What kind of Europe the EU seeks to be, how it perceives itself and how it seeks to enact this Europe is a highly contentious issue and has powerful political stakes attached to its construction and realisation. This paper is specifically interested in how crises can constitute a compounded and expanded space for agency of political actors to forge identity narratives of the future. This paper draws on speeches by EC officials from 16 July 2019 to 7 July 2020, while coding along four analytical markers for crises as identified by Filip Ejdus (2020, p. 2, italics in original): “existence, finitude, relations and autobiography”. This article finds that while actors seek to create space for political agency by writing a moment of existential (external) crises to the EU’s project, they appear less equipped to use this moment politically. In this way, they co-construct a space potentially open to political creativity, but fail to fill this space with political creativity as to the future of the autobiographical narrative.

Pauline Heinrichs (2021) Changing realities, changing narratives? A narrative reading of EU perceptions in a changing Europe, 13(3), 13-23, https://www.esaanz.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/The-strategic-narration-of-the-future-identity-during-times-of-crises-evidence-from-the-European-Commission.pdf