Thursday, November 26, 2009

In defense of Empire

From an interview with Jan Urban,
What is your take on the Czech Republic today?

I have mixed feelings. On the one hand, I am enjoying every day. On the other hand, I was born Czechoslovak and educated Czechoslovak. To people like myself, the Czech Republic was an entirely different concept. I did not like being defined by my language. I think that I am much more complicated. I want to be much more complicated. I believe that if you are looking for the most tragic mistake in European history it is acceptance of the concept of language-based nationalism.

Just yesterday I was giving a lecture in Vienna and said a hundred years ago Vienna was my capital. We only had one political system, one parliament, one currency, one transportation system. After two world wars and the expulsion of millions, are we any wiser?
As we get closer to 2014 and the centennial of the start of WW1 expect more on what was lost with multicultural i.e. multilignual Empires.

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