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54 J. Common Mkt. Stud. 3 (2016)

handle is hein.journals/jcmks54 and id is 1 raw text is: 


JCMS 2016 Volume 54. Number 1. pp. 3-18


Another Theory is Possible: Dissident Voices in Theorising

Europe*

IAN MANNERS  and RICHARD WHITMAN2
'University of Copenhagen. 2University of Kent

Abstract
The article argues that dissident voices which attempt to theorise Europe differently and advocate
another European trajectory have been largely excluded and left unheard in mainstream discus-
sions over the past decade of scholarship and analysis. Dissident voices in European Union studies
are those that seek to actively challenge the mainstream of the study of Europe. The article briefly
examines  the discipline of mainstreaming, then surveys the extent of polyphonic engagement in
EU  studies, before setting out how the special issue contributors move beyond the mainstream.
The  article will argue the merits of more polyphonic engagement  with dissident voices and
differing disciplinary approaches for the health and vitality of EU studies and the EU policy field
itself. It summarises the special issue's argument that by allowing for dissident voices in theorising
Europe, another Europe, and another theory, is possible - indeed, probable.

Keywords:  European Union; European integration; theory; mainstream; dissident voices; crises

Introduction:  Dissident  Voices

The  past decade  has witnessed  the opening  of a yawning   chasm  between   scholarly at-
tempts to theorise European  union  and the political realities of the EU (European Union)
in crisis. The decade that has witnessed the ascendency of political systems analysis, neo-
liberal assumptions of efficiency and Europeanisation  studies within Europe has also seen
the failure of intergovernmental attempts to reform the EU, economic  crisis across Europe
and a collapse in popular support for the European project, as seen in the European Parlia-
ment  elections. Dissenting voices that attempt to theorise Europe differently and advocate
another European   trajectory have been  largely excluded and  left unheard in mainstream
discussions over the past decade  of scholarship and analysis. Mainstream  EU  scholarship
broadly accepts the premise  that the EU is a neoliberal, state-like political system and that
Europeanisation  is a one-way  process. As Mads  Jensen  and Peter Kristensen (2013)  have
demonstrated,  a few  core journals, in particular JCMS  and JEPP   (Journal  of European
Public  Policy), constitute the key nodal  points for EU  communication practice where
network  analysis shows  a clear political science hegemony.
   Dissident voices in EU  studies are those that seek to actively challenge the mainstream
of the study of Europe on these grounds. While the mainstream  of EU  studies may consider
itself 'pluralist', this self-reading only makes  sense  within  a narrow   conception  of

*The authors are very grateful to the anonymous reviewers and all the participants at the EWIS Izmir workshop (May
2014); UACES Annual Conference, Cork (September 2014); CEP Research Seminar, Copenhagen (September 2014);
Danish European Studies Association, Aarhus (September 2014); the University of Kent Workshop (January 2015);
European Research Seminar Series, University of Cambridge (February 2015); and EUSA Fourteenth Biennial
conference (March 2015) for their helpful comments on earlier drafts.


2015 The Author(s) JCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/jcms.12332

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