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Nation, Patria And The Aesthetics Of Existence: Late Humanist National Discourse And Its Rewriting By The Modern Czech Nationalist Movement

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Chapter Summary

According to many scholars, research on early modern national discourses is constrained in the "iron cage" of modernism and it is rarely analyzed in adequate depth. This chapter analyzes the role played by the national discourse in the late humanist "ethics of the self" and examines how this particular discourse was re-written by the modern Czech national movement since the 1780s. The first part of the analysis refers to the concept of the "aesthetics of existence" elaborated by Michel Foucault in the last two volumes of his History of Sexuality. For the analysis of Veleslavin's national discourse the chapter describes the relationship of the concept of nation to the whole set of "imagined communities" discussed in texts of Veleslavín's circle. The last section of the analysis concentrates on the rewriting of Veleslavin's discourses by the modern Czech nationalist movement since the late eighteenth century.

Keywords: aesthetics of existence; History of Sexuality; late humanist national discourse; modern Czech nationalist movement; Veleslavín



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