South Tyrol

South Tyrol : A Minority Conflict of the Twentieth Century

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Description

South Tyrol, a region in the heart of the Alps about half the size of Connecticut, brings into sharp focus an important part of twentieth-century history. Tyrol, a province that had been part of Austria for over 500 years and was almost totally German-speaking, was split in two after World War I and the southern part awarded to Italy as "spoils of war."The first phase to follow after the split of Tyrol was systematic subjection by the Italian Fascists of what had been a regional majority in South Tyrol, but was now a minority within Italy. In a second phase, to gain an Italian majority, the country was settled with Italians from the south, who had a totally different mentality from the Italians residing in South Tyrol. With the emergence of National Socialism in Germany, and eventually with the Hitler-Mussolini Agreement of 1939, a third phase emerged: an experiment in "ethnic cleansing" called the "Option." Eighty-six percent of all South Tyroleans agreed to leave South Tyrol and become citizens of "Greater Germany." After World War II, the region was not returned to Austria: South Tyrol became the first victim of the Cold War. It took almost forty years of hard bargaining before South Tyrol was granted real autonomy in 1969. This resolution is now regarded as a model for solving minority conflicts.Rolf Steininger traces the history of this troubled region during several periods: 1918-1922, in which he covers the period from the division of Tyrol to the march on Bozen; 1922-1938, in which he reviews fascist policy towards South Tyrol; the "Option" of 1939; the resettlement and so-called reunification from 1943-1945; South Tyrol's role as a bargaining chip in the Cold War, and the Gruber-Gasperi Agreement of 1946; and the volume closes with a discussion of the plan negotiated in 1969 for a new autonomy for South Tyrol that came to be known as the "Package.".
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Product details

  • Paperback | 182 pages
  • 151.4 x 223.5 x 12.4mm | 299.38g
  • Transaction Publishers
  • Somerset, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New
  • 0765808005
  • 9780765808004
  • 1,627,566

Review quote

" ... Steininger demonstrates with brutal clarity is the inability of small ethnic communities to determine their own destiny." - " German Studies Review " -The South Tyrol, or Alto Adige, became Italian with the treaties ending WW I. Austrian since the Middle Ages, it was mostly German and Ladinian speaking. Because Austria lost the war and Italy helped the Allies win it, Italy's reward was the push to the Brenner/Brennero below Innsbruck. From 1922 to 1945, the fascists launched campaigns to eliminate German from schools, Italianize German names, remove German speakers from public offices, and so on. When Mussolini and Hitler became allies, they agreed that German speakers should be removed from the region and replaced by Italians, but the concept did not work. Even after WW II, normalization did not come about until the late 1960s. Today, Italians and German speakers live in some harmony, both seeing advantages to the compromise in which German, Italian, and Ladinian are spoken, as amazing modernization proceeds as quickly as in the rest of mountainous Europe. Luckily for South Tyrol, it became part of Italy at a time when taking over foreign ethnic groups gradually became taboo. Steininger (Univ. of Innsbruck) gives a good overview of this troubled history, telling it from the German speakers' point of view. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above.-

--P. Petschauer, Choice

- ... Steininger demonstrates with brutal clarity is the inability of small ethnic communities to determine their own destiny.-

--German Studies Review "The South Tyrol, or Alto Adige, became Italian with the treaties ending WW I. Austrian since the Middle Ages, it was mostly German and Ladinian speaking. Because Austria lost the war and Italy helped the Allies win it, Italy's reward was the push to the Brenner/Brennero below Innsbruck. From 1922 to 1945, the fascists launched campaigns to eliminate German from schools, Italianize German names, remove German speakers from public offices, and so on. When Mussolini and Hitler became allies, they agreed that German speakers should be removed from the region and replaced by Italians, but the concept did not work. Even after WW II, normalization did not come about until the late 1960s. Today, Italians and German speakers live in some harmony, both seeing advantages to the compromise in which German, Italian, and Ladinian are spoken, as amazing modernization proceeds as quickly as in the rest of mountainous Europe. Luckily for South Tyrol, it became part of Italy at a time when taking over foreign ethnic groups gradually became taboo. Steininger (Univ. of Innsbruck) gives a good overview of this troubled history, telling it from the German speakers' point of view. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above."

--P. Petschauer, Choice

" ... Steininger demonstrates with brutal clarity is the inability of small ethnic communities to determine their own destiny."

--German Studies Review "The South Tyrol, or Alto Adige, became Italian with the treaties ending WW I. Austrian since the Middle Ages, it was mostly German and Ladinian speaking. Because Austria lost the war and Italy helped the Allies win it, Italy's reward was the push to the Brenner/Brennero below Innsbruck. From 1922 to 1945, the fascists launched campaigns to eliminate German from schools, Italianize German names, remove German speakers from public offices, and so on. When Mussolini and Hitler became allies, they agreed that German speakers should be removed from the region and replaced by Italians, but the concept did not work. Even after WW II, normalization did not come about until the late 1960s. Today, Italians and German speakers live in some harmony, both seeing advantages to the compromise in which German, Italian, and Ladinian are spoken, as amazing modernization proceeds as quickly as in the rest of mountainous Europe. Luckily for South Tyrol, it became part of Italy at a time when taking over foreign ethnic groups gradually became taboo. Steininger (Univ. of Innsbruck) gives a good overview of this troubled history, telling it from the German speakers' point of view. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above."

--P. Petschauer, Choice

" ... Steininger demonstrates with brutal clarity is the inability of small ethnic communities to determine their own destiny."

--G"erman Studies Review "
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