There is a thought on Europe that goes something like this: out of common
interest there will grow a shared sense of belonging and responsibility,
and such progress, it is claimed, will eventually cause some kind of
institutional framework to cover over the fractures of this continent.
Against this there are numerous -- too numerous some say -- objections:
after the popular decision to drift away from the union by the larger of
the two islands in the North Sea (granted, there are more than two, and the
less large of them have a bit of drift in it itself, innit?) others would
follow. This scenario has not materialised. More likely it seems that a
solidification of the perspective on Europe we shall call the Federalist
Stance in the -- largely -- Western states, while the more recently joined
countries to the East -- and, to a lesser degree, to the North -- will want
a connextion that more resembles an ordinary free-trade agreement.
There's lots of if's, but's and what have you's with all of these
Our question is different -- and far more traditional than the Federalist
against Free Trade Agreement division. How is it possible, we shall ask, to
unearth a sense of Europe -- as a continent, as destiny, as people -- that
goes deeper and covers more ground literally as well as metaphorically,
than either of the approaches to Europe outlined above?
Much is at stake: can Europe continue to hold the imagination of our people
together even beyond the apparent immediacy of our current social and
Mvh. / Yours sincerely,
Torgeir Fjeld, PhD