Who Are The Bulgarians? „Race,“ science and politics in fin-de-siècle Bulgaria Cover Image
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Who Are The Bulgarians? „Race,“ science and politics in fin-de-siècle Bulgaria
Who Are The Bulgarians? „Race,“ science and politics in fin-de-siècle Bulgaria

Author(s): Stefan Detchev
Subject(s): Historical Geography, Ethnohistory, Cultural Anthropology / Ethnology, Period(s) of Nation Building
Published by: Centre for Advanced Study Sofia (CAS)
Keywords: nationalism; national ideologies and definition of the nations;
Summary/Abstract: In national ideologies and definition of the nations, the issues of „race“ and ethnicity were in many cases central ones. In the 19th century the emerging national consciousness in many cases received rational shape through a scientific revolution. At that time nationalism was, in fact, the driving force behind „racial“ differentiation. In the scientific investigations one obvious area was that of „race,“ which often had political objectives as an attempt to assert the existence of a national identity based on innate „racial“ characteristics. As Barkan emphasizes, the intensification of national rivalry in Europe in the latter part of the 19th century stimulated pursuit of still greater „racial“ differentiation as a mode of justifying nationalism that was sanctioned by the growing repute of biology and evolutionary theory. Part of this process of constructing national ideologies in the 19th century was the search for racial antiquity, „ancestors“ and common descent. Special importance had been assigned to different branches of modern science where the idea of inherent difference found legitimacy, and „race“ was perceived primarily as a scientific concept.2 Inasmuch as national ideologies played a crucial role in the public political domain, the intersection between „race,“ „ancestors,“ ethnogenesis, science and politics was quite obvious.

  • Page Count: 29
  • Publication Year: 2011
  • Language: English