The making of national consciousness
- Issue date
Oficyna Wydawnicza AFM
Państwo i Społeczeństwo 2004, nr 1, s. 7-26.
"The ąuestion contained in the title of this paper, a question essentially referring to the scope of a person’s freedom within his own group relationships and his authentic opportunity to choose his own identity, is at least as old as the concept of national awareness itself. Both these matters - at least in Europę - date back to the first half of the 19lh century and are closely linked to one another. This is because national awareness - “selected history and the group of symbols connected with it” (Deutch 1953: 389) - is not borne of simple primary extrapolation of ethnic awareness, arising spontaneously, but - on the contrary - it is a thing which must be created by intellectuals and institutions. It is not enough, for this purpose - to bring about the emergence of a separate nation. The very naturę of this process was finely expressed by Massimo d ’Azeglio in his famous declaration in the mid-19th century: “Abbiamo fatto 1’Italia, adesso dobbiamo fare Italiani” (Latham 1970). Similar thoughts are expressed by phrases such as “transformation of the peasants into the French” or, in Polish, “nationalising the peasant”."(...)
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