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Limits of cultural engineering: actors and narratives in the European Parliament's House of European History Project

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Concerned about the EU’s apparent lack of cultural legitimacy, EU institutions have increasingly engaged in the transnational politics of history to enhance European identity and foster EU legitimacy. The House of European History museum project in Brussels marks a high point in the European Parliament’s history politics. Based on document analysis and interviews, an analysis of the project’s origins and evolution highlights the narrow limits of cultural engineering from above, by EU institutions, however. The constraining dissensus in EU politics has forced the European Parliament to rely entirely on the curators and professional historians to legitimize its museum as one that conforms to prevailing curatorial and historical standards. As a result, the first permanent exhibition differs markedly from the original plan. Its narrative has become East Europeanized and the history of European integration proper has been marginalized.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)518-534
JournalJournal of Common Market Studies
Volume55
Issue number3
Early online date3 Oct 2016
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2017

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  • Journal of Common Market Studies (Limits of Cultural Engineering)

    Rights statement: This is a peer-reviewed version of the following article Kaiser, Wolfram (2016), Limits of cultural engineering: actors and narratives in the European Parliament's House of European History Project. JCMS, which has been published in final form at DOI: 10.1111/jcms.12475. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

    Accepted author manuscript (Post-print), 414 KB, PDF-document

    Due to publisher’s copyright restrictions, this document is not freely available to download from this website until: 3/10/18

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