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Recent efforts by the United States and its allies to promote democracy, security, and stability in the Middle East owe much to the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership (EMP) - also known as the Barcelona Process - an important region-building plan in the Mediterranean region since 1995. The Convergence of Civilizations represents the output of an innovative and much needed collaborative project focused on the EMP. Editors Emanuel Adler, Beverly Crawford, Federica Bicchi, and Rafaella A. Del Sarto have set out to show that regional security and stability may be achieved through a cultural approach based on the concept of regional identity construction, and aim to take stock of the EMP in relation to this goal. The contributors to this collection focus on the obstacles Mediterranean region construction faces due to post 9/11 regional and global events, the difficulties of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, tensions between the EU and the US over Iraq, and the expected consequences of EU enlargement. They also seek to bring the EMP and region-making practices to the attention of American scholars in order to promote a more fertile academic exchange. Ultimately, the contributors demonstrate that the EMP and related region-making practices, while failing so far to promote the development of a Mediterranean regional identity and to achieve regional stability, suggest nonetheless a viable model for regional partnership and cooperation, and thus, for preventing a 'clash of civilizations' in the long haul. The Convergence of Civilizations will be an important tool for meeting the current global challenges being faced by nation-states as well as those in the future.
University of Toronto Press
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