New PDF release: A Contested Nation


ISBN-10: 0521819199

ISBN-13: 9780521819190

Oliver Zimmer examines the ways that the Swiss outlined their nationwide identification within the 19th century, within the face of a altering family and foreign heritage. Zimmer explores why the kingdom turned the point of interest of public problem at specific old 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 ebook leads to the Eighteen Nineties whilst Switzerland built right into a smooth state.

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The character o f a plea’. 55 The myth o f foundation found expression in the legend about the Oath o f the Riitli, w hile the myth o f liberation was per­ sonified in the figure o f W ilhelm Tell. A ccording to the myth o f foundation, the H absburg Yoke provided the im petus behind the conclusion o f a secret alliance betw een the leaders o f Uri, Schw yz and Unterw alden. The legend has it that this alliance was concluded secretly on the Riitli meadow above Lake Uri in A ugust o f 1307. The notion that the C onfederates had liberated them selves from an external enemy, already present in the foundation myth, was then personalised in the legend o f W ilhelm Tell.

74. 46 Sieber-Lehm ann and W ilhelm ini, In H e lve tio s, p. 4. , p. 80. 4K On the identity-forging role o f such m yth-sym bol com plexes, see John Armstrong, N a tio n s B e ­ fo r e N a tio n a lism (Chapel Hill/London: U niversity o f North Carolina Press, 1982), p. 8; A nthony D. Sm ith, E th n ic O rig in s o f N a tio n s (Oxford: B lackw ell, 1986), chs. 6 -7 . 49 Marchal, ‘B ellum ju stum ’, p. 124. 50 Cited in Guy P. Marchal, ‘D ie Antwort der Bauern. E lem ente und Schichtungen des eid­ g enössischen G eschichtsbew usstseins am A usgang des M ittelalters’, in H.

1 9 4 -6 . 57 A m em ber o f the ruling elite o f his native Glarus, Tschudi w orked in a m anner that was typical o f the chroniclers of his tim e. W hile m aking use o f legal docum ents in his work, he fell back on his im agination to fill in rem aining gaps and to add a poetic flavour to the overall narrative by personalising the historical reconstruction based upon the avail­ able records. A lthough the docum entary evidence available could substantiate neither the events nor all o f the protagonists that constitute the m yths, Tschudi did not hesitate to present them as factual evidence.

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A Contested Nation by OLIVER ZIMMER

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