This article focuses on Miroslav Hroch’s book titled Social Preconditions of National Revival in Europe and it tries to build on Hroch’s model of small nation-formation mainly on a methodological level. The aim is to incorporate the “subjective” dimension in Hroch’s analysis of the “objective” factors that lead to nation-formation, by opening up the discursive level to investigation. I suggest that the comparative study of nation-formation needs to remain connected to the study of nationalism as a phenomenon, including the investigation of the discursive plane, of the political languages, and histories of concepts. In this sense, the article seeks to link Hroch’s work to Begriffsgeschichte and to present a range of interpretations on how these two could work together, on a methodological level. The answers come mainly from Reinhart Koselleck’s theorizing on the relation between social history and the history of concepts. This article also addresses compatibility problems that aim to encourage a more integrative type of analysis that would entail an in-depth and critical revisiting of Hroch’s model. At the same time, Hroch’s model proves to be flexible enough to be situated at the intersection of more types of history writing.
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