The End of Europe

Author: James Kirchick
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 9780300218312
Release Date: 2017-03-03
Genre: Political Science

The disintegration of Europe's post-Cold War consensus in the face of anti-Semitism, populist nationalism, and territorial aggression

The End of Europe

Author: James Kirchick
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 9780300227789
Release Date: 2017-03-07
Genre: History

Once the world’s bastion of liberal, democratic values, Europe is now having to confront demons it thought it had laid to rest. The old pathologies of anti-Semitism, populist nationalism, and territorial aggression are threatening to tear the European postwar consensus apart. In riveting dispatches from this unfolding tragedy, James Kirchick shows us the shallow disingenuousness of the leaders who pushed for “Brexit;” examines how a vast migrant wave is exacerbating tensions between Europeans and their Muslim minorities; explores the rising anti-Semitism that causes Jewish schools and synagogues in France and Germany to resemble armed bunkers; and describes how Russian imperial ambitions are destabilizing nations from Estonia to Ukraine. With President Trump now threatening to abandon America's traditional role as upholder of the liberal world order and guarantor of the continent's security, Europe may be alone in dealing with these unprecedented challenges. Based on extensive firsthand reporting, this book is a provocative, disturbing look at a continent in unexpected crisis.

Democracy in Europe

Author: Larry Siedentop
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231123760
Release Date: 2001
Genre: History

Why do smokers claim that the first cigarette of the day is the best? What is the biological basis behind some heavy drinkers' belief that the "hair-of-the-dog" method alleviates the effects of a hangover? Why does marijuana seem to affect ones problem-solving capacity? Intoxicating Minds is, in the author's words, "a grand excavation of drug myth." Neither extolling nor condemning drug use, it is a story of scientific and artistic achievement, war and greed, empires and religions, and lessons for the future. Ciaran Regan looks at each class of drugs, describing the historical evolution of their use, explaining how they work within the brain's neurophysiology, and outlining the basic pharmacology of those substances. From a consideration of the effect of stimulants, such as caffeine and nicotine, and the reasons and consequences of their sudden popularity in the seventeenth century, the book moves to a discussion of more modern stimulants, such as cocaine and ecstasy. In addition, Regan explains how we process memory, the nature of thought disorders, and therapies for treating depression and schizophrenia. Regan then considers psychedelic drugs and their perceived mystical properties and traces the history of placebos to ancient civilizations. Finally, Intoxicating Minds considers the physical consequences of our co-evolution with drugs--how they have altered our very being--and offers a glimpse of the brave new world of drug therapies.

Fractured Continent Europe s Crises and the Fate of the West

Author: William Drozdiak
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 9780393608694
Release Date: 2017-09-12
Genre: Political Science

An urgent examination of how the political and social volatility in Europe impacts the United States and the rest of the world. The dream of a United States of Europe is unraveling in the wake of several crises now afflicting the continent. The single Euro currency threatens to break apart amid bitter arguments between rich northern creditors and poor southern debtors. Russia is back as an aggressive power, annexing Crimea, supporting rebels in eastern Ukraine, and waging media and cyber warfare against the West. Marine Le Pen’s National Front won a record 34 percent of the French presidential vote despite the election of Emmanuel Macron. Europe struggles to cope with nearly two million refugees who fled conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa. Britain has voted to leave the European Union after forty-three years, the first time a member state has opted to quit the world’s leading commercial bloc. At the same time, President Trump has vowed to pursue America First policies that may curtail U.S. security guarantees and provoke trade conflicts with its allies abroad. These developments and a growing backlash against globalization have contributed to a loss of faith in mainstream ruling parties throughout the West. Voters in the United States and Europe are abandoning traditional ways of governing in favor of authoritarian, populist, and nationalist alternatives, raising a profound threat to the future of our democracies. In Fractured Continent, William Drozdiak, the former foreign editor of The Washington Post, persuasively argues that these events have dramatic consequences for Americans as well as Europeans, changing the nature of our relationships with longtime allies and even threatening global security. By speaking with world leaders from Brussels to Berlin, Rome to Riga, Drozdiak describes the crises. the proposed solutions, and considers where Europe and America go from here. The result is a timely character- and narrative-driven book about this tumultuous phase of contemporary European history.

