In Search of Natural Identity: Alpine Landscape and the Reconstruction of the Swiss Nation

  title={In Search of Natural Identity: Alpine Landscape and the Reconstruction of the Swiss Nation},
  author={Oliver Zimmer},
  journal={Comparative Studies in Society and History},
  pages={637 - 665}
  • Oliver Zimmer
  • Published 1 October 1998
  • Sociology
  • Comparative Studies in Society and History
Elias Canetti, in a brief passage of his Crowds and Power (first published in German in 1960), argued that neither language, nor territory or history are at the heart of what today we would call national identity. What nations can not do without, however, and what has contributed most to turning different individuals into conscious members of a particular nation, is a national “crowd symbol.” Canetti then went on to show that most European nations possessed one such symbol around which a… 
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