Home News The South Tyrol Mannequin: Ethnic Pacification in a Nutshell

The South Tyrol Mannequin: Ethnic Pacification in a Nutshell


Avoiding the return of tribal politics – and political tribes – by institutionalizing group variety has change into one precedence within the age of re-globalization and populism. The distinctive variety association of the small autonomous space of South Tyrol, within the midst of the European Alps, supplies a a lot sought-after counter-model to the return of political tribalism within the garments of ethnonationalism. This mannequin of ethnicity-inclusive territorial autonomy just isn’t depending on the day by day goodwill of politicians and residents as many others are however is institutionalized by way of the anchorage within the nationwide Italian structure and thus has the power to impose “tolerance by regulation”.

The worldwide framework couldn’t be extra well timed to make this mannequin an instance. The present development of re-nationalization favors the return of mono-narratives of identification and ethnic belonging not solely in Europe however on a world scale. But Europe, because the continent which over the previous half-century has discovered a few of the most profitable fashions of politically and juridically arranging ethnic variety and cultural distinction, is especially challenged by such a development. Mixed with populism and “state capturing” by teams and events, re-nationalization favors a transnational resurgence of “tribal politics” mixed with the rhetoric of “political tribalism” that threatens ethnic coexistence, particularly in European border areas between completely different nation-states the place pluricultural settings are the norm and never the exception.

Political tribalism in Europe is more and more spurred by and enacted by way of – generally synthetic – the renaissance of ethnic-nationalisms of various scales, ranges, and high quality. It may be noticed in border areas comparable to, for instance, the area between Flanders and Wallonia (Belgium), the realm between Spain and France (the Basque area), the Catalan area (Spain), the jap areas of Ukraine (Ukraine-Russia), the Chechnya area, the Nagorno-Karabakh space or the areas of the Hungarian minorities in adjoining nations (Hungary-Romania, Hungary-Serbia, Hungary-Slovakia). The embodiment of tribal politics within the garments of ethnonationalism nevertheless typically happens for tactical causes that serve particular pursuits relatively than the well-being of the ethnic teams concerned. It tends to scale back peaceable coexistence, not least by harming narratives of integration that took a long time to be applied.

Seen total, students comparable to Jerry Z. Muller (Muller 2008) and Amy Chua (Chua 2018a, Chua 2018b) have rightly identified that the present interweaving between the return of political tribalism and regressive ethnonationalism might be a defining second within the present historic passage of European (and Western) open societies, with broad long-term socio-political ramifications. Political tribalism as ethnonationalism could be exercised on all ranges of governance, together with the native, regional and nationwide ranges; and when it reaches the dimension of transnational relations it will possibly result in phenomena of spiral regression the place regressive social and political patterns mutually have an effect on one another past borders, reaching even to threaten the Western liberal order, as practiced for the reason that finish of the second world battle.

Given these mechanisms, the query for individuals who wish to preserve an open system of variety based mostly on shared values comparable to ethnic balancing and inter-ethnic participation, cultural interchange, variety expressed by the rule of regulation, institutionalized equality, and the “normalization” of narratives of “positivity” with regard to ethic pluralism is: The place are the confirmed and environment friendly counter-models to the brand new tribalism within the garments of ethnonationalism? The place particularly do we discover fashions that combine the optimistic driving forces of ethnicity and “identification politics” right into a better image of differentiated modernization, scale, and institutionalized group relations whereas concurrently firmly rejecting threats to variety? Fashions which, final however not least, show that “identification politics” mustn’t ever be one thing damaging, as US-theorists like Francis Fukuyama have asserted all too simply in a principally U.S.-centric view (Fukuyama 2018), however which rely upon the historic setting and context, and may in precept be one thing optimistic for particular ethnic teams sharing restricted dwelling areas with different ethnic teams, as it’s the norm in Central and Central Japanese Europe?