The Despot s Accomplice

Author: Brian Klaas
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780190668013
Release Date: 2017-04-01
Genre:

For the first time since the end of the Cold War, the world is steadily becoming less democratic. The true culprits are dictators and counterfeit democrats. But, argues Klaas, the West is also an accomplice, inadvertently assaulting pro-democracy forces abroad as governments in Washington, London and Brussels chase pyrrhic short-term economic and security victories. Friendly fire from Western democracies against democracy abroad is too high a price to pay for a myopic foreign policy that is ultimately making the world less prosperous, stable and democratic. The Despot's Accomplice draws on years of extensive interviews on the frontlines of the global struggle for democracy, from a poetry-reading, politician-kidnapping general in Madagascar to Islamist torture victims in Tunisia, Belarusian opposition activists tailed by the KGB, West African rebels, and tea-sipping members of the Thai junta. Cumulatively, their stories weave together a tale of a broken system at the root of democracy's global retreat.

Europe s Growth Challenge

Author: Anders Aslund
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780190499204
Release Date: 2016-12-12
Genre:

In the wake of the Great Recession, Europe's economy has stagnated to a considerable degree-greater even than that of the United States. Forecasts suggest an abysmal annual growth rate of about one percent over the next five years, and it now appears that Europe's enviable structural features, that is, their superior social safety net, leading educational facilities, and outstanding infrastructure will be in jeopardy if higher levels of growth cannot be achieved in the mid- to long-term. Several European countries have sought to stimulate growth through monetary or fiscal means, but in the view of some economists, this focus on the demand side ignores the need to address supply issues. In Europe's Growth Challenge, Anders Aslund and Simeon Djankov show how countries in Central and Eastern Europe have recently adopted economic policies that could prove useful in expanding business and economic activity in Western and Southern Europe. These include reducing the financial role of the state, adjusting tax systems, improving the environment for startups, and easing controls over labor markets and migration policies. The Netherlands, they note, has already introduced humane pension reforms that could be adopted more broadly on the continent. The authors also outline how sectoral changes in the service market, high-tech development, and energy markets, more successfully pursued in the U.S., could profit many European countries. Authors Anders Aslund and Simeon Djankov conclude with a call for crucial continental institutional reforms at the European Commission of the European Union, the European Parliament, and the European Council of Ministers. If enacted, this bold program may be just what is needed to reinvigorate the slumping European economy.

After Europe

Author: Ivan Krastev
Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press
ISBN: 9780812249439
Release Date: 2017-05-08
Genre: Political Science

In this provocative book, renowned public intellectual Ivan Krastev reflects on the future of the European Union—and its potential lack of a future. With far-right nationalist parties on the rise across the continent and the United Kingdom planning for Brexit, the European Union is in disarray and plagued by doubts as never before. Krastev includes chapters devoted to Europe's major problems (especially the political destabilization sparked by the more than 1.3 million migrants from the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia), the spread of right-wing populism (taking into account the election of Donald Trump in the United States), and the thorny issues facing member states on the eastern flank of the EU (including the threat posed by Vladimir Putin's Russia). He concludes by reflecting on the ominous political, economic, and geopolitical future that would await the continent if the Union itself begins to disintegrate.

Europe s Last Chance

Author: Guy Verhofstadt
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 9780465096862
Release Date: 2017-01-03
Genre: Political Science

In the heart of Europe's current crisis, one of the continent's foremost statesmen issues a clarion call to radically remake the European Union in the mold of the United States' own federal government Europe is caught in its greatest crisis since the Second World War. The catalog of ills seems endless: an economic crisis spread through most of Europe's Mediterranean tier that has crippled Greece and driven a wedge between northern and southern Europe; terrorist attacks in Paris, Cologne, Brussels, and Nice; growing aggression from Russia in Ukraine and the Baltic states; and refugees escaping war-torn neighbors. The European Union's inability to handle any of these disasters was a driving factor in Great Britain voting to leave, and others may soon follow. The result won't just be a continent in turmoil, but also a serious threat to American and British security-the Atlantic, let alone the Channel, simply isn't big enough to keep European troubles in Europe. For everyone's sake, Europe must survive. The question is how. In Europe's Last Chance, Guy Verhofstadt-former prime minister of Belgium and current leader of the liberal faction in the European Parliament-provides the essential framework for understanding Europe today, laying bare the absurdity of a system in which each member state can veto legislation, opt in or out of the Euro, or close borders on a whim. But Verhofstadt does not just indict the European Union, he also offers a powerful vision for how the continent can change for the better. The key, argues Verhofstadt, is to reform the European Union along the lines of America's federal government: a United States of Europe strong enough to stand with the United States of America in making a better, safer world. A visionary book from one of today's luminaries of European leadership, Europe's Last Chance is a clarion call to save the European Union, one of the world's greatest chances for peace and prosperity.

