Thursday, October 28, 2010

This Spring! GS 400: Europe - Culture, Society, Politics

The name “European Union” suggests a union of European states, cultures, and identities. In many ways, this has occurred. The EU now has 27 members, 16 of which have introduced the common currency, the Euro. EU enthusiasts speak of a “Europeanization” and the development of a postnational “European identity” that will bring Europeans of different languages, faiths, and habits together under a common idea of “Europe.” Yet, if we go beyond the political and economic structures that have produced common policies in multiple areas of politics, economics, and daily life, we can identify tensions and fissures in this idea of “Europe.” Conflicts between old and new members of the EU, between East and West, between North and South, between pro- and anti-immigration voices, and between advocates and opponents of EU membership for Turkey all complicate the vision of an ever-unifying Europe. In this seminar, we will read, discuss, and view various articulations of “Europe.” We will explore the complexities of cultures and identities in Europe. We will also critically approach various recent appraisals of Europe and the European Union project. Students at junior level or above from ANY major are eligible to take this course. Questions? Email Dr. David Johnson or call 256-824-6288.