Europe is imbued with a multitude of social, cultural, economic and political meanings. The authors of this comprehensive text present an authoritative yet accessible introduction to understanding Europe today, moving beyond accounts of European integration to provide a holistic and nuanced study of contemporary Europe and its historical development.
This book explores evolving definitions of Europe from antiquity, to the Cold War, right through to Europe in the midst of the Eurozone and global financial crises. By examining the different roles and meanings that Europe has held inside and outside of the continent, including the European Union's 'branding' of Europe, the text grounds its analysis in an understanding of Europes plural. Chapters explore concepts of Europe as civilization, Europe as progress, Europe as unity and Europe as diversity.
How do Europeans think of themselves and their respective national identities in a multicultural and multi-ethnic age? How has modernity and the pre- and post-industrial values of Europe affected the Europe of now and what are the political legacies of Europe? To what extent are notions of social solidarity shared across the continent? This is the first text to systematically answer these questions, and others, in order to better determine 'what is Europe?'