relevant element that we need to concentrate on, this use as an instrument of legitimization, this re-functionalization (that is also, notably, a selection), and its particular modalities. This applies even more to the second phase, that of contemporary studies. If analyses elaborated in the 1950s and early 1960s were the expression of a context in which European institutions were still more an ideal than a reality, since the 1980s, in connection with a new phase in European integration after a period of stagnation in the previous decade, the politico-institutional situation is radically different.
Becoming Europeans: Cultural Identity and Cultural Policies by M. Sassatelli