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Nationality and Internationality Part 2

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For Kautsky, language and education are at the heart of the rise of national identification. The rise of capitalism leads to a need for common languages, particularly in the army. Intellectuals are particularly attached to their own language and culture. The bureaucracy of the state needs to have a common language and attempts to use the teaching of language for this purpose, which leads to opposition and the rise of nationalism, and the demand for separation. The rise of democracy has a similar effect in that democratic forms require discussion and intelligibility. Kautsky discusses the nature of a multi-national state and Austria in particular, criticising Otto Bauer for not paying enough attention to language and for paying too much to culture in general. He brings out the difficulty in introducing local autonomy for national entities, within capitalism, and points out that the there is little point in a federal Austria, when Europe itself is moving towards a federation. He argues that 'it is essential to find the synthesis between national autonomy and a centralist union; the synthesis of those principles, both of which are necessary for the victory of the proletariat.' He rejects the idea that the national question in Austria will be solved under capitalism, although he does not expect to see Austria's disintegration.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2010

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