To reply these questions, one mannequin deserves specific consideration: the small autonomous space of South Tyrol within the Central European Alps. At present the realm continues to domesticate a particular “Consociational Autonomy” (Peterlini 1997; Peterlini 2013) achieved in 1972 that’s, within the eyes of many European politicians comparable to EU Fee (the factual EU authorities) President Jean-Claude Juncker, “the” European mannequin association of anti-tribal politics oriented in direction of positively institutionalizing the identification politics of various ethnic teams, but with an edge. The world of South Tyrol is considered the present finest mannequin of how a pluri-ethnic and trans-cultural “Europe of areas” might look within the service of the better European unification challenge, based mostly not solely on goodwill however on authorized justice and the rule of regulation utilized to “Cultural Democracy” (Adams and Goldbard 1995; ECHIC 2019). Many Europeans see South Tyrol as a laboratory of a “Europe product of areas”, as a substitute for a Europe of culturally homogenous nation-states. It’s considered a mannequin of hope significantly at a troublesome time of majority-minority relations, in addition to “an attention-grabbing counter-example to different contested areas, comparable to Catalonia and Scotland” (Larin and Röggla 2017).

Because the South Tyrol mannequin is approaching its fiftieth anniversary in 2022, it’s seen by its representatives and worldwide observers as a mature and confirmed mannequin of shared and joint ethnic emancipation based mostly on the institutionalized relationship between teams that’s prolonged to the rights of people inside the framework of a far-reaching territorial autonomy. But can this mannequin proceed to develop to the excessive expectations of main European statesmen, who see it as “the” instance of how Europe can develop collectively by integrating completely different languages, historic remembrances, socio-political founding myths, and cultures by combining group and particular person identification processes by way of the overarching and integrating narrative of “Autonomy Patriotism”? This time period was coined since 2016 by South Tyrol’s autonomous governor Arno Kompatscher (Winkler 2018; Nindler and Mitterwachauer 2018; UnserTirol24.com 2018) as a “glocalized” variant of German thinker Jürgen Habermas’ “Constitutional Patriotism” – a part of his better consideration of the potential of “multiculturalism within the liberal state” (Habermas 1994; Calhoun 2002; Müller 2006).

South Tyrol: A post-tribal mannequin to counter the mantra of European regression

One present mantra in america goes: “The entire of Europe is on the best way to re-nationalization.” Partly true. But the entire of Europe? No. A tiny little space withstands the strain and insists on its distinctive post-national, pluri-ethnic, and post-tribal association: South Tyrol within the Italian Central European Alps, situated within the midst of Switzerland, Austria, and Italy.

Since 1972, the small border area of South Tyrol in Northern Italy with its three conventional ethnic teams – Austrian, Italian and Raetoroman (Ladin) – has developed and repeatedly expanded a particular territorial autonomy association with the concept of constructing an institutional bridge between the German- and Italian-speaking worlds as a constituent a part of the European means of reordering and restructuring by way of transnational pacification and unification, together with the establishment of territorial autonomies for ethnic minorities. The particular South Tyrol autonomy mannequin proves that the destiny of European variety will proceed to not solely be determined by the micro-politics of equality and participation and by managing the cultural and ethnic traits of migration but in addition by authorized group preparations regulating multi-ethnicity by imposing the idea of “Tolerance by regulation” (Pföstl s.a.; Woelk, Palermo and Marko 2008). The South Tyrol mannequin of territorial autonomy signifies {that a} optimistic different to tribal politics and the return of ethnonationalism is feasible, a mannequin that concurrently integrates their potential underlying optimistic driving forces, so far as doable.

Maybe most essential: The South Tyrol mannequin has the benefit of working underneath confirmed and real-life situations and 50 years of sensible down-to-earth expertise. It supplies a bridge between post-tribal, ethnic, group- and pluricultural preparations, together with a non-exclusive secular identification idea associated to the territory which might change into exemplary for the better European unification idea, and maybe even for the upcoming want for better inter-civilizational joint identification constructing in a world that’s getting smaller and the place completely different persons are dwelling in nearer proximity to one another every single day.

