Spain in the European Union: A qualitative study of national identity

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Journal of Cultural Studies

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This article focuses on Spanish interpretations of the European integration process. Based on extensive use of primary sources and interviews, the article examines perceptions of national identity, nationalism and people’s cultural attachment to the European Union (EU). It discusses the diversity of opinions among the different political parties, labor unions, business leaders and lay citizens regarding the organization of the EU. The study is located in the cultural studies approaches that attempt to describe the complexity and interdependence of political, economic and ideological structures. It shows that the EU is as much about representation and cultural meanings as it is about political economy. In addition, this research shows that national identity is reconstituted, maintained, internalized and reproduced in social processes that involve confrontations and competing interests in the EU. Finally, it reveals that the EU has thus far not contributed to superseding the prominence of the nation-state and nationalism and has not decisively engaged the Spanish populace to support a federal Europe.


The version of record can be found through SAGE Journals.