Tsoukalis, Loukas, (2011), ‘The Shattering of illusions – And What Next?’, Journal of Common Market Studies, Annual Lecture, Volume 49, Issue Supplement 1, pages 19–44, September 2011.
The European Union (EU) entered the new century on a wave of euroenthusiasm. Many people were convinced that integration was running fast
again, and the process would be unstoppable. Some went further, predicting that the 21st century would be the century of Europe, and many more were
ready to believe them.1 It was too good a prospect to dismiss lightly. For the fainthearted, and those with a more sceptical, or just narrowly utilitarian,
approach to European integration, it was of course all rather threatening. They felt they were being swept aside. They were in a minority, not strong enough
to resist the wave of euro-enthusiasm, but always alert to take advantage of any future change in the direction of the wind. And the opportunity eventually
did come their way.