ABSTRACT

Religion was a powerful element of mobilisation in the first and second phases of ethnic reactions and was defended by the first ethnic mobilisations. This chapter focuses on peripheral national groups and their relation with religion. The construction of a national culture by the centre is likely to provoke everywhere the resistance of peripheral groups that differ from it in ethnic, religious or linguistic terms. Even though religious and linguistic discrimination constitutes a denial of the central imaginary of the nation-state, which would foster the belief in equal access for all citizens to national culture, both have an inverted relationship with the change from traditional to modern society. In the 1950s and 1960s, the Basque Church was the refuge of the Basque language and culture. In France, from 1880 onwards, the church-state conflict produced different school history text books in Catholic and public schools.