 “The perfect mannequin of ethnic pacification in Europe”: A brief overview

South Tyrol is a tiny space within the Italian Central Alps within the midst of Italy, Switzerland, and Austria with a inhabitants of round 550,000 individuals. For the reason that begin of the 20th century, three completely different historic ethnic teams have been dwelling combined collectively on its territory, in a good house the place they actually can’t escape from one another: the Austrian minorities of German and Raetoroman (Ladin) audio system (68 p.c and 4 p.c respectively), and the Italian nationwide inhabitants (28 p.c). (These figures exclude non-national residents, who in 2018 made up round an extra 15%.) As a way to pacify their former ethnic conflicts, a mannequin of “tolerance by regulation” has been developed which has now confirmed its effectivity over nearly 5 a long time. Certainly, in line with EU Fee president Jean-Claude Juncker (ANSA 2016), “South Tyrol immediately is the most effective mannequin of ethnic battle pacification and intercultural integration in Europe”. In keeping with Juncker, this features a mannequin function with regard to the post-national and post-tribal “Europeanization” of conventional cultural identities. Though the South Tyrol mannequin of learn how to cope with ethnic variety via a authorized association anchored within the nationwide Italian structure may initially sound complicated attributable to its excessive stage of differentiation, it’s value it intimately in order that it could serve for example for different instances of cultural and ethnic conflicts that must be solved.

To start out with the fundamentals: the Autonomous Province of Bolzano-South Tyrol options an impartial legislative mannequin of regional authorities and self-government that’s firmly established within the Italian Structure and secured by worldwide agreements and EU supervision. Since 1972, departing from its origins within the safety of ethnic minorities, this mannequin has established itself by way of numerous successive phases of growth as a wide-ranging territorial autonomy within the service of all three predominant ethnic teams dwelling on the territory.

The principle purpose of the South Tyrol autonomy was initially to guard the German- and Ladin-speaking Austrian minorities in Italy by way of the legally prescribed participation within the territorial autonomous authorities of all three predominant ethnic teams resident within the space: German-, Ladin- and Italian-speakers. The South Tyrol mannequin of “tolerance by regulation” additionally included from the start

  • the retention of a excessive share of the taxes levied within the province which is then assigned in proportion to the inhabitants teams, as an illustration by cultural and education sector;
  • the equality of languages earlier than the courtroom;
  • and the prescription of multilingualism for all public officers by regulation.

As a consequence of its success, which made the initially poor autonomous space now one of many wealthiest in Europe, over the previous a long time the South Tyrol mannequin has typically been mentioned by organizations such because the United Nations (UN) and Worldwide Coverage Institutes as a mannequin for the answer of ethnic conflicts in different settings, together with the Put up-Soviet House (Mikhelidze and Tocci 2012), East Ukraine, West Sahara, Chechnya, and Tibet. This is the reason the Dalai Lama, for instance, with the intention of getting the same association for Tibet from China, despatched his personal examine teams over a long time to the South Tyrol province’s capital, Bozen-Bolzano, to check the South Tyrol mannequin of autonomous self-governance and self-administration on the province’s predominant think-tank Eurac Analysis (Eurac Analysis 2019).  

A posh historic background

The South Tyrol autonomy builds on a fancy historical past of ethnic battle, as is the case in lots of locations in Europe, significantly in former or present border areas and areas the place ethnic and cultural minorities stay carefully along with nationwide majorities (Gyinesi 2018; Alber and Zwilling 2016). Till the top of the primary world battle (1918) South Tyrol, together with what’s now the Austrian province of Tyrol within the adjoining north and the Italian province of Trentino within the south, shaped the “Tyrol Heartland” of the Austro-Hungarian Habsburg monarchy (Österreichische Mediathek 2000).

Ninety-five p.c of the province’s inhabitants have been culturally Austrian, with German as their native tongue (Leidlmair 1958). Following the dissolution of the Habsburg Monarchy on the finish of the primary world battle, the southern a part of Tyrol was annexed by Italy with the treaty of St. Germain in 1919, in opposition to the need of the inhabitants. Three years later (1922) Benito Mussolini and Italian Fascism got here to energy, which was hostile to all cultural variety. Specializing in nationwide “homogenization”, Mussolini started to Italianize the annexed territory utilizing systematic and arranged violence (Steininger 1995-2011).

