This book deals with the fundamental semantics of images of Europe, which consist of valences, mirror beliefs and affectivities. This is why it relaunches the importance of the European discourse in its symbolic dimension. As such, it explores the many images of Europe, or rather the many images through which European discourse is actually constituted in daily life, in search of their enunciative responsibility in today’s world for determining the current “State of the Union”. The identity of the European continent is based on a millenary tension between universalism and particularism: images of Europe have in fact been alternately inspired, over the centuries, by a model of homogeneity – Roman and Carolingian imperial disposition – on the one hand, and by a model of fragmentation – a Europe of city-states, municipalities, regions and small fatherlands – on the other. In the European Union, a political and economic organism, this issue has recently been amplified to the point that it has reentered public debate, and political parties that are only recognizable for being Europeanists or anti-Europeanists are now ubiquitous. In this regard, one major bone of contention is how to portray the quintessential aspects of the European territory, which are either interpreted as “thresholds” to be overcome in the name of a model of United Europe – “integral totality” – or are instead regarded as insurmountable obstacles for a Europe that is irreparably and perhaps, according to anti-Europeanists, fortunately fragmented – “partitive totality”. Further, this is to be done without excluding the possibility of contradictory and complementary solutions to these binary visions. In this context the book analyzes various texts in order to obtain a more precise picture of the clash, reveal its semiotic forms, and by doing so, identify a way out of the crisis.With contributions by Maria Cristina Addis, Giuseppe Bettoni, Valeria Burgio, Simona Chiodo, Erik Gordy, Frank Jacob, Francesco Mangiapane, Tiziana Migliore, Federico Montanari, Claudio Paolucci, Paolo Peverini, Davide Puca, Monica Sassatelli, Franciscu Sedda, and Lucio Spaziante.
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