The Unpatriotism of the Economic Constitution? Rights to Free Movement and their Impact on National and European Identity

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Abstract:

Abstract: 

Instead of the political reading of the EU Constitution adopted by advocates of constitutional patriotism, this article examines the European economic constitution. The four single market freedoms can be used by the Court of Justice to strike down Member State laws which represent deeply held aspects of national cultural identity. The article examines whether the court does in fact act in this way and proceeds to argue that the issue of identity protection does not stop with the court. In those policy areas where the court is more interventionist, and its case-law is perceived as an identity threat, one is likely to find binding Treaty-based derogations. Where, in contrast, the effect of the court's case-law poses less of a threat, one is more likely to see non-binding declarations. The article examines a number of policy areas in which specific cultural derogations and declarations are to be found, including abortion, property acquisition, football and alcohol control.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0386.2007.00410.x

Affiliations: Professor of Law, University of Reading, UK.

Publication date: March 1, 2008

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