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Freitag, 27. Februar 2015

David Abulafia: The EU is in thrall to a historical myth of European unity. As Britain prepares to renegotiate its relationship with the European Union, historians must speak out against the false vision of 'inevitable' unification

"The events of the last few months have exposed serious shortcomings in the idea of a European demos. The current unwillingness of German creditors and Greek debtors to see eye to eye exposes the lack of solidarity at the heart of Europe. Far from making integration inevitable, the decisions of European leaders have pulled Europeans further apart.

It is time to admit that a sense of 'Europeaness' cannot be traced far back in time. Europe is not on myth but many myths, myths rooted in an idealusation of the classical past and in fantasies about figures such as Charlemagne. Attempts to create an artificial notion of 'Europe' distract from the reality of the situation and make it harder to rectify the many problems that exist within the EU's institutions."