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The liminal European: subject to the EU legal order

De Witte, Floris ORCID: 0000-0001-8068-7110 (2022) The liminal European: subject to the EU legal order. Yearbook of European Law, 40. 56 - 81. ISSN 0263-3264

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Identification Number: 10.1093/yel/yeab006


This contribution suggests that recent changes to EU free movement law have led to the emergence of a new type of subject: the liminal European. This subject is deemed to deserve the protection of EU law, in terms of the rights of residence and equal treatment in the host state, only when she is economically productive and socially adaptive. These changes pose a fundamental challenge to the authority of the EU, whose legal order is premised on its ability to challenge domestic processes of subjugation, exclusion, and precarity, which it is now, instead, starting to perpetuate. Being European is increasingly a status that is deeply precarious and conditional: a transitory state that is bestowed on rather than inhabited by the European. This notion of liminality is not only a useful descriptive category with which to analyse recent changes in EU free movement law. It also comes with significant normative implications for the EU and its legal order.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2021 The Author
Divisions: Law
Subjects: J Political Science > JV Colonies and colonization. Emigration and immigration. International migration
J Political Science > JZ International relations
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
Date Deposited: 02 Aug 2021 09:33
Last Modified: 07 Apr 2024 17:33

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