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Neither melting pot nor mosaic. Linz as a regional centre – an assessment

The Landstraße as pedestrian precinct 1977

Direct comparison of  the local development in Linz with that in other cities shows that Linz was shaped by regional immigration, making it a “regional centre”, not a “melting pot” like Vienna, nor a “mosaic” such as the city of Czernowitz during the Habsburg monarchy.

The specific composition of the population and the “regional centre” migration pattern matched a characteristic development in questions of ethnic and cultural identity.

The thesis according to which the form of a “regional centre”, with Linz as an example, is connected to a specific mental pattern with main stream characteristics is primarily addressed by public discourse, but also on the basis of further indicators.

One can use the terms “provincial patriotism”, “provincial nationalism” or ”regional nationalism”; the classification of “provincial patriotism” can be observed as late as the sixties in various variations, and was only interrupted by Nazi rule, when a state-imposed racial hierarchy dominated; from the late 1960s on “provincial patriotism” is gradually replaced by a more open and liberal model.

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