ERNiE website now adding postage stamps


Postage stamps are the ultimate form of “banal nationalism”. Spread in great variety and in huge numbers, they imprinted a national brand on all written communication throughout the 20th century. The European corpus of nationally-branded postage stamps is far too huge to admit full coverage within ERNiE, but a selection will be given under the rubric “CURRENCY”. That rubric used to contain only banknotes but now also accommodates postage stamps; the search bar allows users to choose between the two.
The metadata are hyperlinked and clickable, allowing users to explore the connections to different cultural media. As always, the “label” icon above the samples brings up a searchable/sortable checklist.

The interest of postage stamps for SPIN is threefold.

  • Intermediality. The imagery often remediates earlier cultural products (statues or paintings).
  • Historicism. Stamps frequently recall historical events and figures, and they are often issued to mark commemorative events.
  • “Banality”. Stamps represent the final 20th-century stage of a cultural diffusion process, spreading national icons from earlier (19th-century) cultural media with a more limited geographic or social outreach to a medium that is truly all-pervasive. As such they represent a powerful afterlife of 19th-century cultural nationalism in unobtrusive form.

In building up a repertory, SPIN will limit itself to state-issued stamps used in the national postal service, and will prioritize stamps with portraits of nationally iconic figures, excluding reigning monarchs. As always, suggestions and collaboration will be gratefully welcomed.

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Bibliography of Romantic Nationalism now online

A searchable Bibliography of Romantic Nationalism has come online on the ERNiE website (ernie.uva.nl). At present it contains 4700 titles; we shall be expanding it further in the months ahead. Like ERNiE itself, the bibliography is in the form of an online database. It is searchable by cultural community and/or by cultural current, or browsable by keyword, allowing users to filter for specific subsets that are useful for their research interests.
Clicking a title in the bibliographical list brings up a publication’s full data in formatted form, and allows you to identify (under the "references" tab) to which ERNiE article(s) this publication is linked.
The Bibliography also includes two newly added features:

  • a sorting button allows you to sort the search results list according to your preferences (using author, year, cultural current and/or cultural community as primary, secondary etc.sorting criteria)
  • a download button will export the search results in .ODT format - a formatted text file format which can be openend in all current word processing software on all operating systems.
  • Full instructions are in the ERNiE Users’ Manual on this site.

We have given the Bibliography its own URL, which we hope the research community will find useful: http://biblio.ernie.uva.nl
We are grateful for suggestions for completing the bibliography’s coverage. Please use the feedback form on this site.

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CfP conference "Religious Dimensions of Nationalism", Venice, November 2020

SPIN will co-organize a conference on “Religious Dimensions of Nationalism: Interdisciplinary Perspectives”, to be held 26-28 November 2020 in Venice at the Fondazione Giorgio Cini. Nationalism and religion are deeply entangled, not only in the crossover field of “political / secular religion” but by way of charismatic leadership, prophetism, messianism, millennialism, and more generally mysticism, esotericism and alternative spirituality. The concept of a divine covenant with a “chosen people” takes new shapes in nationalist, but also imperialist and colonialist, discourses. And the global spread of nationalism, and its role in the decolonization process, is often far from merely secular; indeed alliances with religious fundamentalism are now a prominent feature.
The conference aims at bringing together scholars coming from different disciplines who are interested in this entangled relationship. The full Call for Papers is online here.

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