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Disentangling Chilean Exceptionalism: The interplay of civic and ethnic elements in nationalist discourse, 1842-1931

Hinrichsen Herrera, Alfred Thomas; (2021) Disentangling Chilean Exceptionalism: The interplay of civic and ethnic elements in nationalist discourse, 1842-1931. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London).

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Abstract

The thesis examines the civic and ethnocultural elements embedded in Chilean nationalist discourse over the period 1842-1931. It explains how intellectuals articulated a nationalist discourse flexible enough to adapt to the challenges arising from the arrival of European immigrants, the integration of indigenous peoples, as well as their projects for a continental union. It also explores how this nationalist discourse was advocated by a greater range of thinkers - of different national origins, political sympathies and social backgrounds - than has been previously recognised. Chilean nationalism is usually interpreted based on a great divide between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The former as an exclusive form of State-based patriotism while the latter as a racialised and illiberal phenomenon. I question both interpretations by arguing that there are significant commonalities between the nationalist discourses of both centuries, particularly when focussing on the underlying reasonings used to buttress the notion of Chilean exceptionalism. Landscape, climate, race and culture, as well as political process and institutional stability, were all used by statesmen, intellectuals and the learned public throughout the period to foster an idea of Chilean nationhood as distinctive from other Spanish American republics. To avoid an artificial divide between both centuries, the dissertation's scope spans almost one hundred years, emphasising two crucial groups: the Generation of 1842 and the Centenary Generation of 1910. Adopting a transnational approach, this dissertation unveils the main civic and ethnocultural tenets of Chilean nationalist discourse during this crucial period of state-formation and nation-building. It sheds light on the malleability of nationalism, as well as discussing its influence in shaping various state policies, such as educational reform, colonisation, immigration, indigenous legislation and projects of regional integration. It contributes both to a rethinking of Chilean history and to debates in the comparative history of nationalism.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Disentangling Chilean Exceptionalism: The interplay of civic and ethnic elements in nationalist discourse, 1842-1931
Event: UCL
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2021. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of History
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10137373
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