A Europe “To Come”–or Not?

Last fall while I was working on my new book Jacques Derrida: Live Theory (Continuum, due to appear in the Live Theory series late this summer), I was most intrigued to go back to some of Derrida’s thoughts on the “idea” of “Europe” offered back in the late 80s and early 90s, as the idea of the EU was coming together. There Derrida spoke of an “other Europe” and a “Europe open to the other” as a “Europe to come.” (Recent waves of xenophobia across Europe would seem to indicate Europe, rather than opening itself to the other, has become fixated with shutting its doors.) There Derrida wondered aloud about the possibility of France’s leadership in this new Europe.

So it is with some interest that I’m watching this week’s key votes on the EU Constitution in France and the Netherlands, though I confess to not yet having formed any strong position on the matter. But for a very helpful entree into the Constitution, which utlizes web technology very well to highlight the points of debate, see the constitution feature created by Le Monde.