Conflicting Cantonalisms: Disputed Sub-national Territorial Identities in Switzerland

Müller, Sean (2013). Conflicting Cantonalisms: Disputed Sub-national Territorial Identities in Switzerland. L’Europe en Formation, 2013/3(369), pp. 86-102. Centre international de formation européenne 10.3917/eufor.369.0086

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The importance of constituent units for democratic federations, in general, and of the Swiss cantons for the Swiss Confederation, in particular, is beyond doubt. What is less clear, however, is how to solve conflicting views on the number and type of such units. The Swiss case offers two highly topical examples in this regard: the merger of the two ‘half-cantons’ Basel-City and Basel-Country, on the one hand, and the creation of a new canton encompassing canton Jura and the French-speaking area of canton Berne, on the other. In comparing different sub-national political identities at play in these two cases, the strength of ‘cantonalism’—understood as attachment to and identification with a canton—in Switzerland in the 21st century is shown. Second, different manifestations of cantonalism are compared: centre-periphery in Basel, linguistic vs. religious in Jura. Finally, the similar direct-democratic pathways chosen to solve both conflicting understandings of cantonalism testify to the Swiss commitment to peaceful, negotiated and popularly sanctioned settlements.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Institute of Political Science
03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Müller, Sean

Subjects:

300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science

ISSN:

0014-2808

Publisher:

Centre international de formation européenne

Language:

English

Submitter:

Sean Müller

Date Deposited:

10 Nov 2014 09:03

Last Modified:

11 Sep 2017 19:40

Publisher DOI:

10.3917/eufor.369.0086

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.59765

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/59765

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