Rome, 6th December 2018 – The “Roma Tre” University hosts the politician Nicola Zingaretti and Philosophy Professor Massimo Cacciari for a lecture and an intense debate about the need to build “a new EU – and Europe – closer to the people” (which also happened to be the official name of the event).
Nicola Zingaretti – After the introducing speech of the Rector Luca Pietromarchi, Zingaretti took the podium, describing his vision of a united Europe – what he believes to be the one and only possibility for European people and nations to withstand the spread of globalism and capitalism and the enormous gap between the individual European countries and the world’s superpowers. Therefore, the need to create a stronger EU, one that is closer to Europeans, that has a role in the international scene, and is again the cultural hub that it once was. Is this just a dream? No more a dream than was the creation of the EU itself back in the 50s, Zingaretti stated. Thus the new EU must be built with the effort of young people, intellectuals, and constructive, progressive politicians, unlike the sovereignist forces that are currently trying to dismantle the EU dream.
Nicola Zingaretti during his speech (Roma Tre Radio)
Lectio magistralis – Actually, the longest and most intense address was Massimo Cacciari’s lectio magistralis – a one hour long speech in which he focused on the very deepest philosophical reasons to think “European,” rather than “national.”
First of all, thinking in an European view means thinking of one’s own individuality not just relating to oneself, but to other individuals: Europeism refers to the absence of selfishness and the construction of an identity based on “we,” rather than “I”.
For this reason, we should look to build an integrated and democratic Europe, one based on solidarity, rights, democracy. This Europe necessitates a strong presence of intermediate structures serving as a link between the people and the institutions – without efficient intermediation, Cacciari said, “indirect democracy cannot work.” Cacciari and Zingaretti agree that, once these goals are achieved, Europe can once more become the cultural and ethical guide of the world.
Massimo Cacciari during his speech (Roma Tre Radio)
This is likely going to be the first of a cycle of debates concerning the EU, involving many of the main universities in Italy and with attendance of thousands of students, intellectuals, politicians – just as was the case on the December 6th.
We are sure that many ideas, projects, and proposals can arise from these meetings; and this could be the beginning of the change we all seek in Europe.