European Politics

Author: Paul Kubicek
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 9781317206378
Release Date: 2017-07-04
Genre: Political Science

European Politics surveys the history, institutions, and issues that are essential for understanding contemporary European politics. Exploring a central question—"what is Europe?"—this text's thematic approach helps students compare politics in individual countries and see the political big picture in the region. European Politics examines not only countries already in the European Union but also those eligible to join to give students the most comprehensive picture of Europe's evolution in a globalized world. Key changes for the new edition: Fully revised and updated to include coverage of recent elections, public opinion data and key topics such as refugees, Russia and Ukraine, Syria, more on the economic crisis, and Brexit; Expanded and revised opening chapter explaining Europeanization, multi-level governance, and the fissures in Europe; Greater and updated coverage of theory, multi-culturalism, and the EU. This timely, in-depth text will be essential reading for anyone interested in European politics.

In Defence of Europe

Author: Loukas Tsoukalis
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780191071232
Release Date: 2016-06-16
Genre: Political Science

Europe has not been so weak and divided for a long time. Buffeted by a succession of crises, it has shown a strong collective survival instinct but a poor capacity to deliver. In times when the tectonic plates are shifting and tension between global markets and national democracies is rising, can Europe hold together, under what termsand indeed for what purpose? The euro crisis has left big scars and is not over yet. Economic divergence has grown between and within countries, leading in turn to political fragmentation and the rise of populism. And growth remains slow, fragile, and uneven. Europe is in a bind: it is difficult to go forwards and scary to go backwards. In between, it is an unhappy and unstable state of affairs. Looking further afield, a more assertive Russia and an imploding neighbourhood may not even allow Europe the luxury to decline in grace. A convinced European and familiar with the world of Brussels, Loukas Tsoukalis is critical of the way Europe has handled its multiple crises in recent years. He addresses the key issues and difficult choices facing Europe today. Can Europe collectively manage globalization, combine growth with inclusive societies, and reconcile its apparent yearning for soft power with the often hard reality of the world outside? Individual countries cannot handle these challenges on their own. While knowing full well the difficulties in reaching a common European stance, Tsoukalis is also acutely aware of the consequences of failure.

I Know Best

Author: Roger L. Simon
Publisher: Encounter Books
ISBN: 9781594038068
Release Date: 2016-06-14
Genre: Political Science

In 1979, Christopher Lasch published the epochal The Culture of Narcissism warning of the normalizing of narcissism in our society. Lasch may have understated it. 35 years later, in the Obama era—with its parade of endless, often inexplicable, scandals—we have a full blown epidemic of what has recently been called Moral Narcissism. Forget Narcissus and his reflection, Moral Narcissism—the almost schizophrenic divide between intentions and results now pervading our culture—is the new method for feeling good about yourself. It no longer matters how anything turns out as long as your intentions were good, that you were “moral.” And, just as importantly, the only determinant of those intentions, the only one who defines that morality, is you. I Know Best goes beyond Lasch to lay bare how this moral narcissism is behind all those scandals from Obamacare to the Veteran's Administration to the IRS, Benghazi, Bergdahl, Syria and beyond. Everything the Obama administration did and does was about making them feel good about themselves—the results be damned. And they have as their allies those supreme moral narcissists in the academy, media and Hollywood, ever willing to ratify those good intentions and ignore those same results. But I Know Best is not just about the Left. Moral Narcissism affects the right as well, even when they don’t realize it. It is a true epidemic that must be cured in order to save our democratic republic and our futures.