The strategies employed – apart from homicide, abduction, and systematic intimidation – have been an Italianization coverage by way of mass immigration with the substitute settlement of greater than 100,000 Italians inside only a few years, abolishing Austrian place names and changing them with Italian names randomly fabricated by fascist Ettore Tolomei inside only a few summer time months. Mussolini’s strategies additionally included banning German-speaking faculty classes and the German language in public workplaces and courtroom, partly additionally in public. It went thus far that in lots of instances even the Austrian names on gravestones have been changed by artificially Italianized names. By a megalomaniac constructing program, the provincial capital Bozen (German), now Bolzano (Italian), was conceived by Fascism as “the” fascist mannequin metropolis within the coronary heart of Europe, near the German-speaking world. After Italianizing its title, essentially the most well-known fascist architects meant to make Bozen “the” instance of what fascism was able to, including a victory monument, together with a patriotic “altar”, and a statue of Mussolini “Il Duce” himself to observe over the native inhabitants. They deliberate to raze the unique Austrian metropolis to the bottom and change it from scratch with fascist monumental structure. If Hitler had his mannequin metropolis of Linz (Austria), Mussolini’s “good” and “complete” dream metropolis of the longer term was not Rome, however a totally renewed and Italianized Bozen-Bolzano (Obermair 2017).

Within the 1910 census, the final earlier than the primary world battle and the start of fascist Italianization politics, there have been 17,339 Italian-speaking inhabitants registered in South Tyrol (2.9% of the inhabitants). The Italian inhabitants grew quickly within the Thirties, when inside a number of years 1000’s of commercial staff have been artificially settled, though South Tyrol traditionally had no mentionable business. Sadly, within the years following the top of the second world battle in 1945, the previous Fascist Italianization politics continued with the substitute import of Italian migrants, now by the hands of Italy’s first democratic authorities. It reached its peak in 1961 with 34.3% of the inhabitants. Since then the Italian share of the inhabitants has decreased barely however is holding regular at round 28%.

After the defeat of nationwide socialism and fascism and the top of the second world battle (1945), representatives from South Tyrol and the provisional Austrian authorities started to work on the nationwide reintegration of South Tyrol with Austria. The allies rejected these efforts primarily for military-strategic causes, regardless of the demand for a referendum put ahead by 80% of the inhabitants, and regardless of huge demonstrations. Italy was now a part of the Western alliance and a strategically essential issue within the dispute that was beginning with the Soviet Union. Austria, however, was occupied by the Soviets and confronted an unknown future between East and West. An argument escalated between Austria and Italy over the standing of South Tyrol and who it belonged to (Steininger 1995-2011).

The one approach to resolve the dispute was now by way of direct negotiations between each international locations over an exemplary compromise: wide-ranging autonomous self-regulation for South Tyrol inside the framework of Austria’s function as “defending energy”, whereas nonetheless belonging to Italy. On September 5, 1946, the so-called “Paris Treaty” was signed by the International Ministers of Austria and Italy, Karl Gruber and Alcide Degasperi. By its personal legal guidelines and decrees, the province’s authentic Austrian inhabitants can be assured equality of the German language with the Italian language in all public issues in addition to the preservation of its tradition, ethnic customs, and traditions.

Within the following years, nevertheless, Italy didn’t fulfill its obligations of the Paris Treaty. The province of South Tyrol was included right into a better area, the Autonomous Area of Trentino-South Tyrol, the place the Italian inhabitants was within the majority, overriding the Austrian minority’s rights to autonomy. The important thing difficulty was that the South Tyrol province had no adequate sub-autonomy inside the autonomous area. On the identical time, Italianization politics continued with sturdy residential building and immigration. This led to civil war-like unrest on the finish of the Fifties. Due to this fact, in September 1959, the then Austrian International Minister, Bruno Kreisky, introduced the so-called “South Tyrol Query” earlier than the UN Safety Council in New York. On the identical time ethnically and nationalistically motivated secession efforts elevated. In 1961 pro-Austrian separatists carried out a sequence of bomb assaults to attempt to reunify South Tyrol with Austria by pressure, with 37 assaults within the night time of 10-11 June 1961 alone, the so-called “South Tyrol Night time of Fireplace”(Südtiroler Feuernacht) (Steininger 1995-2011).

