Unity in Adversity

EU Citizenship, Social Justice and the Cautionary Tale of the UK

By Charlotte O'Brien

The EU is at a crossroads of constitution and conscience. Unity in Adversity argues that EU market citizenship is incompatible with a pursuit of social justice, because it contributes to the social exclusion of women and children, promotes a class-based conception of rights, and tolerates in-work poverty. The limitations of EU citizenship are clearest when EU nationals engage with national welfare systems, but this area has been neglected in EU legal research. Unity in Adversity draws upon the ground-breaking EU Rights Project, which works first hand with EU nationals in the UK to provide advice and advocacy, to give ethnographic insight into the process of navigating EU and UK welfare law. Its study of EU law in action is a radical new approach, and the case studies illustrate the political, legal, and administrative obstacles to justice faced by EU nationals. Taken together, the strands demonstrate that 'equal treatment' for EU nationals is an illusion. The UK's welfare reforms directed at EU nationals are analyzed as a program of declaratory discrimination and, in light of the subsequent referendum, should be treated as a cautionary tale-both to the EU, to take social justice seriously, and to other Member States, to steer away from xenophobic law-making. Revised Dissertation. *** "In this important contribution to the analysis and construction of European Union citizenship, Charlotte O'Brien provides her characteristic blend of rigorous legal scholarship and compelling social vision. She identifies challenging questions about the relationship between justice and vulnerability that should concern the shaping of law at all levels of governance." --Professor Niamh Nic Shuibhne, University of Edinburgh *** "Piercing the veil of well-known proclamations of 'equality' and 'non-discrimination', in this intimate portrait of Union law O'Brien sounds a sobering wake up call. ...The sooner we dispel the oxymoronic myth of a 'market citizen' as a necessary tool of the uniquely benevolent EU internal market project, the sooner the process of healing the Union turning its back on the majority of Europeans can begin. This book is an important part of this beginning. --Professor Dimitry Kochenov, University of Groningen *** "Doctrinal mastery. Intellectual rigour. Conceptual depth. Empirical enrichment. O'Brien's landmark text offers its readers all of these qualities..." --Professor Michael Dougan, University of Liverpool (Series: Modern Studies in European Law, Vol. 80) [Subject: European Law, EU Law, Immigration Law, Human Rights Law, Socio-Legal Studies, UK Law, Social Security & Welfare Law]


Publication Date: 11/30/2017
Format: Cloth
ISBN: 9781849467193