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Amotz Giladi

The trajectory of the writer and critic Camille Mauclair (1872–1945) was marked by two ruptures: having begun his career within the internationalized avant-gardes, oriented toward Symbolism and Anarchism, he moved away from these circles at the turn of the century. Indeed, the crisis that Symbolism and Anarchism underwent during these years led Mauclair toward Neo-Classicism. To his new esthetic vision was added, during the Great War, a nationalist positioning that led him to virulent xenophobia in the interwar period. Foreign artists were henceforth denounced by Mauclair as being the cause of France's so-called cultural decadence. The turnaround in Mauclair's esthetic and political vision reflects the “return to order” tendencies that grew stronger in French culture from the end of the nineteenth century, attaining their summit during World War II. The propagation of these tendencies was largely due to the influence that the esthetic and ideological reflections of Charles Maurras exerted in intellectual circles.

French La trajectoire de l'écrivain et critique Camille Mauclair (1872–1945) fut marquée par deux ruptures: ayant commencé sa carrière au sein des avant-gardes internationalisées, orientées vers le symbolisme et l'anarchis me, il s'éloigna de ces milieux au tournant du siècle. En eff et, la crise subie par le symbolisme et l'anarchisme durant ces années amena Mauclair vers le néo-classicisme. À cette nouvelle vision esthétique s'ajouta, durant la Grande Guerre, un positionnement nationaliste qui déboucha, dans l'entre-deux-guerres, sur une xénophobie virulente. Dès lors, les artistes étrangers furent étiquetés par Mauclair comme les responsables d'une prétendue décadence culturelle de la France. Le revirement esthétique et politique de Mauclair reflète les tendances de “retour à l'ordre,” qui se renforçaient dans la culture française depuis la fin du dix-neuvième siècle et atteignirent leur sommet durant la Seconde Guerre mondiale. La propagation de ces tendances était due, en grande partie, à l'influence que la réflexion esthétique et idéologique de Charles Maurras exerçait dans les milieux intellectuels.

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Robert W. Montgomery

This article investigates the upsurge in political and social activism among the Buriats of Siberia's Lake Baikal region during Russia's 1905 Revolution (broadly defined as 1905 to 1907). Specific topics include the Buriats' struggles for their ancestral lands and traditional political structures, and against Russification and discrimination; the activities of the Buriat intelligentsia; the holding of Buriat national congresses; participation in radical and liberal movements; the use of Buddhism as a national symbol; attempts to nativize education; and participation in the early Duma system.

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Polycarp Ikuenobe

This article examines Nnamdi Azikiwe’s idea of mental emancipation as the intellectual foundation for his political philosophy. Mental emancipation involves re-educating Africans to adopt scientific, critical, analytic, and logical modes of thinking. Azikiwe argues that development must involve changing Africans’ intellectual attitudes and educational system. He argues that Western education, through perpetuating negative stereotypes and engendering ‘colonial mentality’, has neither fostered critical and scientific thinking, nor enabled Africans to apply their knowledge for development. Mental emancipation would enable Africans to develop self-confidence, and the critical examination of superstitious beliefs that have hindered Africa’s development. I show that Azikiwe’s ideas have been recaptured by African philosophers like Bodunrin and Wiredu, regarding their critique of aspects of African tradition and prescription for how African philosophy can contribute to development.

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The Poetics of Anti-Americanism in Greece

Rhetoric, Agency, and Local Meaning

Elisabeth Kirtsoglou and Dimitrios Theodossopoulos

In this article we examine the content and rationale of anti-Americanism in Greece, drawing ethnographic information from two urban centers, Patras and Volos. We pay special attention to the conspiracy theory attributes of this rhetoric, and, instead of dismissing it or seeing it primarily as a manifestation of nationalist thinking, we attempt to unpack the threads of meaning that make it so appealing in local contexts. We look in particular at the etiology of blame within this particular discourse and try to explain the specific readings of history and politics that make it significant in local contexts. We argue that Greek anti-Americanism has an empowering potential for local actors, as it provides them with a certain degree of discursive agency over wider political processes that are beyond their immediate control.

