chapter  14
Postcolonial sovereignty games with Europe in the margins: The Netherlands, the Antilles, and Europe
Pages 14

The Kingdom of the Netherlands is trans-Atlantic, uniting a mid-sized European country with six tiny Caribbean islands, the remnants of a once-impressive colonial empire. In order to understand how this Kingdom relates to the European Union (EU), we should first explore how and why its constituent parts still cling together. The first section of this chapter therefore outlines the decolonization of the Dutch colonial empire, focusing on its remarkable outcome, the persistence of non-sovereign polities in the Antilles. The next part discusses the Statuut, the constitution of the Kingdom. Moving to contemporary politics, the third section analyses the highly contested rhetoric, process, and outcome of the recent restructuring of the trans-Atlantic Kingdom and the role allotted to the EU in the debates. The conclusion questions whether the Green Paper might change the parameters of the debate anytime soon and offers some reflections about the status quo.