By OLIVER ZIMMER
Oliver Zimmer examines the ways that the Swiss outlined their nationwide identification within the 19th century, within the face of a altering household and overseas heritage. Zimmer explores why the state turned the point of interest of public drawback at specific historic junctures, how various social actors created and re-created Swiss nationhood, and why the Swiss embraced a few definitions instead of others. starting within the 1760s, which witnessed the genesis of an early nationwide circulation, the publication leads to the Eighteen Nineties while Switzerland built right into a smooth kingdom.
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Extra info for A Contested Nation
C O N T I N U I T I E S OR C O N N E C T I O N S ? T he view that historians o f modern nationalism should consider the pre-m odern period is by no means new. 4 H obsbaw m uses the term to refer to ‘certain variants of feelings o f collective belonging w hich already existed and w hich could operate, as it were, potentially on the m acro-political scale which could fit in with modern states and nations’. 6 W here such bonds existed, he asserts in a key passage, ‘they m ade the task o f nationalism e a s ie r.
I. See also M aissen, 'W eshalb die E idgenossen H elvetier w urden’. 58 Tschudi, C hro n ico n H e lve tic u m , vol. II, p. 48; lm H of, M ytlio s S ch w eiz, ch. 1. 59 Bernhard Stettler in his introduction to Tschudi, C hronicon H e lve tic u m , vol. II, p. 20. , vol. I, p. 37, Peter Stadler writes that Tschudi tried to ‘show that the em ergence o f the S w iss C on federation [was] the product neither o f rebellion nor o f an endeavour to destroy the given status order, but merely an attempt by an old, status-conscious com m unity to secure its independence’.
72 Yet, essentially, the myth o f ethnic origin and independence that found expression in the D eclaration o f Arbroath reflects the sense o f solidarity o f a regnal com m unity dom inated by kings and nobles. This tiny elite provided the driving force behind the creation o f the com m unal m yths that the D eclaration o f A rbroath contains. 73 This seem s to have been different under conditions o f C onfederate comm unalism . Given that the C onfederate m ythical narrative could be interpreted in ways that potentially challenged existing authority, political elites had to dem onstrate that their actions did not violate the exam ple set by the supposedly 70 T his seem s to call into doubt Sablonier’s argument that, before the liberal revolutions o f the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, there w as no need for political elites to use historical argu ments to legitim ate them selves before a public.
A Contested Nation by OLIVER ZIMMER