The Politics of Cultural Retreat: Imperial Bureaucracy in by Iryna Vushko

By Iryna Vushko

An illuminating background of state-building, nationalism, and paperwork, this ebook tells the tale of the way a world cohort of Austrian officers from Bohemia, Hungary, the Hapsburg Netherlands, Italy, and a number of other German states administered Galicia from its annexation from Poland-Lithuania in 1772 till the start of Polish autonomy in 1867. Historian Iryna Vushko examines the interactions among those German-speaking bureaucrats and the neighborhood Galician inhabitants of Poles, Ukrainians, and Jews. She finds how Enlightenment-inspired theories of modernity and supranational uniformity primarily backfired, eventually bringing approximately effects that starkly contradicted the unique intentions and beliefs of the imperial governors.

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By Iryna Vushko

An illuminating background of state-building, nationalism, and paperwork, this ebook tells the tale of the way a world cohort of Austrian officers from Bohemia, Hungary, the Hapsburg Netherlands, Italy, and a number of other German states administered Galicia from its annexation from Poland-Lithuania in 1772 till the start of Polish autonomy in 1867. Historian Iryna Vushko examines the interactions among those German-speaking bureaucrats and the neighborhood Galician inhabitants of Poles, Ukrainians, and Jews. She finds how Enlightenment-inspired theories of modernity and supranational uniformity primarily backfired, eventually bringing approximately effects that starkly contradicted the unique intentions and beliefs of the imperial governors.

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Additional resources for The Politics of Cultural Retreat: Imperial Bureaucracy in Austrian Galicia, 1772-1867

Sample text

Their different tactics notwithstanding, both Maria Theresa and Joseph II shared a commitment to the creation of a uniform state out of a conglomerate of heterogeneous provinces. 22 bu r e au c r at i c e n l i g h t e n m e n t and galicia In the spirit of the Enlightenment, Maria Theresa transformed relations between ruler and subjects, as well as between elites and the lower classes. The Catholic Church lost its dominant status, and in 1781–82, Eastern Catholicism, Protestantism, Orthodoxy, and Judaism were officially recognized as legal.

To him, the sine qua non of administrative routine was hierarchical compliance, ideally voluntary rather than enforced; in any case, those who did not fulfill their designated task did not deserve the status of new bureaucrat. But Joseph II enjoyed no actual monopoly on political critique, and in the 1770s and 1780s, satirical descriptions of imperial bureaucrats constituted a literary genre of seemingly broad appeal. “How can one become a court councillor? ” asked “Sangilla von Freundsperg” at the opening of Court Councillors in ****, another political pamphlet of the 1780s.

Joseph II, willing to negotiate certain aspects of it, never altered his commitment to a new form of administration. This innovation, and the new bureaucracy it engendered, remained the basis, however imperfect, of state organization till 1918. Annexing Galicia These administrative forms were put to the test numerous times in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. One of the first trials came as early as the 1770s, with the monarchy’s eastward expansion proving a major challenge and turning point in the history of the imperial bureaucracy.

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