Nevertheless, Benedict Anderson, a British historian ND social researcher, effectively defines a nation as an “imagined political community’. Meaning that the people of a nation will share a mutual bond, a responsibility that will in result also difference them from others. Nationalism, in effect, can be described by the equation “people-nation-state” where the nation is held in the highest regard, and as the only possible form of state. Moreover, the state and its actions shall reflect the will of the people. In the period of 1848-1914, people had started to define themselves in terms of their own nationality.
Even though the evolutions of 1848 failed, politics now started to operate in the context of national aspirations. The people were loyal to their states; as a result, they differentiated themselves from the other nations, which made the birth of a right-wing nationalism possible. In Germany, the people were supposed to think that they were a chosen people, the ideal bearers of civilization and pureness of blood. Mass Nationalism Mass nationalism is the idea of spreading the spirit of nationalism of a particular country to the masses, in contrast to how it was in the past in some countries (e. . Germany), when nationalism was only popular in the circles of the elite, the literate. In many countries, the government understood the power nationalism had on the masses, and how this concept could be used to strengthen people’s loyalty to their country. Several strategies were used to create this sense of national identity and loyalty. In Germany, a General German School Union was formed in 1 881 to promote the German language and culture. In addition, by 1 901 Germany was spending 12 % of its national budget on education.
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The military, particularly the army conscription, was also used by the government to encourage loyalty to the state. And so did national symbols and festivals, national heroes and anthems. In Germany, the reoccurring eagle, laurel wreaths, oak leaves and winged Victory could be seen many places, from Government buildings to railway stations. Some other factors that made mass nationalism possible, and that may not have been done by the government, were the increasing demagnification, the popularity of the newspapers, industrialization and the development of railways and national roads.
Analysis Document 10: Bismarck and commercial reform, 1865 Purpose: The purpose is to explain the positive effect that the new mining law will have on the process of mining: “It completely removes everything antiquated and constraining, and instead gives mining the free movement which alone can make it great and beneficial. ” Origin: It was written by Bismarck in 1865 Value: It does have a certain value, as it is written by Bismarck, who was an important and famous figure in German history.
Limitations: The text is not an objective comment on the mining law. This piece of text is a great example f how the period of 1848-1914 was a period of demagnification and the State thinking about the “will of the people”: ‘The new mining law marks the conclusion of a long period of striving for reforms and of their partial introduction. It completely removes everything antiquated and constraining, and instead gives mining the free movement which alone can make it great and beneficial”.
This demagnification and promotion for the increase of social laws made it possible for more people to value its own country and nationality. Another quote showing the importance the leaders put on the specs of German unity: the new law on the other hand brings in clear and precise form a common standardization of the mining code, infirmly applicable to all mimes This document clearly shows the value of unification and demagnification that Bismarck displayed here, which in effect was one of the things that made the mass believe in the importance Of loyalty toward the nation.
Document 2: The economy and National unity Purpose: The purpose is to convince the readers that there is a need for a united Germany. Origin: The Bremen Handballs, a liberal newspaper, stressed on 11 July 1857. Value: It is an old, quite radical newspaper, that has a certain value, when it comes to understanding how and what the liberals were thinking at that time, just formulated in a grand way. Limitations: It is a bit biased, and its use of impose language make it so that it is neither objective in its thinking or writing.
By pointing out the fact that the other countries have already succeeded in making a united country, it only makes the necessity of a united Germany more obvious: “This need has been satisfied in all Other countries which we may mention, but not in Germany. The text then criticizes the nature of the country’s state, where the land is divided and so is the spirit: “There are others who judge the transit tolls solely by whether their preservation is more advantageous to Stetting or their abolition more favorable to Hamburg. This newspaper talks to the masses for a unified Germany. It is newspapers like these that help to strengthen the bond of nationalism, and help to make mass nationalism a realistic aspect of life at that time: “They demand one law, one legislation, one defense abroad. ” Conclusion To what extent was mass nationalism a creation of the (German) state government? Mass nationalism flourished in this period because of a lot of different reasons, and it seems that it was not only the work of the government that made it possible.
As we can see by examining the last document, the newspapers had a fair influence on the progress on acquiring a united Germany, even though it was indirect. However, how could the masses, especially the middle and the lower classes, have read this article, if not for the education that the government gave them? The government was he One to introduce the limited medical treatment in 1883, accident and sickness insurance in 1884, and pensions in 1 889, which again strengthen the bond between the state and the people.