Δίκαιο -- Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση, Χώρες της -- Γλώσσα Law -- European Union countries -- Language
Πάντειο Πανεπιστήμιο Κοινωνικών και Πολιτικών Επιστημών
The European Union, as an international organization aiming at the establishment and functioning of a common market and an economic union through the enactment of common rules, addresses language issues in two main ways : European law needs a “european language”. Since there is no such thing as a european esperando, European Community law has always been a multilingual law. At the same time, the European Community has to legislate in a multilingual reality. Both these aspects are part of a european law and language perspective; the language of EC rules and EC rules on language. The first part of this paper deals with the language of European Communities, i.e. the linguistic regime of EC institutions and EC legislation. Being initially a matter of political balance and symbolic value, linguistic equality seemed to also respond to the need for transparency and prevent an extra burden on the democratic deficit of the European Union. However, the ever expanding E.C. law, rationae materiae and rationae personae has made it practically impossible to opt for a constitutional status to linguistic equality. Rather than accepting it as a principle of ec law, the ECJ has considered it a choice of secondary legislation, subject to restrictions and variations imposed by the needs of european institutions and organisms. However, as long as the EC legislation is drafted in all 23 official languages and all texts are considered equally binding, interpreting community norms entails particular challenges. As there is no single authentic version, a “translingual” approach to controversial terms and expressions has to take place. Rules on treaty interpretation are of only little use. The demand for better regulation has led to the adoption of rules on legal drafting that take into account the multilingual character of e.c. law and might contribute to preemptively address such interpretation problems. The second part of the paper deals with multilingualism as a threat to the common market. Free movement of goods, people and services often encounters linguistic barriers. Language requirements imposed by member states under various excuses, such as consumer protection and national language policy are scrutinized by the European Court of Justice. Such measures are found to be incompatible with EC rules whenever they are discriminatory and fail the proportionality test. On the other hand, although EC law does not protect minority linguistic rights as such, whenever such rights exist under national law, other member states' nationals can also benefit from them. The multilingual element of European integration seems at the same time a blessing and a curse. Altough one is tempted to use the Babel tower analogy, the role of multilingualism has so far been constructive. European legal language is a multilingual language regulating a multilingual community. Integration through law but not through a single language is a unique and challenging trait of the European Union edifice that adds to its complexity but also to its coherence and originality.
Διπλωματική εργασία - Πάντειο Πανεπιστήμιο. Γενικό Τμήμα Δικαίου, ΠΜΣ "Δίκαιο και Ευρωπαϊκή Ενοποίηση", κατεύθυνση Δημόσιο Δίκαιο, 2009