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History DerailedCentral and Eastern Europe in the Long Nineteenth Century$
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Ivan Berend

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780520232990

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520232990.001.0001

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Romanticism and Nationalism in Central and Eastern Europe

Romanticism and Nationalism in Central and Eastern Europe

(p.41) Chapter 2 Romanticism and Nationalism in Central and Eastern Europe
History Derailed

Ivan T. Berend

University of California Press

This chapter describes romanticism, which came from Western Europe via Germany and brought the Western European zeitgeist of freedom and nationalism. Romanticism was primarily responsible for introducing the Western values of freedom, liberty, and nation. It became a paramount nation-building movement in the East: a newly created literary language fueled romantic arts, poetry, and drama, which joined forces with music, architecture, and history writing in the struggle for nationhood. The national movement of Central and Eastern Europe began with romantic folklorizing by a handful of intellectuals. Central and Eastern Europe gave birth to new national literatures, music, and art, whose cultural-political impact was almost independent of their international standing. Central and Eastern Europe became a hotbed of various kinds of extremism, wrong political decisions, and internal and international conflicts. Modern journals, coffeehouses, various urban clubs, and aristocratic and bourgeois private salons helped spread the national gospel.

Keywords:   romanticism, nationalism, freedom, Germany, Central Europe, Eastern Europe, liberty, national literatures, music, art

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