Four Princes

Author: John Julius Norwich
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
ISBN: 9780802189462
Release Date: 2017-04-04
Genre: History

John Julius Norwich—“the very model of a popular historian” (Wall Street Journal)—is acclaimed for his distinctive ability to weave together a fascinating narrative through vivid detail, colorful anecdotes, and captivating characters. Here, he has crafted a bold tapestry of Europe and the Middle East in the early sixteenth century, when four legendary rulers towered over the era. Francis I of France was the personification of the Renaissance, and a highly influential patron of the arts and education. Henry VIII, who was not expected to inherit the throne but embraced the role with gusto, broke with the Roman Catholic Church and appointed himself head of the Church of England. Charles V was the most powerful industrious man of the time, and was unanimously elected Holy Roman Emperor. Suleiman the Magnificent—who stood apart as a Muslim—brought the Ottoman Empire to its apogee of political, military, and economic power. Against the vibrant background of the Renaissance, these four men collectively shaped the culture, religion, and politics of their respective domains. With remarkable erudition, John Julius Norwich delves into this entertaining and layered history, indelibly depicting four dynamic characters and how their incredible achievements—and obsessions with one another—changed European history.

The Pursuit of Power

Author: Richard J. Evans
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 9780241295779
Release Date: 2016-09-01
Genre: History

ECONOMIST BOOKS OF THE YEAR 2016 'A scintillating, encyclopaedic history, rich in detail from the arcane to the familiar... a veritable tour de force' Richard Overy, New Statesman 'Transnational history at its finest ... .. social, political and cultural themes swirl together in one great canvas of immense detail and beauty' Gerard DeGroot, The Times 'Dazzlingly erudite and entertaining' Dominic Sandbrook, The Sunday Times A masterpiece which brings to life an extraordinarly turbulent and dramatic era of revolutionary change. The Pursuit of Power draws on a lifetime of thinking about nineteenth-century Europe to create an extraordinarily rich, surprising and entertaining panorama of a continent undergoing drastic transformation. The book aims to reignite the sense of wonder that permeated this remarkable era, as rulers and ruled navigated overwhelming cultural, political and technological changes. It was a time where what was seen as modern with amazing speed appeared old-fashioned, where huge cities sprang up in a generation, new European countries were created and where, for the first time, humans could communicate almost instantly over thousands of miles. In the period bounded by the Battle of Waterloo and the outbreak of World War I, Europe dominated the rest of the world as never before or since: this book breaks new ground by showing how the continent shaped, and was shaped by, its interactions with other parts of the globe. Richard Evans explores fully the revolutions, empire-building and wars that marked the nineteenth century, but the book is about so much more, whether it is illness, serfdom, religion or philosophy. The Pursuit of Power is a work by a historian at the height of his powers: essential for anyone trying to understand Europe, then or now.

Far Right Politics in Europe

Author: Jean-Yves Camus
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674971530
Release Date: 2017-03-20
Genre: History

Jean-Yves Camus and Nicolas Lebourg’s critical look at the far right throughout Europe reveals a prehistory and politics more complex than the stereotypes suggest and warns of the challenges it poses to the EU’s liberal-democratic order. These movements are determined to gain power through legitimate electoral means, and they are succeeding.

Why the UK Voted for Brexit

Author: Andrew Glencross
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 9781137590015
Release Date: 2016-10-26
Genre: Political Science

This book studies the unprecedented decision of 23 June 2016, which saw the UK electorate vote to leave the EU, turning David Cameron’s referendum gamble into a great miscalculation. It analyzes the renegotiation that preceded the vote, before examining the campaign itself so as to understand why the government’s strategy for winning foundered. It then evaluates the implications that this decision has for the country’s international relations as well as for its domestic politics. The author’s final reflections are on the political philosophy of Brexit, which is founded on a critique of representative democracy. Yet the use of direct democracy to trigger EU withdrawal leaves the supposedly sovereign British people at an impasse. For it is up to the people’s representatives to negotiate the terms of Brexit. By engaging with a highly charged political debate in an accessible and non-partisan manner this book will appeal to a broad readership of academics, policy-makers, journalists, and interested citizens.