In This Review

Arguing About Asylum: The Complexity of Refugee Debates in Europe
Arguing About Asylum: The Complexity of Refugee Debates in Europe
By Niklaus Steiner
St. Martin's Press, 2000, 192 pp
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Migrants and Citizens: Demographic Change in the European State System
Migrants and Citizens: Demographic Change in the European State System
By Rey Koslowski
Cornell University Press, 2000, 232 pp
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Immigration and European Integration: Toward Fortress Europe?
Immigration and European Integration: Toward Fortress Europe?
By Andrew P. Geddes
St. Martin's Press, 2000, 208 pp
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Few issues are more controversial in the EU than immigration and asylum. The first of these books carefully examines these debates in Switzerland, Germany, and Britain, with a special focus on issues of national interest and morality raised in the arguments concerning asylum. In Switzerland, Steiner writes, these arguments have changed significantly since the Cold War as policy has become more restrictive. Supporters of tighter laws in Switzerland and Germany now make a "moral" case that "tighter laws [are] needed to maintain the humanitarian tradition of granting asylum to refugees"-while both sides claim their position best serves the national interest. And once-tolerant Britain has become increasingly critical of refugees. Nevertheless, Steiner optimistically concludes that asylum is still widely recognized as a central tenet of liberal democracy.

Koslowski looks at the migrations' importance in undermining traditional international-relations analysis. His focus on European integration's effects on immigrants also touches on the development of a European citizenship and an intra-EU migration regime. For example, EU citizenship is now granted only to nationals of EU member states, but EU citizens living in a member state other than their own can acquire limited political rights. Koslowski also discusses the rise of dual citizenship, an issue closely linked with immigrant participation in home country politics. His examination of these trends covers too many empirical and theoretical issues to satisfy completely. He is provocative nonetheless, underscoring how the context of low fertility rates and increasing migration polarizes European domestic politics and challenges the stability of democracies.

In a more focused volume, Geddes also discusses immigration in the EU context but emphasizes the dramatic difference in status between "inner" migrants who move freely from one EU member state to another and migrants coming from outside the EU. The latter face a strict intergovernmental migration policy that has served as a brake, in part because such migrations are seen as adding to the burdens of the welfare state. The author acknowledges the potential specter of a "fortress Europe" but deems it unlikely because no state is capable of controlling its borders. To date, his is the most comprehensive analysis of the EU's legal treatment of migration.