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Beyond the Nation: The Relational Basis of a Comparative History of Germany and Europe

Ther, Philipp

Central European History, 2003, Vol.36(1), pp.45-73 [Periódico revisado por pares]

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  • Título:
    Beyond the Nation: The Relational Basis of a Comparative History of Germany and Europe
  • Autor: Ther, Philipp
  • Assuntos: History & Archaeology
  • É parte de: Central European History, 2003, Vol.36(1), pp.45-73
  • Descrição: The process of European integration is posing a challenge to scholars in the humanities and the social sciences to rethink their frames of analysis. The once dominant nation-state has lost relevance while transnational processes and exchanges are receiving greater attention. This is not only true for the social sciences and economics, but also for history. The closer the European states are integrated, the more questions about Europe's past are asked. But what is European history, and upon which methods and units of analysis can it be built? Is it the sum of national histories, just as the EU is a union of nation-states, or is it something more? Since no one subject of European history can possibly encompass all countries on the continent, it is clear that independent of the general topic there needs to be a certain selection of studies about more than one local or national case. If those studies, no matter whether they cover political, social, or cultural history, are to be synthesized on a European level, comparisons need to be made at a certain stage of any given work. The same holds true for the history of Central Europe, an area with a particularly high degree of internal differentiation.

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