Negotiations between Italy and Germany have been subsequently intensified and shortly reached a provisional, amicable conclusion. A greater resolution for provincial autonomy was discovered, which supplied that South Tyrol ought to steadily attain wide-ranging self-government within the type of a strongly developed sub-autonomy inside the autonomous area of Trentino-South Tyrol, whereas on the identical time remaining each elements of this area and the nation-state of Italy. This resolution for provincial autonomy was supported on 23 November 1969 by the ethnic-cultural “collective occasion” (Sammelpartei) of South Tyroleans of Austrian cultural origin (i.e. German- and Ladin-speakers) based in 1946, the South Tyrolean Individuals’s Occasion (SVP). This assist however was achieved solely after severe inside disputes which introduced the occasion to the brink of breaking up, since round half of its representatives have been of the opinion {that a} clear break up and return of the province to Austria within the framework of the proper of self-determination (UNPO 2017a; UNPO 2017b; Danspeckgruber 2002;  Danspeckgruber 2017) as coined by 20th-century political leaders comparable to Lenin, Wilson, Roosevelt and Churchill and later tailored by the United Nations Constitution (United Nations 1945) can be preferable. The answer of a far-reaching provincial autonomy for South Tyrol inside the Italian nationwide state was subsequently additionally endorsed by the Italian and Austrian governments. In 1972 the so-called “new” or “second” Autonomy Statute got here into pressure which – and this stays exemplary internationally to the current day – is a constitutional regulation of the Italian Republic and may solely be modified with a 2/3 majority vote of the nationwide Parliament, and with the worldwide settlement of the European Union underneath the auspices of the UN.

Over the next 20 years, from 1972 to 1992, these authorized foundations have been managed by Italy little by little with some powerful wrestling at instances between South Tyrol’s ruling SVP occasion, i.e. the (formally) meta-ideological consultant of South Tyrol’s Austria-stemming minorities, the “defending energy” Austria and quickly altering governments in Rome. For the reason that provincial autonomy began to ensure South Tyrol efficient self-management in a few of the most essential “identities” areas comparable to tradition and education, in 1992 there was a declaration of dispute decision by mutual settlement between Austria and Italy. Consent from the Austrian minority ethnic collective occasion, the SVP, for this declaration adopted after a proper diplomatic notice, during which Italy delivered its official report on the implementation of the South Tyrol provincial Autonomy Statute, making specific reference to the Paris Treaty of 1946 and thus making certain that any breach of the settlement remained actionable earlier than worldwide judicial authorities.

Since then, the declaration of dispute decision has marked a provisional conclusion to the South Tyrol dispute, though the autonomy regulation for the province remains to be growing dynamically by way of software, scope, legitimacy, public involvement, and self-identity. Latest reforms of the Italian structure, amongst others initiated by the federal government of premier Matteo Renzi (2014-16), have, nevertheless, put some query marks on facets of it, making diversifications essential. The precise extent of such modifications stays open because of the repeated delay and postponement of Italian nationwide systemic reforms (Eurac Monitoring Centre on Autonomies 2019; Benedikter 2016; Woelk, Palermo and Marko 2008).

Organizing variety, the South Tyrolean method

Summing up, the important thing to pacification was the implementation of the so-called “Second Autonomy Statute”, a form of particular sub-constitution anchored in Italy’s nationwide structure, in 1972. Since then, as talked about, a “dynamic autonomy” has been practiced, which means that the autonomous province subsequently gained energy. In 1992, the declaration of the top of hostilities between Austria and Italy made the province positively “the” instance of how the institutionalization of various ethnocultural and ethnohistoric variety could be fruitful to pacify ethnic identification conflicts in Europe by way of “tolerance by regulation”, i.e. via a far-reaching self-administration together with partial monetary, political and academic autonomies for the ethnic teams represented within the province’s autonomous parliament. This stays de facto impartial of the autonomous area’s joint parliament of the 2 provinces Trentino and South Tyrol, which collectively represent the autonomous area of Trentino-South Tyrol.

