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Macmillan Higher Education Palgrave Higher Education

The European Union and Global Capitalism

Origins, Development, Crisis

ISBN 9781403997524
Publication Date December 2016
Formats Hardcover Paperback 
Publisher Palgrave
Series The European Union Series

This book draws on critical theory to introduce readers to ways of exploring questions about the EU from a political economy perspective, questions like: Does the EU help or hinder Europe's 'social models' to face the challenges of globalization? Does the EU represent a break from Europe's imperial past? What were the causes of the Eurozone crisis?

Magnus Ryner is Professor of International Political Economy at King's College London, UK.

Alan Cafruny is Henry Platt Bristol Professor of International Affairs at Hamilton College, USA.

1. Traditional Narratives: Traditional theory
2. Critical Political Economy
3. The Single Market: Consolidating neoliberalism
4. Origins and Development of EMU: Money and finance in the European Union
5 The Welfare State: Whither the social dimension
6. Core and Periphery in an Enlarged European Union
7. The American Challenge Revisited: The lengthening shadow of U.S. hegemony
8. The European Union, the Global South, and the Emerging Powers
Conclusion: The ordo-liberal iron cage.


‘This book engages European Union theory, history and policy from a critical political economy perspective. It succeeds both in reviewing the EU's past turbulent passage and surveying the stormy waters the EU now must navigate. All readers will benefit from the authors' depth of knowledge and sweep of vision.’ – Peter Katzenstein, Cornell University, USA
‘The European project is in deep trouble. This book is a must read for anyone who wants to understand how it got there, and to fully appreciate the depth and breadth of the EU’s multiple crises. Drawing on a long tradition of critical scholarship, Cafruny and Ryner present a trenchant account of how the European project has become trapped in an ordoliberal iron cage from which there is no easy escape.’ – Dorothee Bohle, European University Institute, Italy
‘Sweeping in its ambition and hugely impressive in its execution, this lucid, important and timely book will become compulsory reading for all scholars and students working in the areas of political economy and EU studies. We have long needed a book that properly situates the European Union within an analysis of the shifting global political economy. Cafruny and Ryner have delivered on that promise spectacularly well and in so doing have produced a book that combines scholarly virtue with the production of a crisp and critical central thesis…’- Ben Rosamond, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
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