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Normative power as hegemony

Normative power as hegemony This article identifies four key problems in the debate about normative power Europe that may be fruitfully tackled when linking it to the concept of hegemony: the debate about whether EU foreign and external policy is driven by norms or interests; the problem of inconsistent behaviour as a result of competing and contested norms; the question of the role of state and non-state actors in EU foreign and external policy; and the problematic standing of normative power as an academic engagement, in particular in regard to whether the theory is of primarily explanatory, descriptive or normative value. The author suggests that the concept of hegemony may address these problems. First, it combines norms and interests, thus transcending the divide that has resulted in endless debates about the EU’s standing as a normative power. Second, hegemony does not start from a pre-given set of norms with fixed meanings, but rather puts the struggles about these norms at centre stage, thus seeing inconsistencies not as undermining but as part and parcel of normative power. Third, hegemony expands our understanding of the actors involved in the construction and exercise of normative power, thus bringing not only Member States but also social forces in a much broader sense into the picture. Finally, hegemony reorientates the debate about normative power so as to reinstate the critical purpose that the concept was supposed to have from the start. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Cooperation and Conflict SAGE

Normative power as hegemony

Cooperation and Conflict , Volume 48 (2): 17 – Jun 1, 2013

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References (88)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© The Author(s) 2013
ISSN
0010-8367
eISSN
1460-3691
DOI
10.1177/0010836713485387
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article identifies four key problems in the debate about normative power Europe that may be fruitfully tackled when linking it to the concept of hegemony: the debate about whether EU foreign and external policy is driven by norms or interests; the problem of inconsistent behaviour as a result of competing and contested norms; the question of the role of state and non-state actors in EU foreign and external policy; and the problematic standing of normative power as an academic engagement, in particular in regard to whether the theory is of primarily explanatory, descriptive or normative value. The author suggests that the concept of hegemony may address these problems. First, it combines norms and interests, thus transcending the divide that has resulted in endless debates about the EU’s standing as a normative power. Second, hegemony does not start from a pre-given set of norms with fixed meanings, but rather puts the struggles about these norms at centre stage, thus seeing inconsistencies not as undermining but as part and parcel of normative power. Third, hegemony expands our understanding of the actors involved in the construction and exercise of normative power, thus bringing not only Member States but also social forces in a much broader sense into the picture. Finally, hegemony reorientates the debate about normative power so as to reinstate the critical purpose that the concept was supposed to have from the start.

Journal

Cooperation and ConflictSAGE

Published: Jun 1, 2013

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