George Steiner shows that the idea of Europe is too important to be left to politicians.
by Costica Bradatan
In November 2003, George Steiner, at the invitation of the Nexus Institute, delivered the 10th Nexus Lecture, an annual occurrence that brings extra glamour to the Netherlands’ already glamorous intellectual life. Over a decade later, Rob Riemen, the institute’s director, edited that lecture into a fine little book entitled The Idea of Europe. [...] Today, more than a decade after Steiner’s Nexus Lecture, his ideas sound even more urgent than when he delivered them. More important than Greece’s financial troubles, than the refugee crisis, and more important than the talk of exits, is the conversation about the meaning of Europe. Financial troubles come and go, as do the exits, and the crisis of refugees can be solved, but a crisis of meaning can be devastating.