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Nicholas Robinette

The comics anthologies Ally Sloper and Escape magazine began publication in the 1970s and 1980s. They inherited a complex national situation, one in which locally produced comics always had to compete with foreign imports, primarily superhero comics from the United States. Each of these pioneering anthologies sought to create a space for small press and independent English comics and a wider sense of the history and potential of the medium, but in doing so, they had to negotiate a history and market shaped by the consumption of comics from the United States. Placing the anthologies within this larger situation, this article interprets the work of these various editors in terms of the national and cosmopolitan strategies they deployed as they sought to further develop English comics.

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Not Soft Power, but Speaking Softly

‘Everyday Diplomacy’ in Field Relations during the Russia-Ukraine Conflict

Jeremy Morris

Based on long-term fieldwork in Russia, but focusing mainly on the aftermath of the 2014 Malaysian airliner downing in Ukraine, this article examines the individual ethnographer and informants alike as unwilling ‘diplomatic’ representatives in the field. Firstly, I discuss the authoritarian political context in Russia and how it affects the notion of ‘soft power’ and ‘public’ discourse. Then I relate the familiar ‘political testing’ experience of researchers by informants, and ‘neutrality’ in field relations (Ergun and Erdemir 2010). Next, I draw on the anthropology of indirect communication to characterize ‘everyday diplomacy’ after the event as a particular kind of civility. I go on to examine attendant affective states of ‘tension, disturbance, or jarring’ (Navaro-Yashin 2012) that both threaten civility and enable it. Finally, I argue that classic ethnographic rapport-building deserves further examination in the light of the porosity of politics, the social environment and the field.

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Wearing Hijab in Sarajevo

Dress Practices and the Islamic Revival in Post-war Bosnia-Herzegovina

Andreja Mesarič

This essay observes contemporary Islamic dress practices in Bosnia-Herzegovina as a catalyst throwing into relief various tensions within Bosnian society – not only between Bosniaks, Serbs and Croats, but among Bosniaks themselves. Based on fieldwork carried out in Sarajevo, it looks at how people employ notions of culture and tradition when justifying what types of Islamic dress, if any, are compatible with Bosnian modernity. The essay analyses how people selectively draw on fragments from the historical and ethnographic record when they argue for or against veiling, and shows how, even though many denounce veiling and particularly face veiling as foreign to Bosnia, women who veil themselves equally draw on notions of culture and tradition when justifying their dress choices to others. The essay highlights how competing visions of Islam play a role in the transformation of religious, ethnic and gender identities in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and argues that dress as a gendered bodily practice does not merely mark assumed essential differences between an imagined Bosnian and foreign Islam but serves as a crucial means of their construction.

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Yoshiko Nozaki and Mark Selden

Japan's right-wing nationalists have launched three major attacks on school textbooks over the second half of the twentieth century. Centered on the treatment of colonialism and war, the attacks surfaced in 1955, the late 1970s, and the mid-1990s. This article examines three moments in light of Japanese domestic as well as regional and global political contexts to gain insight into the persistent problem of the Pacific War in historical memory and its refraction in textbook treatments. There are striking similarities as well as critical di erences in the ways the attacks on textbooks recurred and in the conditions of political instability.

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Scandinavianism

Mapping the Rise of a New Concept

Ruth Hemstad

In the historiography describing the pan-Scandinavian movement that started gaining ground in the late 1830s, Scandinavianism has been widely employed as a historical category, usually without any discussion regarding the actual emergence of the concept itself. This article discusses when and why Scandinavianism entered into political language as a powerful new concept capable of setting a future-oriented agenda. After analyzing digitized newspaper material and other relevant publications in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark and after using a combination of distant and close reading, it concludes that Scandinavianism as a neologism only appeared as late as 1843. This article aims to contribute to a conceptual transnational history of Scandinavianism by examining its emergence, reception, and discursive context in the early 1840s.

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David Leishman

Barr’s Irn-Bru (previously Iron Brew), Scotland’s best-known soft drink, was promoted by recurrent comic strip advertisements in Scottish newspapers from 1939 to 1970. ‘The Adventures of Ba-Bru’ featured an eponymous Indian character who was joined by a kilt-wearing companion known as Sandy. This article explores how what the firm presents as the longest-running promotional comic strip in history has helped shape the construction of Scottishness in the drink’s advertising. The exotic nature of the central Ba-Bru figure provides a counterpoint to manifestations of local particularism but also grounds the drink’s discourse on Scottishness in a wider imperial and unionist context. The comic strips also generate examples of intermedial transfer that underline the impact of quotidian consumption habits in a national identity shaped by popular culture.