Audio, American Enterprise Institute, October 16, 2008.
On both sides of the Atlantic, “citizenship” is the subject of vital and often contentious policy debates. In the United States, a nation famously founded on a creed rather than blood ties, the question of what it means to be an American citizen has always been central to the country’s self-understanding, and the citizenship question is closely tied to salient political debates over immigration, naturalization, and “identity politics.” European countries and the European Union (EU) wrestle with (at least) equally profound questions. Given that there is no European citizenship in any robust sense, can it be constructed–and if so, how and on what basis? Can there be democratic European institutions without European citizens? Should formerly sovereign nations tolerate Islamic law in some domains, perhaps on the principle that allows EU members to maintain their own laws on cultural and other matters–or would that step further compromise the promise of a common European identity and citizenship?
Prominent scholars, jurists, journalists, and policymakers from Europe and the United States will discuss these and related questions in a two-day conference sponsored by the AEI Legal Center’s Transatlantic Law Forum (TLF), an AEI joint venture with the Germany-based Council on Public Policy. The TLF provides a forum for scholars, lawyers, policymakers, journalists, and the interested public to deepen the understanding of constitutionalism and constitutional democracy in Europe and in the United States.
American Enterprise Institute