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Ryszard Radzik. From ethnic association to national community.

This text is dedicated to constructing of concept for the analysis of the process of transition from ethnic association to national communities in Central and Eastern Europe in the 19th and in early 20th century. Such concepts as national consciousness, identity and relations are characterized. Distinction is made between the concepts of ethnic unity and ethnic group. Pre-industrial (sometimes multimillion) ethnic unity is not entirely a group when its members are not conscious about their territorial borders, have no a developed feeling of social relations with people out of their native place, and often are not aware of those people’s existence. Such kind of community can be treated as a «chain» of associated ethnic groups which appear to be societies a good deal reserved culturally and spatially, united by traditional relations, feeling of relationship which connects their cultures, extremely responsive to tradition, and aimed to existence in an unchangeable form, ethnically not organized, relatively homogeneous in culture (language) and social stratification. Category of «we» is used there only in terms of direct personal experience in scale of a village, parish, outskirts.
At the same time nation is a community strongly connected by relations which influence by rooted through its members collective vision of themselves as a cultural and historical unity; is a culturally centric community connected by mediate and impersonal relations, culturally independent, aimed to development, and existing through institutionalizing of its social and cultural life. Its members rather think in terms of Ossowski’s «ideological Motherland» (and feeling of ethnicity appears to be in the boundaries of «native place»).