Seen from the present view, the decisive facet of South Tyrol’s particular association is that its autonomy is consociational to its core (Peterlini 2009; Peterlini 2013). Amongst different rules, all three ethnic teams should be included by regulation within the autonomous provincial authorities. As talked about, public cash and workplaces are distributed among the many ethnic teams in line with census percentages – the so-called “proportional” system. It implies that in precept an ethnic group will get cash for its particular functions (comparable to tradition or education) in line with its share within the inhabitants dwelling on the territory. There are three completely different faculty methods permitting for each ethnic group to have public training totally free in their very own mom tongue. But each citizen is free to ship their kids to any faculty they wish to. Many Italians these days ship their kids to German-speaking public colleges, creating the paradoxical state of affairs that in some instances there are extra native Italian audio system in German-speaking colleges (meant for the preservation of the language and tradition of the Austrian German-speaking minority) than native German audio system. Given that every one residents on the territory have to talk at the least two languages to entry public posts, this prevents the Italianization or Germanization of the general public administration.

Most essential: the advantages of autonomy are shared, with all residents dwelling in stability on the territory, reworking the initially ethnically motivated autonomy association de facto from an ethnic to territorial autonomy. This advantages the Austrian-stemming minorities and the Italian nationwide inhabitants dwelling on the territory equally, and on this sense, there is no such thing as a distinction between the rights and duties of minorities and majorities dwelling within the space.

Such systemic consociationalism which concurrently unifies and differentiates the wants of the three predominant ethnic teams has led to the peaceable coexistence of beforehand conflicting identities. The result’s that the province of South Tyrol, one of many poorest areas in Central Europe on the finish of the second world battle, has reworked into certainly one of Europe’s most affluent areas, socially and economically.

Features of critique

Nonetheless, critics have identified that such institutionalization of ethnic-cultural differentiation could have the damaging impact of hindering the event of a joint overarching identification, in addition to stopping the emergence of a extra fluid idea of territorial “trans-locality” (Guelke 2012). As well as, South Tyrol’s particular association for the reason that 2000s and significantly since Europe’s refugee and migration disaster since 2015 faces the brand new problem of sturdy non-EU immigration, which is making a state of affairs of traditionally-local (“previous”) versus incoming-global (“new”) minorities (Carlà 2018) of very completely different identification patterns, together with, particularly, cultural and spiritual variations inflicting fears of discontinuity within the system (Rautz 2015; Rautz 2017). Moreover, the ethnic identities on which the South Tyrolean mannequin has been based mostly are challenged by persevering with individualization and “glocalization”, i.e. the development in direction of the dissolution of ethnic belonging and territorial binding, which can be a development within the growth of European Union regulation. It’s not often explicitly thought-about that a big a part of the migration, significantly to the Alpine mountainous zones that are to some extent indifferent from the city centres of attraction, is compelled migration, with completely different causes and driving forces nonetheless to be totally understood in each the origins and results (Membretti, Dematteis and Di Gioia 2018).

Whereas some imagine that the answer is a brand new, extra “impartial” European meta-identity idea the place every and all people conceives themselves as “minorities” and the place there are not any extra majorities in notion in any respect, making a primary perspective to which some Central Japanese and Japanese European areas have been used to for hundreds of years (“subcutaneous identities”), others level out that the way forward for the time period “consociational” in Europe could relatively lie in a stability between – and within the preferrred case integration of – each ethnic and meta-ethnic identities.

Seen from such a viewpoint, the territory-centered method of “Autonomy Patriotism” (Winkler 2018; Nindler and Mitterwachauer 2018; UnserTirol24.com 2018) might change into a brand new, programmatically transcultural – and inclusively meta-ethnic, but non-culture-neutralizing – the idea of civil faith devoted to implementing an overarching secular sense of belonging to a territory, whereas not reacting aggressively in opposition to extra conventional ethnic identification ideas, relatively together with them in a better joint imaginative and prescient. In essence, such meta-ethnic identification within the sense of “autonomy patriotism” can be explicitly not conceived as non-ethnic or post-cultural identification. Its predominant purpose should be to pave the best way for a better European identification idea of “unity in variety” – with each poles “unity” and “variety” in continued and secure stability – following the define of the EU motto “Unity in variety”. “Unity in variety” is, in the interim, not a path in direction of a selected aim or remaining house, nor to a exactly circumscribed, specific identification idea (Karolewski 2016), however relatively a levitation idea, with an open final result.

