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The Hidden FrontierEcology and Ethnicity in an Alpine Valley$
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John Cole and Eric Wolf

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780520216815

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520216815.001.0001

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The Forging of Tyrolese Identity

The Forging of Tyrolese Identity

(p.25) Chapter II The Forging of Tyrolese Identity
The Hidden Frontier

John W. Cole

Eric R. Wolf

University of California Press

The ancient land of the Tyrol is poised upon both sides of the Brenner Pass, which now connects Austria and Italy across a narrow saddle at 1370 meters above sea level. This chapter examines the Alpine landscape, political consolidation, trade and mining, the peasant revolt, the Counter-Reformation, and economic and political decline. A unified political entity since the early thirteenth century, the Tyrol has been divided since the Treaty of St. Germain of 1919 into the transalpine Tyrol, which forms one of the provinces of the Federated Austrian Republic, and the cisalpine Tyrol. At the same time, its mountainous perimeter has enabled the Tyrol to cling to ecological adaptations already made, while allowing the gradual assimilation of new cultural patterns. Changing relations with the outside world, alongside steadfastness to its old ways, have characterized the Tyrol since ancient times.

Keywords:   Alpine landscape, Tyrol, political consolidation, St. Germain treaty, peasant revolt, Counter-Reformation

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