DOI link for Introduction
This chapter examines the multidimensional and often fraught scholarly relationship between European integration and culture. It highlights how this multidisciplinary literature seeks to explore the links between culture, European integration and European governance. The chapter argues that this literature emphasises a twofold process: the role and place of culture in the process of European integration and in the establishment of the European Union’s legitimacy, as well as the impact of European integration on the emergence of a European culture and on the sustainability of national and local cultures in a context of supra-national and/or extra-European pressures. Based on a legal-institutionalist perspective, a fourth category of scholarly literature explores the relationship between European Union law, culture and identity. From a political sociology perspective, an important strand of scientific literature asks what “Europe” and “culture” mean for European governance, and it agrees that culture is one of the most complex and contested fields of European integration.