Divided We Stand, United We Fall? Partition, Democracy, and Nationalism in Ireland and Europe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Nationalism, untempered by limits, is a claim of right to power. By the end of the eighteenth century, the revolutionaries of America and France had replaced the sacred authority of the divine right of kings with that of"the people." Allying themselves to this new democratic authority, nineteenthcentury nationalists asserted the right to power over specified territories and districts. In many places, and especially in eastern and central Europe, imperial history left an irregular settlement pattern with communities of different languages and histories living in close proximity. As bureaucracy and literacy spread, the fight to control the language or religious content of public education and public service became the lightning conductors that galvanized whole populations into different political nations. The only possible outcome was a web of interconnected and competing claims to authority, each asserting a claim whose right was understood to be absolute and non-negotiable. Nationalism in these circumstances is not just like religion, it is religion
LanguageEnglish
Pages81-90
JournalBrown Journal of World Affairs
Volume7
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2000

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Democracy
Ireland
Religion
Authority
Nationalism
Language
Central Europe
History
Eastern Europe
Nationalists
World Wide Web
France
Living History
Revolution
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Divine Right
Public Services
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Public Education

Keywords

  • Partition
  • Northern Ireland
  • self-determination
  • peace.

Cite this

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Divided We Stand, United We Fall? Partition, Democracy, and Nationalism in Ireland and Europe. / Morrow, Duncan.

In: Brown Journal of World Affairs, Vol. 7, No. 1, 02.2000, p. 81-90.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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