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Encyclopedia > Imperial Germans

Imperial Germans is the common translation of the German word Reichsdeutsche (adj. reichsdeutsch). It refers to German citizens, and by the word sense means people coming from the German Empire, i.e. Imperial Germany or Deutsches Reich, between 1871 and 1945 (and later when referring historically to these times). Citizenship is membership in a political community (originally a city but now a state), and carries with it rights to political participation; a person having such membership is a citizen. ... The term German Empire (Deutsches Reich) commonly refers to Germany, from its consolidation as a unified nation-state on January 18, 1871, until the abdication of Kaiser (Emperor) Wilhelm II on November 9, 1918. ... Reich is the German word for realm or empire, cognate with Scandinavian rike and Dutch rijk. ...


The key problem with the terms reichsdeutsch, volksdeutsch, auslandsdeutsch, and related ones is that the usage of the words often depends on context, i.e. who uses them where and when. There are, in that sense, no general legal or "right" definitions, although during the 20th century, all terms acquired legal — yet also changing — definitions. Volksdeutsche (ethnic Germans) is a historical term which arose in the early 20th century to apply for Germans living outside of the German Empire. ... Auslandsdeutsche (Germans abroad; adj. ... ConTEXT is a freeware text editor directed at programmers. ...


The reason for the differentiation is that there has been a historical shift in the meaning of what belonging to a nation means. Until the 19th century, a term such as German was not too meaningful, although the concept certainly existed. If anything, it was more seen as a cultural concept (including language, religion (in different forms), and already sometimes race in a vague sense). Only with the 1871 unification of Germany under Prussian leadership did some concepts acquire a legal-political meaning, which they have retained until now. A nation is an imagined community of people created by a national ideology, to which certain norms and behavior are usually attributed. ... A race is a distinct population of humans distinguished in some way from other humans. ... 1871 was a common year starting on Sunday (see link for calendar). ... See also: Unification Church Unification can also refer to the German reunification of East and West Germany. ... The coat of arms of the Kingdom of Prussia, 1701-1918 The word Prussia (German: Preußen or Preussen, Polish: Prusy, Lithuanian: Prūsai, Latin: Borussia) has had various (often contradictory) meanings: The land of the Baltic Prussians (in what is now parts of southern Lithuania, the Kaliningrad exclave of Russia and...


In a second meaning, for someone considering themselves German but living abroad, Imperial German means any German who is a citizen of Germany, as opposed to someone living abroad (and usually without a German passport). Part of the identity of ethnic German minorities living abroad — a classic example are the Baltic Germans — was to define themselves as German, using the pre-1871 concept. However, Imperial Germans visiting the Baltic provinces in the late 19th Century, for instance, resented the claims of the Baltic Germans to be German — for the Germans from Germany, to be German meant to be a citizen of the Reich, while for the Baltic Germans, it meant cultural-historical belonging. Today, when referring to the present, Germans from Germany usually only employ the term Imperial German within such a discourse (Germans working in Latvia talking to a Baltic German visiting there might, for example, refer to themselves as Imperial Germans). The Baltic Germans (Baltendeutsche, Balten, and Deutschbalten respectively), were the ethnically German inhabitants of that area on the Eastern shore of the Baltic Sea which forms today the countries of Latvia. ...


The opposite of Imperial Germans is, then, depending on context and historical period, Volksdeutsche, Auslandsdeutsche, or a more specific term denoting the area of settlement, such as Baltic Germans or Russian Germans (Wolgadeutsche). Volksdeutsche (ethnic Germans) is a historical term which arose in the early 20th century to apply for Germans living outside of the German Empire. ... Auslandsdeutsche (Germans abroad; adj. ... The Baltic Germans (Baltendeutsche, Balten, and Deutschbalten respectively), were the ethnically German inhabitants of that area on the Eastern shore of the Baltic Sea which forms today the countries of Latvia. ... The Volga Germans are ethnic Germans living near the Volga River and the Black Sea, maintaining German culture, German language, German traditions and religions: Evangelical Lutherans or Roman Catholic. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Imperial Germans - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (393 words)
Imperial Germans is the common translation of the German word Reichsdeutsche (adj.
However, Imperial Germans visiting the Baltic provinces in the late 19th Century, for instance, resented the claims of the Baltic Germans to be German — for the Germans from Germany, to be German meant to be a citizen of the Reich, while for the Baltic Germans, it meant cultural-historical belonging.
The opposite of Imperial Germans is, then, depending on context and historical period, Volksdeutsche, Auslandsdeutsche, or a more specific term denoting the area of settlement, such as Baltic Germans or Russian Germans (Wolgadeutsche).
Germans - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1534 words)
The Germans (German: die Deutschen), or the German people, are a nation in the meaning an ethnos (in German: Volk), defined more by a sense of sharing a common German culture and having a German mother tongue, than by citizenship or by being subjects to any particular country.
The result was German colonization as far East as in Romania and Slavonic colonization as far west as to present-day Lübeck, at the Baltic Sea, Hamburg (connected to the North Sea) and along the rivers Elbe–Saale further South.
In addition, a significant number of German citizens (close to 5%), although traditionally considered ethnic Germans, are in fact foreign-born and thus often retain the cultural identities and languages or their native countries, a fact that clearly sets them apart from those born and raised in Germany, in the eyes of the latter.
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