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Reconfiguring Nationalism: The Roll Call of the Fallen Soldiers (1800–2001)

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Devastating tragedies, such as the 9/11 terrorist attacks or the massacre during the Polish protests of 1970, are still commemorated with a roll call of the victims’ names, which is publicly pronounced. As a matter of civil or political religion, this ritual is studied by political scientists and sociologists and restricted to a specific national context. For the first time, a comparative method of history of religions is applied in order to retrace the transnational diffusion of this nationalist ritual from the Napoleonic era, passing through the fascist European experience, to the present day. The changing of the aesthetic forms in which the ritual took and takes shape, by producing images of the community gathered, outlines an aesthetic realization of ‘imagined communities.’ This outline will be examined with reference to Benedict Anderson’s theory on the origin and spread of nationalism.

Affiliations: 1: University of Rome La Sapienza, valerio.severino@uniroma1.it

10.1163/18748929-01002002
/content/journals/10.1163/18748929-01002002
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2017-05-12
2017-11-24

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