CALLIGARO O. - The Symbolic Construction of European Union (25h)

Professor: Oriane CALLIGARO      Academic Assistant: Hanna CORSINI

This course introduces students to an understudied dimension of European integration – the construction of a European imagined community – and reflects on categories too often used uncritically such as ‘Europe’, ‘European identity’, or ‘European culture’. Posing the question as to whether ‘Europeanization’ can be forged by cultural and symbolic means, it examines the relevance of history, heritage, remembrance, and representations attempting to foster of a European sense of belonging among citizens and to strengthen the EU’s political legitimacy.

In order to understand how ideas of European union are being constructed and put into practice, this course draws on social theory, cultural history, and politics and more specifically:

  • explores the different strategies implemented to construct Europe symbolically in several policy domains (culture, education, memory, communication, symbols, etc.);
  • analyses the content attributed to the concepts of ‘Europe’, ‘European identity’ or ‘European culture’ in these initiatives (are criteria historical, geographical, civilizational, political, etc.?);
  • determines the actors involved and their respective agendas (different EU institutions, other European organizations such as the Council of Europe, transnational experts, private entrepreneurs, etc.).

ECTS card

Academic year
2021 - 2022
First semester
Course type
Compulsory courses
ECTS Points