Doing Nation in Empires: The Emergence of Turkey and Austria

Kevser Muratovic, Florian Gimpl


This article examines nation-building in relation to education and educational
institutions, taking two former big players in European politics in the wake of the
First World War as examples: the Ottoman Empire and the Habsburg Empire. The
Habsburg Empire is examined by focusing particularly on textbooks around and after
1918, comparing them with each other and understanding them as major tools for
spreading national ideas within state school. As will be shown, the idea of an Austrian
nation can hardly be found, neither before nor immediately after the break of 1918,
in the sense of the ideology of a nation-state. On the other hand, the Ottoman Empire
is being examined as an example for doing nation in a process of transformation of
social structures within non-western societies through western-style schools, thus
contributing to nationally substantiating the Republic of Turkey. This article examines
the imperial foundations of these two nation-states and how they and the preceding
empires dealt with the modern concept of nation and nationalism.
Key words: Austria; Habsburg Empire; nation-building; Ottoman Empire; Turkey

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