O politično-teritorialnem razvoju nedržavnih narodov v Evropi


  • Jernej Zupančič Univerza v Ljubljani, Filozofska fakulteta



Ključne besede:

narod, nacionalna država, nacionalizem, manjšine, geopolitika


This paper analyzes the issue of nations without states in contemporary Europe between the Atlantic and the Urals. The political map of the continent comprises forty-seven countries, most of which are nation-states. However, the cultural mosaic of Europe is far more complex; there are around fifty ethnic groups (in addition to historical, territorial, or indigenous ethnic minorities and an enormous number of immigrant ethnic communities) lacking a state-based organization. Together, these people add up to 78 million, or almost 15% of the European population. Twenty-seven groups can be considered nations without states; they are culturally and ethnically based and have various forms of territorial integrity and political organization. However, they did not create a state organization, despite many attempts by some through history. Without a state organization, those communities have poorer opportunities to protect their folk culture and to reproduce various elements of ethnic identity. This is why they seek territorial autonomy or independent statehood through nationalist movements. In many cases, these ambitions are encompassed in regional movements. These movements have been popular in Europe, particularly because the idea of a “Europe of regions” as part of the European Union has had broad political support and acceptance. However, it has not actually succeeded. The EU and Europe as a whole are still a Europe of (nation)-states. In general, regional movements have been successful and through this some nations without states have attained part of their political ambitions in the form of territorial autonomy. The regionalization of former centralist states (e.g., Spain and the United Kingdom) increased the chances of ethnic survival for the Catalans, Basques, Scots, and Welsh. On the other hand, the regionalization of nations without states represented territorial division, a kind of “divide and rule” strategy serving to reduce their ambitions towards national independence. The territorial and political reconstruction of nation-states has been successful, but it did not solve all ethnic problems. The European political map reveals another interesting phenomenon: a double state for some nations. These are particularly typical for the Balkans. Because of political and territorial development after the Second World War and during the transition period in the 1990s and beyond, the principle of immutable political borders (logically encompassing the creation of new nation-states as well) led to further political and territorial divisions and (in fact, paradoxically) fragmentation. Some of these “inner” autonomous territories are functioning as de facto states. The cases of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus or Republika Srpska in Bosnia-Herzegovina are good examples of these processes. This development has not garnered much political support in most European countries or at the EU level. However, it is an undesirable reality and is certainly one of changes among the political and territorial (or even greater) challenges for the Europe of tomorrow. It forces a reexamination of the phenomenon and value of nations. The existence of nations without states represents a potential for the creation of new (nation) states.


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Biografija avtorja

Jernej Zupančič, Univerza v Ljubljani, Filozofska fakulteta

Predava socialno geografijo, politično geografijo in geografijo Jugovzhodne Evrope na Filozofski fakulteti Univerze v Ljubljani. Težišče njegovega raziskovalnega dela je poleg politične geografije zlasti narodno in manjšinsko vprašanje.




Kako citirati

Zupančič, J. . (2010). O politično-teritorialnem razvoju nedržavnih narodov v Evropi. Ars & Humanitas, 4(1-2), 230–245. https://doi.org/10.4312/ars.4.1-2.230-245