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Politics of European Union
Date:2017-12-25   Hits:

P W Preston


Course Objectives:

The European Union (EU) is one of the three major economic, social and political regions of the global system; the EU is a major trading partner with the USA and East Asia. The EU has expanded territorially from a small group of western European countries and now encompasses most of the countries of eastern and western Europe. In the east its major neighbour is Russia; in the southeast its major neighbour is Turkey (and the Middle East); and to the south are the Arab region of North Africa and the Sub-Saharan Africa. The EU has an elaborate institutional mechanism of governance. EU level activities interact routinely with nation state level activities. The main elements are the Commission, Parliament and Court of Justice (executive, legislature and judiciary). These machineries have grown slowly; their character has been debated by social scientists; the future development of these institutions is hotly contested; and their relationship with national machineries of governance is similarly contested.

The course will discuss the following key issues:

(i) the sequence of early twentieth century crises in Europe;

(ii) the drive to reconstruction in Europe and the creation of the European Union;

(iii) the role and character of the machinery of the European Union; and

(iv) the European Union in the post-cold war global system.

Lecture Course Outline:

[1] Introduction

[2] Europe and the modern world

[3] General crisis and the idea of the European Union

[4] Establishing the institutions of the European Union

[5] Institutions

[6] Core Europe

[7] Newer Europe

[8] Eastern Europe

[9] Europe: Criticism and reform

[10] Europe: new problems

Useful textbooks and journals

A. Blair 2005 The European Union Since 1945, London, Longman

T. Bale 2005 European Politics: A Comparative Introduction, London, Palgrave

T. Judt 2005 PostWar: A History of EuropeSince 1945, London, Penguin

Journal of Common Market Studies

Journal of European Integration

EU main web site: http://europa.eu.int/index_en.htm

 
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