Ethnic Hierarchies and the Shifting EU Schengen Border in the Post-Cold War Era

Lynn Tesser


Borders in Central and Eastern Europe witnessed stark changes in recent decades.  Frontiers went from high security zones during the Cold War to far more open borders as socialism retreated.  Yet, the subsequent eastward shift of the European Union's Schengen border control system returned some borders to high security status, with only a few later shedding such status as the system moved further eastwards.  Beyond discerning how the Schengen border undercuts the EU's effort to promote non-discrimination and other liberal values, this article also shows how Schengen holds the power to further entrench perceptions of ethnic hierarchy.    


Central Europe; Eastern Europe; Borders; Schengen; EU Enlargement; Nationalism; National Identity; Liberalism

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