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Examining the major, if controversial, role of the European Court of Justice in the development of the European Union, this text argues that the Court is a highly political body - contrary to the legal formalism which sees the Court's decisions as the unfolding of pure legal principles.;Kuper also argues that the Court has played and is still playing a significant part in the direction and very definition of the European Community. This then raises issues of democratic legitimacy, and the Court's work is evaluated with reference to issues concerning the distribution of powers and competences among the various bodies of the Community - the Court, Commission, Council, Parliament and Member States.