Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf? Rethinking the core and periphery in the Eurozone crisis

Dooley, Neil (2019) Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf? Rethinking the core and periphery in the Eurozone crisis. New Political Economy, 24 (18). pp. 62-88. ISSN 1356-3467

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Recent literature on the eurozone crisis has begun to rethink those explanations of its origins that rely on narratives stressing the ‘immaturity’ of political and economic governance in the countries of the European periphery. These narratives are typically challenged by frameworks which understand the eurozone as a region characterised by a ‘beggar-thy-neighbour’ hierarchy between the economic growth of Germany, which leads to precarious, ‘financialised’ growth in the periphery. Yet, this article shows that core–periphery scholarship is unable to adequately challenge the immaturity thesis due to its preoccupation with German ‘victimisation’ of the European periphery. By exploring country-specific direction of trade and capital lending statistics, I shows that there is little basis for the argument that Germany is to blame for the origins of the eurozone crisis in the individual countries of the European Periphery. This article shows that by bringing core–periphery analysis into dialogue with Comparative Political Economy, a critical approach to the Eurozone crisis can be developed which leaves behind the myth of the German ‘big bad wolf’. Instead, I show that imbalances between the core and periphery are a product of a flawed construction of the Single Market and Economic and Monetary Union.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Eurozone crisis; Germany; European periphery; core-periphery; Greece; Ireland; Portugal; Italy; Spain; Comparative Political Economy
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Politics
Research Centres and Groups: Sussex European Institute
Depositing User: Neil Dooley
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2018 14:03
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2019 12:15
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/72824

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