M. Stoicheva  pp. 92-108

Abstract. The paper considers the extent to which European cultural identity can be shaped through EU cultural policy. It follows the chronology of the EU cultural policy aiming to identify its capacity to build a cultural identity for the Europe of the EU. In the same line of reasoning it attempts to find what its evolution could tell us about European identity and the potential of identification with the EU. Three periods in the historical overview of the EU cultural policy are distinguished from the beginning of the process of European integration to the adoption of the first strategy for culture, which includes a new understanding of the role of culture in the framework of EU policies. Drawing on the assumption that the cultural dimension of European identity is ‘bound’ with national identity, the dynamics of the formation and outlining of the scope of the EU cultural policy draws the attention to the cultural aspect of the understanding of European identity. The process of shaping of the EU cultural policy in the family of EU policies is inseparable from the dynamics and the awareness of the necessity of application of political instruments for formation of ‘cultural identity’ of ‘Europe of the EU’, although the main outcomes of EU action in cultural matters are limited.

Keywords: European identity, cultural identity, cultural policy, EU cultural policy, European integration, EU competences