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The 'Centripetal' Discursive Strategy: Nationalising The Territory

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Chapter Summary

The 'centripetal' strategy is made up of two further strands, seeking to link physical space and its inhabitants: the 'reification' and the 'territorialisation' of space. The third strand examined in this chapter 'reifies' the notion of 'homeland', rendering it static in time and space. 'Reifi-cation' has its hey-day in the inter-war period, when 'homeland' was constructed as a time-honoured connection of ancestry/blood and soil. The Luxembourgish term Heemecht denotes both the 'homeland' and the 'fatherland'. There is no equivalent of the German Vaterland, and no distinction between petite patrie and grande patrie, as in the Roman and later French tradition. The final strand, 'territorialisation', emerges much later and links space to statehood, citizenship and political borders. This strand is particularly tricky to analyse, since it represents a highly potent interdiscourse, that is a popular appropriation of a specific discourse.

Keywords: centripetal strategy; french tradition; German Vaterland; Heemecht; Homeland; Luxembourgish



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