Europe is currently experiencing a hiatus in its process of political unification, and the constitutional project actively pursued in recent years is faltering. The expansion drive aimed at new member states is accompanied by a progressive weakening of Europe's institutions. This book, however, addresses the problem of Europe's identity in the long term: It attempts to map out the changing relationship among its various components and the interplay between attachment to the past and attempts at leaving it behind. Downplaying the overworked myth concerning the alleged "roots" or "essence" which could assure Europe's permanence over time, the author tries to show that Europe has always been, and is still, a product of many processes, and how its identity has emerged from an ever-changing configuration of historical events. This identity, far from being stable, is bound to be subject to additional extensive transformations, as it has been in previous centuries.
Pietro Rossi taught History of Philosophy and Philosophy of History at the University of Turin.