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The EU, NATO and the Integration of Europe
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  • 1 b/w illus. 32 tables
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 (ISBN-13: 9780511056437 | ISBN-10: 0511056435)

Why did Western European states agree to the enlargement of the EU and NATO? Frank Schimmelfennig analyzes the history of the enlargement process and develops a theoretical approach of 'rhetorical action' to explain why it occurred. While rationalist theory explains the willingness of East European states to join the NATO and EU, it does not explain why member states decided to admit them. Using original data, Schimmelfennig shows that expansion to the East can be understood in terms of liberal democratic community building. Drawing on the works of Jon Elster and Erving Goffman, he demonstrates that the decision to expand was the result of rhetorical action. Candidates and their supporters used arguments based on collective identity, norms and values of the Western community to shame opponents into acquiescing to enlargement. This landmark book makes an enormous contribution to theory in international relations and to the study of European politics.

• Offers a comprehensive analysis of one of the defining processes of post-Cold War European politics: Eastern enlargement • It develops a unique theoretical approach to the analysis of international institutions and negotiations - rhetorical action • It engages in the major current debate in the field of International Relations (rationalism versus constructivism) and offers a synthetic approach to the study of international institutions


List of figures; List of tables; Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations; Introduction; Part I. Security, Power or Welfare? Eastern Enlargement in a Rationalist Perspective: 1. Rationalist institutionalism and the enlargement of regional organizations; 2. NATO enlargement; 3. EU enlargement; Conclusion: the rationalist puzzle of Eastern enlargement; Part II. Expanding the Western Community of Liberal Values and Norms: Eastern Enlargement in a Sociological Perspective: 4. Sociological institutionalism and the enlargement of regional organizations; 5. Eastern enlargement and the Western international community; 6. The event history of enlargement; Conclusion: the sociological solution to the enlargement puzzle; Part III. Association Instead of Membership: Preferences and Bargaining Power in Eastern Enlargement: 7. Process hypotheses; 8. State preferences and the initial enlargement process; Conclusion: the double puzzle of Eastern enlargement; Part IV. From Association to Membership: Rhetorical Action in Eastern Enlargement: 9. Rhetorical action; 10. The decision to enlarge NATO; 11. The decision to enlarge the EU; Conclusion: solving the double puzzle of Eastern enlargement; Strategic action in international community: concluding remarks; Appendix (interviews); List of references; Index.


'… the book provides valuable information for people interested in two major theories of international relations in practice. … Schimmelfennig gives a deep insight in the process and the outcomes of NATO and EU enlargement as such and develops a theoretical approach that seems applicable to future Western organizations' enlargement decisions.' Steve Schwarzer, European Societies

'… this study is a significant and valuable contribution to the rationalist-constructivist debate in IR'. International Affairs

'Frank Schimmelfennig has steadily been making a name for himself over the years as a thoughtful and creative contributor to International Relations theory and European Studies. This work will confirm his status as a scholar of originality and insight. … this book is a model of problem-driven but theoretically informed social science. It is thorough and systematic in its treatment of the subject matter; explicit in its theoretical assumptions; and incorporates new empirical data. … an important and timely book. … His book deserves to be widely read and discussed.' European Foreign Affairs Review

'… a rich volume offering many insights. It is a credible effort to tease out something new from the examination of the two major theoretical schools of thought in IR. This book is recommended for every student of European integration theories who seeks to bridge the rationalist-constructivist divide while gaining further insights into the enlargement issue.' Journal of International Relations and Development

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