Implications and views

Lately, the South Tyrolean autonomy has been considered an exemplary response to questions of rigidity between re-nationalization and re-localization, which appears to have change into one of many core situations to be handled within the better European context. South Tyrol’s growing administrative and governmental cooperation bonds with the Austrian Tyrol province within the north and the Italian Trentino province within the south purpose to create a trans-border area referred to as the “European Area of Tyrol”, which sooner or later might embrace sure joint governmental choices. The “European Area of Tyrol” is regarded by many as an exemplary transnational mannequin of how a united Europe might work by the technique of denationalization and regionalization. Within the coming years, the idea of “Autonomy Patriotism” coined by South Tyrol’s governor Arno Kompatscher (Nindler and Mitterwachauer 2018) is also utilized to this better framework. Since 2017 a debate has been operating over the issuing of twin Austrian-Italian passports for members of South Tyrol’s German and Ladin ethnic teams. The query is that if this will likely assist the transnational unification and “Autonomy Patriotism” or not.

It could be reductionist and an excessive amount of of a simplification to say that the South Tyrol mannequin overcomes the damaging sides of tribalism by preserving and valorizing its optimistic facets. Fairly, this mannequin means that as a trans- and to a sure extent meta-cultural and pluri-ethnic mannequin of territorial belonging it doesn’t imagine within the supremacy of tradition over politics. Quite the opposite, the idea of “Autonomy Patriotism” tries to stability each, with out privileging one at the price of the opposite. If there may be at present a revival of the Gramsci custom each on the left and proper wings of populism (Benedikter 2017) decoding tradition because the prerequisite of politics (BBC radio on populism) and thus implicitly making the case for a revival of tradition (and beliefs) each inside politics and as a way of politics with a selected development towards populist positions, the South Tyrol mannequin suggests the alternative: that politics can valorize and on the identical time grasp cultural variations, together with ethnic ones.

In flip, since South Tyrol is taken into account a European mannequin area of ethnic and transnational integration, it’s and stays extra depending on the European unification challenge than different areas and territories. Whereas after a long time of efforts South Tyrol feels in some ways extra European than surrounding areas comparable to East Switzerland, Northern Tyrol or Trentino, it’s in flip additionally extra affected by European and international developments. For instance, South Tyrol at present appears to have change into the primary goal of Chinese language funding, for the reason that space is situated instantly on the south-north passage of the so-called New Silk Highway between the port of Trieste, a strategic aim of China’s funding initiative, and Munich, certainly one of its predominant locations. On the identical time, South Tyrol stays among the many few dozen wealthiest European areas exactly due to its territorial autonomy, which stays one of many farthest-reaching and best in European historical past for the advantage of all residents on the territory. To additional develop the mannequin, each continued participation “from under” by way of involving the civil society comprising all ethnic teams, and fixed “ethnographic restore work” should be applied as a unending course of.


All in all, South Tyrol’s consociational autonomy is a post-national mannequin association of multiethnicity, pluriculturally, and European variety administration, in a nutshell, enacted by way of “tolerance by regulation”, at present growing towards the overarching identification idea of “Autonomy Patriotism”. Its decades-long evolutionary historical past can function a storehouse of expertise for different multi-lingual and transnational experiments with variety and distinction. But it is only one – fairly particular – mannequin amongst others, and it presents its execs and cons like all different approaches. Provided that historical past is and stays a superhuman course of made by people, which can’t be utterly mastered, however simply influenced, as a lot as doable, by rational and humanistic issues following the teachings or the enlightenment custom, politics can solely be optimistic, though it can not management every part. This stays true additionally for European variety and complexity administration as a complete. It stays true particularly for the socio-culturally and socio-politically typically over-complex pluricultural and multi-ethnic environments in Europe, that are partly additionally particular to Europe and current profoundly completely different traits in comparison with the ethnic and identification questions in different elements of the world, for instance in america, central China or Russia.

Elements of this textual content are based mostly on the official info on the South Tyrol Autonomy mannequin supplied by the Autonomous Authorities of South Tyrol, for instance at: “This is South Tyrol”, accessed 16 July 2021, and earlier variations and editions.

Determine 1: South Tyrol – Picture by TUBS/Wikimedia Commons


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