When looking at the US from a European perspective a sort of paradox immediately emerges. On the one hand, the ‘American way of life’ has been penetrating in depth our everyday life and, even more, our Western culture through the music, the movies, the literature and all possible consumerist habits. But, on the other hand, all recurrent statements have been emphasizing the ‘American exceptionalism’ of political institutions, that is, how different and distant the North American institutions are from the European ones with regards to the government leadership, the relationships between existing powers, the connections with the citizens and even the very notion of democracy.
This book will not analyze the reasons of such exceptionalism. It addresses a more salient and up to date question: how much exceptionalism is today still present if we compare US democratic institutions to the European ones? In other words, has there been a convergence or are the differences still very strong and accentuated? And if there has been convergence, in what directions? Or if resilient divergences, on what aspects? Moreover, how to explain the convergence, if there has been one?
- Preface by Marcello Fantoni and Leonardo Morlino
- Leonardo Morlino, Introduction
- I. Starting from Usa
- Markus B. Siewert and Claudius Wagemann, The Quality of Democracy in the United States of America in a Comparative Perspective
- Federico Romero, The Democratic Yardstick: How the United States Transformed the Grammar of International Relations in the 20th Century
- II. Usa and Europe: Similarities and Differences
- Wojciech Sadurski, Constitutional Review in Europe and in the United States: Influences, Paradoxes, and Convergence
- Oliver Boyd-Barrett, US “Exceptionalism” in Global Media Context
- Anne C.M. Meuwese and Claudio M. Radaelli, Rulemaking and its Constitutional Consequences: EU and USA Compared
- Marco Tortora, Regional Energy Policies in the Era of the Green Economy: A Comparative Analysis
- Elena Baracani, US and EU Strategies of Democracy Promotion: Shared Strategies or a Transatlantic Divide?
- III. Narrowing the Gap?
- Sergio Fabbrini, Representation in a Union of States: An American Perspective on the European Parliament
- Gianfranco Pasquino, Primary Elections: From the USA to Italy. An Episode in Institutional Imitation
- Matteo Dian, Bridging the Gap Between Venus and Mars: Europe, the United States and Responsibility to Protect