Inventing Europe: idea, identity, reality. Front Cover. Gerard Delanty. Macmillan, – History – Bibliographic information. QR code for Inventing Europe. I{ETlllNKlNC IRTSH HISTORy (with patrick O’Mahony). Inventing Europe. Idea, Identity, Reality. Gerard Delanty. Senior LÄ›crurer in Sociology. U niversity of Liver . Inventing Europe: Idea, Identity, Reality, Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke,

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Europeanism generally signified some notion of political unitybe it that of the Holy Leagucsand alliances of Christendom, the Concert of Europe or the European Union. It was the Germans, who by aping the Carolingians. Yet something can be discerned in the greatflux of history and it is not the unity of history but adversity: According to Hayp. Chapter 9 is addressed to the implication of the collapse of the Cold War consensus for the idea of Europe.

You may think that he abuses a bit of making everything fit into his thesis, but it’s undeniable that the book provides a great account of European history through the lenses of what Europe has meant for European society since the age of the ancient empires. When we contemplate the vast range of invehting, monographs and political manifestos that all bear the word Europe in their titles, it is difficult to deny that there is an element of mystification in the idea of Europe.

[ Gerard Delanty] Inventing Europe 1995

It was a siege mentality, an identity born in eurpoe, not in victory. Only by means of a commitment to a post-national European citizenship can the idea of Europe be divested of its cultural ambivalence. This was not surprising because Christianity, with which Europe was usu- ally associated, was not a territorially unified culture. Curio 1DuroselleFoersterGollwitzerHeatherde Rougement and Voyenneto mention the more significant ones.

Full text of “[ Gerard Delanty] Inventing Europe “

Isocrates, however, in the fourth century bc constructed an identi- fication of Europe with Greece and Asia with Persia Hay. In comparison to China it was technologically backward Needham, Virgil’s great epic poem. From its origin as an Asiatic cult it became the imperial ideology of Rome and finally evolved to be the universal and legitimating myth of medieval Christendom under the aegis of the German Reich. The notion of Europe subsequently came to designate the western part while the idea of the Empire came to refer to the Byzantine east, the Orient Fischer,p.

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Up until the six- delsnty century there were several world-sy stems, of which the European was relatively insignificant Braudel, Though I am principally concerned with Europe as an idea, it is important to see clearly the three levels of analysis that are involved in the wurope of the ‘invention ofEurope’.

Ekrope is important that these minimal conditions be separated from the idea of Europe.

Inventing Europe: Idea, Identity, Reality

Muslim Spain, in particular Cordoba and Toledo, was important inventihg transmitting Islamic cul- ture to Europe in the period after the Reconquest. A Theoretical Introduction 7 intellectual modalities of power through which Europe is constituted as a strategic reality and a subject of knowledge. The thirteenth century rcconquest of Spain consolidated these developments and by the early invenring century the Mediterranean was once again, after some five centuries, recovered for Christian traders.

Konstans rated it it was ok Dec 12, With expansion in the East for a time closed off, the lands beyond the seas provided room for European expansionary zeal. In this period western Europe was undermined by a process of frag- mentation resulting from population movement and the decline of the Roman Empire. Between about and 1 a whole new civilisational pattern based upon feudal- ism expanded as far west as Ireland and as far east as Jerusalem, inventingg with it a uniform society Bartletl, The Seljuk victory over the Byzantines at the Battle of Manzikcrt in won them most of Anatolia and precipitated four centuries of crusades.

Nevertheless, I do hope that the book will be of interest to the specialised historian for the theoretical perspectives and broader context it offers. Sentences such as “The idea of civilization did not survive into the Twentieth Century” are blatantly wrong.

In other words, then, ‘European’ identity, as an cthno-cultur- al and political project, preceded the formation of the idea of Europe as such. Europe as an idea, identity and as a reality. The thesis I should like to propose, then, is that it is important that the idea of Europe be separated from Universal ethical validity claims disguised as an essential ist ethno-culturalism.

Christianity was europr ‘ European iscd’ from the eighth century onwards. Europe and Asia were merely geographical terms while Greece and Persia were cultural-polit- ical terms. As the central and organising metaphor of a complex civilisation, the European idea expresses our culture’s struggle with its contradictions and conflicts. This was to prove an enduring distinc- The Origins of the Idea of Europe 19 tion and still remains one of the geographical definitions of Europe.


In this transformation Europe no longer signified a geographical area but a system of values. That Christendom as an expression was itself such a relatively late development – il was not in common usage until the eleventh century – we should not be surprised to find that delaanty idea of Europe was an even later invention.

It has been a fact of European history that every attempt made to unite the continent occurred alter a period oi major division. I definetely enjoyed the reading.

Open Preview See a Problem? From the early third century the notion of a Christian age had been established as the basis of historical chronology, while Islam established its own system of dating after the death of Muhammad in Herrin. By this fmean the violence that is contained in a cultural world-view which claims to be in possession of a single universal truth.

Medieval Europe consisted of some political entities, including duchies, bishoprics, principalities and city states Tilly, Macro-i dentities, such as the European idea, the national id ea or religious wor ld-views, are more commonly divisive than unifying and are frequently products ot eniorced and violent rTomoee nisation.

Invariably in these works Europe is some kind of self-positing spiri- tual entity that unfolds in history and never needs to be explained.

So, Occident and Orient evolved to refer to the two halves of the Roman Empire. Even the great humanists of the Renaissance were conscious of the increased importance of the Sublime Porte over the Holy See.

In the ninth century the Vikings pressed southwards, the Magyars advanced from the cast and the Muslims from the south.