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The Italian Left and the European Integration

carlo giuseppe Cirulli
IMT Institute for Advanced Studies, Lucca
carlo giuseppe Cirulli
IMT Institute for Advanced Studies, Lucca
Open Panel

Abstract

The present paper deals with the evolution of the Italian Left vis-à-vis the development of the European integration process. The puzzle will be that of seeing: 1) how and why there is a shift in the way Italian Left looks at the European Union, by moving from an anti-European view to a more “open-constructive” approach and by becoming at the end the most pro-European party in Italy; 2) which impact does the European Union have on the evolution of the Italian Left. In other words, to which extent the current crisis of Italian Left (and more in general of European Continental Left) is related with the European integration process? 3) Which similarities and differences are there between Italian Left and French Left towards the EU? The rationale behind the choice of the following topic as subject of the present work is based mainly on two reasons: 1) there is very few literature devoted to the analysis of the history of the Italian Left in the light of the European Union process. The reasons why it changed its attitude towards Europe, with particular reference to the impact of that choice on its identity, have not been studied into depth; 2) Moreover, a comparative study based on the examination of the Italian case and the French case will reveal all its utility in singling out some fundamental issues related with the way Italian Left related itself to Europe. The first part of the present work will be devoted to the main steps of the Italian Left evolution from the anti-European phase to the current situation where it represents the most pro-European party in the Italian political scenario. The second part will enrich the analysis of some issues, arising from the first part of the work, by comparing the case of Italian Left with that of French Left.