An Ever Closer Union Among the Peoples of Europe: A Critical Legal History
A talk by Hannah Eklund (University of Copenhagen)
This presentation will interrogate the drafting of the Treaty of Rome of 1957 from the point of view of the colonial politics of the time. The Treaty of Rome established the European Economic Community, which in later treaty iterations becomes the European Union of today. This presentation will reflect on the ways in which the legal categories chosen in 1957 to define the nascent project of European integration may be traced and related to the unravelling of the colonial political power of the EEC Member States. Special attention will be given to the formulation of the most famous phrase of EU law; to lay the foundations of an ever closer union among the peoples of Europe. Why was ‘people’ chosen over ‘citizens’ or ‘states’? How does ‘people’ relate to the other categories that define individuals in the Treaty of Rome, namely ‘workers’ and ‘inhabitants’ of the oversees countries and territories? This presentation forms part of the Marie Curie project An Ever Closer Union Among the Peoples of Europe: A Critical Legal History (EPoCH), which started in February 2021.
Hanna Eklund is Assistant Professor of Constitutional Law at the Faculty of Law of Copenhagen University. She was previously a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Sciences Po Law School in Paris and holds a Ph.D. in European Law from the European University Institute (EUI) in Florence (2016).
In 2020 she was awarded a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship for the project ‘An Ever Closer Union Among the Peoples of Europe: A Critical Legal History (EPoCH)’, which deals with colonialism and socio-economic stratification in European integration. This project will be carried out in collaboration with the Centre for the Study of Nationalism at the Faculty of Humanities of Copenhagen University (2021-2023).