The European Union is an unprecedented form of state. Initially founded to provide security and promote wealth in Europe, it has become a global economic power and poses a challenge to the hegemony of the USA and to the increasing might of Russia and China. Internal divisions, in terms of claims for different varieties of capitalism, in the European Union are considered, as well as the conflicts that have arisen from enlargement and foreign policy concerns. Leading specialists on European politics and society reflect on the nature of consensus and competition between elites, and whether the EU may be able to provide a sense of common identity and purpose for its citizens. The book will appeal to students of politics, international relations and sociology and to anyone interested in current developments in Europe.