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Alcide De Gasperi is universally recognized as a Founding Father of Europe, but his enlightened action in favour of European unification is little known outside of Italy.
At the beginning of the 1950s, he became one of the most steadfast advocates of a European federation as a response to the problems of peace in Europe and Franco-German reconciliation. Foreseeing the limits of functional integration, he strongly supported the creation of a European political community as a framework in which to insert the nascent communities. After retracing the fundamental stages in the Europeanist education of the political leader from Trentino, the book focuses on his determination in fighting to give constituent power to the European Defense Community (EDC) Assembly, to convene the ad hoc Assembly, charged with studying and drawing up a treaty for the European Political Community, and to gain approval for the treaty.
In a Europe that today is questioning its future, reflecting on De Gasperi’s thoughts and Europeanist actions means rediscovering the founding values of the process of European unification, its accompanying ideals, and the historical reasons that have given expression to it.