“The divine fire … burns within them.” National Davids and Goliaths in Swiss, Danish, and Scottish school lessons
04A - Beitrag Sammelband
Heroic figures and their exploits are at the heart of national histories. This chapter analyzes the use of the biblical trope of David and Goliath in the depiction of three such heroes—namely William Tell, Niels Ebbesen, and William Wallace—and their respective foes in Swiss, Danish, and Scottish schoolbooks and other school materials. We use these Swiss, Danish, and Scottish cases to argue that the translation of this well-known biblical trope into nationalist discourse was used to create national imaginaries of who “we” are and how “we” differ from “others.” Thus, the case studies are telling examples of how schools help to create and promote national consciousness and national literacies. Moreover, they demonstrate the importance of exploring the role of schools and educational historiography as tools in the nation-building process in order to understand the development and perseverance of national imaginaries.
Education, curriculum and nation-building
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