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We, the People of Europe?: Reflections on Transnational Citizenship

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Étienne Balibar has been one of Europe's most important philosophical and political thinkers since the 1960s. His work has been vastly influential on both sides of the Atlantic throughout the humanities and the social sciences. In We, the People of Europe?, he expands on themes raised in his previous works to offer a trenchant and eloquently written analysis of "transnatio Étienne Balibar has been one of Europe's most important philosophical and political thinkers since the 1960s. His work has been vastly influential on both sides of the Atlantic throughout the humanities and the social sciences. In We, the People of Europe?, he expands on themes raised in his previous works to offer a trenchant and eloquently written analysis of "transnational citizenship" from the perspective of contemporary Europe. Balibar moves deftly from state theory, national sovereignty, and debates on multiculturalism and European racism, toward imagining a more democratic and less state-centered European citizenship. Although European unification has progressively divorced the concepts of citizenship and nationhood, this process has met with formidable obstacles. While Balibar seeks a deep understanding of this critical conjuncture, he goes beyond theoretical issues. For example, he examines the emergence, alongside the formal aspects of European citizenship, of a "European apartheid," or the reduplication of external borders in the form of "internal borders" nurtured by dubious notions of national and racial identity. He argues for the democratization of how immigrants and minorities in general are treated by the modern democratic state, and the need to reinvent what it means to be a citizen in an increasingly multicultural, diversified world. A major new work by a renowned theorist, We, the People of Europe? offers a far-reaching alternative to the usual framing of multicultural debates in the United States while also engaging with these debates.


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Étienne Balibar has been one of Europe's most important philosophical and political thinkers since the 1960s. His work has been vastly influential on both sides of the Atlantic throughout the humanities and the social sciences. In We, the People of Europe?, he expands on themes raised in his previous works to offer a trenchant and eloquently written analysis of "transnatio Étienne Balibar has been one of Europe's most important philosophical and political thinkers since the 1960s. His work has been vastly influential on both sides of the Atlantic throughout the humanities and the social sciences. In We, the People of Europe?, he expands on themes raised in his previous works to offer a trenchant and eloquently written analysis of "transnational citizenship" from the perspective of contemporary Europe. Balibar moves deftly from state theory, national sovereignty, and debates on multiculturalism and European racism, toward imagining a more democratic and less state-centered European citizenship. Although European unification has progressively divorced the concepts of citizenship and nationhood, this process has met with formidable obstacles. While Balibar seeks a deep understanding of this critical conjuncture, he goes beyond theoretical issues. For example, he examines the emergence, alongside the formal aspects of European citizenship, of a "European apartheid," or the reduplication of external borders in the form of "internal borders" nurtured by dubious notions of national and racial identity. He argues for the democratization of how immigrants and minorities in general are treated by the modern democratic state, and the need to reinvent what it means to be a citizen in an increasingly multicultural, diversified world. A major new work by a renowned theorist, We, the People of Europe? offers a far-reaching alternative to the usual framing of multicultural debates in the United States while also engaging with these debates.

30 review for We, the People of Europe?: Reflections on Transnational Citizenship

  1. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Hammer

    I picked up this book entirely for his chapter "Europe after communism." The book was published in 2004 and I had hoped for a relatively recent reflection on changing European ideological currents since 1989. Instead, it turns out this chapter was a lecture he gave in 1991, when almost no time had passed in order to develop some critical distance. Other than that disappointment, Balibar offers a few interesting points on citizenship and universality in Europe. He is under-specific on many points, I picked up this book entirely for his chapter "Europe after communism." The book was published in 2004 and I had hoped for a relatively recent reflection on changing European ideological currents since 1989. Instead, it turns out this chapter was a lecture he gave in 1991, when almost no time had passed in order to develop some critical distance. Other than that disappointment, Balibar offers a few interesting points on citizenship and universality in Europe. He is under-specific on many points, however, and much of what excited me about this book were his descriptions of things other scholars are doing with ideas of citizenship and nation, rather than his own.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Bailey Miller

  3. 4 out of 5

    Irene Tait

  4. 4 out of 5

    david

  5. 5 out of 5

    Janneke

  6. 5 out of 5

    Tara

  7. 5 out of 5

    Melike Torumtay

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tyler Adkins

  9. 4 out of 5

    Fatbirdsdontfly

  10. 4 out of 5

    Jason

  11. 4 out of 5

    Bradley

  12. 4 out of 5

    Vix

  13. 5 out of 5

    Eric Raupp

  14. 4 out of 5

    Leora DeFlumere

  15. 4 out of 5

    Charles Santiago

  16. 5 out of 5

    Christiaan

  17. 4 out of 5

    Mattias Grahn

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan Hurley

  19. 5 out of 5

    Dustmotes

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jelena Petrovic

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ericka

  22. 4 out of 5

    Carmen

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ali

  24. 4 out of 5

    Tamara

  25. 4 out of 5

    Anthie

  26. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

  27. 5 out of 5

    Ivana Maksic

  28. 5 out of 5

    Chrisgee

  29. 5 out of 5

    Yusuf Yücel

  30. 5 out of 5

    Ian Sullivan

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