The Liberal International

Required reading:

Maurizio Isabella, “Mazzini’s Internationalism in Context: From Cosmopolitan Patriotism of the Italian Carbonari to Mazzini’s Europe of the Nations,” Giuseppe Mazzini and the Globalisation of Democratic Nationalism, 1830-1920, eds., C. A. Bayly and Eugenio F. Biagini (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008)

Lucy Riall, “Nation and Risorgimento,” Garibaldi: Invention of a Hero (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2008).

Karma Nabulsi, “Patriotism and Internationalism in the ‘Oath of Allegiance’ to Young Europe,” European Journal of Political Theory, 5:1 (January 2006)

Seminar Topics

In the wake of the Napoleonic Wars, revolutionary sentiments continued to smolder in Europe, producing liberal movements and secret societies that animated politics in Spain, Italy and the Mediterranean world. These outbreaks were connected through political actors and mutual declarations of support just as much as abstract principles and ideas. Seminar discussion will consider how we can assess revolutions within a transnational framework, looking at the development of common themes focused on patriotism and liberty that were developed by numerous societies spanning national borders. Attention will be given to how political actors conceptualized their respective movements and attempted to bolster liberal sentiments suitable to both national and international contexts in a post-Napoleonic Europe and question to what extent these movements marked a continuation of the revolutions from the late eighteenth century or a new phase in Europe’s emergent revolutionary tradition.

Questions to consider:

  1. How did ideas of cosmopolitanism inspire democratic movements in the post-Napoleonic period?
  2. Was Mazzini’s Young Europe movement truly internationalist? What role did the nation play in this new cosmopolitan order?
  3. To what extent did the revolutions of the 1820s contribute to the imagining of a common Mediterranean patrimony?
  4. What role did small, conspiratorial organizations like the Carbonari play in fomenting revolution in the early nineteenth century?

Further Reading

Christiana Brennecke, Von Cádiz nach London: Spanischer Liberalismus im Spannungsfeld von nationaler Selbstbestimmung, Internationalität und Exil, 1820-1833. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, 2010.

Sylvia Neely, Lafayette and the Liberal Ideal, 1814-1824: Politics and Conspiracy in an Age of Reaction. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1991.

Maurizio Isabella, Risorgimento in Exile: Italian Émigrés and the Liberal International in the Post-Revolutionary Era. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009.

Richard Stites, The Four Horsemen: Riding to Liberty in Post-Napoleonic Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014.

John A. Davis, Naples and Napoleon: Southern Italy and the European Revolutions, 1780-1860. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006. Chapters 14-15.

Alan Spitzer, Old Hatreds and Young Hopes: The French Carbonari Against the Bourbon Restoration. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1971.

Sudhir Hazareesingh, “Memory, Legend and Politics: Napoleonic Patriotism in the Restoration Era,” The European Journal of Political Theory, 5:1 (2006)