The Passage to Europe by Luuk van Middelaar
How a Continent Became a Union

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An intriguing presentation of views seldom reported so readably and in such depth, offering a fresh new perspective to American readers.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

As financial turmoil in Europe preoccupies political leaders and global markets, it becomes more important than ever to understand the forces that underpin the European Union, hold it together and drive it forward. This timely book provides a gripping account of the realities of power politics among European states and between their leaders. Drawing on long experience working behind the scenes, Luuk van Middelaar captures the dynamics and tensions shaping the European Union from its origins until today.

It is a story of unexpected events and twists of fate, bold vision and sheer necessity, told from the perspective of the keyplayers – from de Gaulle to Havel, Thatcher to Merkel. Van Middelaar cuts through the institutional complexity by exploring the unforeseen outcomes of decisive moments and focusing on the quest for public legitimacy.

As a first-hand witness to the day-to-day actions and decisions of Europe’s leaders, the author provides a vivid narrative of the crises and compromises that united a continent. By revisiting the past, he sheds fresh light on the present state of European unification and offers insights into what the future may hold.
 

About Luuk van Middelaar

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Luuk van Middelaar is a Dutch political philosopher and currently policy advisor and speechwriter to the president of the European Council, Herman van Rompuy. His first book, Politicide, won the Prix de Paris in 1999. Since its original publication in Dutch, The Passage to Europe has won the Socrates Prize for the best Dutch philosophy book, the Prix Louis Marin of the Académie des Sciences Morales et Politiques, and the European Book Prize 2012.
 
Published May 15, 2013 by Yale University Press. 391 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Travel, Law & Philosophy, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for The Passage to Europe
All: 2 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 1

Kirkus

Good
on Jun 09 2013

An intriguing presentation of views seldom reported so readably and in such depth, offering a fresh new perspective to American readers.

Read Full Review of The Passage to Europe: How a ... | See more reviews from Kirkus

Publishers Weekly

Above average
on Aug 26 2013

Otherwise brilliant, the book suffers from the philosopher's instinct toward the abstract over the concrete. Van Middelaar writes awkwardly of the continent's citizens as an amorphous mass, referring to the creation of a "new European public that speaks in unison."

Read Full Review of The Passage to Europe: How a ... | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

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