Chapter

Nationalism in Transition: Nationalizing Impulses and International Counterweights in Latvia and Estonia

Julie Bernier

in Minority Nationalism and the Changing International Order

Published in print June 2001 | ISBN: 9780199242146
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599651 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199242143.003.0016
 Nationalism in Transition: Nationalizing Impulses and International Counterweights in Latvia and Estonia

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Nationalizing impulses in countries with substantial ethnic minorities often provoke counter‐mobilization by those minorities. This chapter looks at the effectiveness of international organizations in providing a counterweight to these impulses, with particular reference to the cases of Latvia and Estonia. It is divided into two main sections. The first shows that the adoption of nationalizing measures in Latvia and Estonia is rooted in concerns about the identity, demography, and social mobility of the core group, and outlines the types of nationalizing strategies that have been adopted to reallocate power, status, and resources in favour of this group. The second section examines interventions in Latvia and Estonia by the OSCE (Organization for Security and Co‐operation in Europe) High Commissioner on National Minorities, the Council of Europe, and the EU. Argues that the combination of these pressures has made an important contribution to the recent relaxation of the nationalizing policies that these two countries adopted in their first years of independence.

Keywords: Council of Europe; Estonia; European Community; Latvia; nationalism; OSCE

Chapter.  9453 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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