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Germany and the Eurozone Crisis: Between Hegemony and Domestic Politics

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This paper explores Germany’s centrality to the outcome of the eurozone crisis. It argues that the eurozone crisis has led Germany’s ordo-liberal principles to trump its other longstanding commitment – i.e. to European integration. These two principles are explored in order then to shed light on how they have played out during the crisis. German centrality has created high expectations for it to provide leadership. Exploring hegemony conceptually and in practice, it is argued that international legitimacy and increasing domestic constraints have limited a leadership role. Indeed, it is argued that it is the domestic political situation that explains why ordo-liberalism has trumped pro-Europeanism. Ordo-liberal emphasis on stability culture has provided a valuable strategic resource for securing German objectives within the eurozone while satisfying the requirements of domestic politics.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 2, 2014

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