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This book focuses on one of the most highly charged relationships of the Euro crisis, that between Greece and Germany, from 2009 to 2015. It explores the many ways in which Greeks and Germans represented and often insulted one another in the media, how their self-understanding shifted in the process, and how this in turn affected their respective appraisal of the EU and that which divides us or keeps us together as Europeans. These stories illustrate the book’s broader argument about mutual recognition, an idea and norm at the very heart of the European project. The book is constructed around a normative pivot. On one hand, the authors suggest that the tumultuous affair between the two peoples can be read as “mutual recognition lost” through a thousand cuts. On the other, they argue that the relationship has only bent rather than broken down, opening the potential for a renewed promise of mutual recognition and an ethos of “fair play” that may even re-source the EU as a whole. The book’s engaging story and original argument may appeal not only to experts of European politics and democracy, but also to interested or emotionally invested citizens, of whatever nationality.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

Chapter 1. The Setting: The Greco-German Affair on the Euro Stage

Abstract
This opening chapter introduces the object of the book’s empirical enquiry, referred to somewhat playfully as ‘the Greco-German affair’ during the Greek debt crisis. The authors discuss their methodology and the relevant literature and explain the import of the concept of mutual recognition for their study. Even after the devastating impact of the Euro crisis, they argue, the EU’s transnational set-up remains distinctive in its tentative move towards a demoicracy, which entails an ongoing experimentation with the promise and limits of mutual recognition, and with the challenge of building binding trust among the European peoples.
Claudia Sternberg, Kira Gartzou-Katsouyanni, Kalypso Nicolaïdis

Chapter 2. The Players: Greeks vs Germans

Abstract
Chapter 2 explores the multifaceted ways conjured up by Greeks and Germans to represent each other in the newspaper coverage of the Greek debt crisis. It is structured around five thematic patterns, each exhibiting a different kind of entanglement between the images of the Self and the Other: the emergence and contestation of the stereotypes of lazy but merry Greeks versus hard-working and miserly Germans; the different ‘moral languages’ invoked on each side; the psychosocial undercurrents of identifying the Other with one’s own innermost demons; the politics and manipulation of memory; and the topoi of power and resistance.
Claudia Sternberg, Kira Gartzou-Katsouyanni, Kalypso Nicolaïdis

Chapter 3. The Name of the Game: Shaping Europe Through Self and Other

Abstract
Chapter 3 moves on from the book’s two central characters to the overall game in which their fraught relationship is embedded. How has the Greco-German saga affected the rest of the EU story? More specifically, how have the mutual ascriptions of Greeks and Germans affected their representations of the EU, and how has their perception of the EU game evolved as a result? The chapter discusses, in particular, the narratives of the EU’s promise of prosperity, turned into a threat thereof during the crisis; the ‘re-nationalisation’ of politics in Europe; and the fate of ‘the EU as an agent of progress’.
Claudia Sternberg, Kira Gartzou-Katsouyanni, Kalypso Nicolaïdis

Chapter 4. The Ethos of the Game: Recovering the Promise of Mutual Recognition

Abstract
In this concluding chapter, the authors attempt to draw some lessons from the ‘affair’ while calling on each reader to draw their own. They ask, in particular, how we may learn to better live together in the EU and how an ethos of mutual recognition might be recovered from the wars of stereotypes and mutual ascription discussed in the book. They argue that we must start by becoming more aware of how we construct ourselves and others and how the two are intimately related. They also point to how, by engaging with each other’s internal controversies, Greeks and Germans learned about themselves, too, and were led to question long-held prejudices. The question is left open as to whether this prolonged engagement through conflict will help us to develop bonds of trust and recover the promise mutual recognition, not only between Greeks and Germans but also among other Europeans.
Claudia Sternberg, Kira Gartzou-Katsouyanni, Kalypso Nicolaïdis

Backmatter

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