New Book: Constructing the Limits of Europe. Identity and Foreign Policy in Poland, Bulgaria, and Russia since 1989

Dr. Rumena Filipova’s new book has been officially released and is now available in libraries and bookshops. It examines the reasons for the differential Europeanization of Central and Eastern Europe since 1989, which ultimately culminated in the Ukraine war and the energy standoff between Russia and Poland and Bulgaria.

The book asks: why have some CEE countries been better able to think along and apply European values than others? Where does Europe ‘start’ and ‘end’ and who belongs to it? Why was Poland a trailblazer in joining the EU and NATO? Why was Bulgaria more ambivalent in its Euro-Atlantic integration path? Why was Russia never able to find its place in Europe?
The book’s key argument focuses on the role that national identity and culturally-historically continuous conceptions of ‘Europe’ and ‘European-ness’ play in framing foreign policies. The author develops the Constructivist theory in International Relations.
The empirical chapters on Poland, Bulgaria and Russia are based on fieldwork in these three countries and the conduct of 75 interviews with experts and policy-makers.
Methodologically, the book advances ‘qualified post-positivism’, which aims to build bridges between positivist and post-positivist orientations.
Link to the book.