Dr. Rumena Filipova’s new book “Constructing the Limits of Europe. Identity and Foreign Policy in Poland, Bulgaria and Russia since 1989” is announced in the Columbia University Press Spring catalog (p.84). Release date: 30 April 2022.
The author extends her special thanks to the editor Dr. Andreas Umland, foreword authors Professor Harald Wydra (Cambridge) and Dr. Gergana Yankova-Dimova (Oxford/IGA co-founder) , blurb reviewers Professor Mark N. Katz (George Mason) and Professor Neil MacFarlane (Oxford).
The book is informed by the key question that has defined Rumena Filipova’s studies, work and personal queries: why have Central and East European countries diverged so starkly in their political, economic and foreign policy trajectories since the collapse of communism? Why have Poland, Bulgaria and Russia, in particular, exhibited three distinct patterns of integration into the Euro-Atlantic community? The answer the book gives is rooted in identity: the reenactment in post-1989 circumstances of continuous, culturally-historically bound conceptions of Europe based on CEE’s distinct national and sub-regional identities has shaped their foreign policy behavior.
Through this argument the book:
– makes a case for a reinvigorated focus on the role of ideational factors in International Relations, especially through a renewed conceptualization of Constructivism.
– puts forward a middle-ground methodology that builds bridges between positivist and post-positivist orientations – a divide which has haunted the social sciences.
– suggests that re-imagining Europe nowadays can start by looking at the experience of CEE over the past three decades and the recognition of the many visions of “Europe” that have characterized the process of drawing the boundaries of the European family of nations.