Aerican Empire

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Aerican Empire
Micronation
Flag of Aerica
Flag
Coat of arms of Aerica
Coat of arms
Anthem: "Home Is Where I Hang My Towel"[1][2]
Location of Aerica
Status Current
Capital Montreal
Official languages English, Aerican
Organizational structure Constitutional monarchy)
• Emperor
Eric Lis[3][4]
Establishment
• Declared
May 8, 1987
Area claimed
• Total
9,000,000 km2 (3,500,000 sq mi)
Membership 289 (2017)[5]
Purported currency Mu and Solari[6][7]
ISO 3166 code [[ISO 3166-2:|]]

The Aerican Empire (conventionally referred to in short form as Aerica) is a micronation founded in May 1987,[8] which has no sovereign territory of its own and has never been recognized by any other sovereign state as existing. The name is cultured from the term "American Empire".[9] In 2000 The New York Times described its website as "one of the more imaginative" micronation sites.[10]

Its members claim sovereignty over a vast disconnected territory, including a square kilometer of land in Australia, a house-sized area in Montreal, Quebec, Canada (containing the "Embassy to Everything Else"), several other areas of the Earth, a colony on Mars, the northern hemisphere of Pluto, and an imaginary planet.[11]

Their flag is similar to the flag of Canada, with a large yellow smiley face instead of the red maple leaf in the white square (although the red rectangles on the sides have different side length ratios).

History[edit]

The Aerican Empire was founded on 8 May 1987 by Canadian Eric Lis and a core group of friends. For the first ten years the Empire was almost wholly fictional, claiming sovereignty over a vast galaxy of planets and engaging in "wars" against other micronations.[12] After the advent of the Internet, through which the founders discovered other micronations similar to their own, the Empire slowly abandoned most fictional elements and worked towards becoming a political entity rather than a hobby. In 1997, the Empire created a website.[13]

In 2007, Aerica first issued "novelty passports." The first issued passport was exhibited in the Palais de Tokyo 2007 Micronational art exhibition.[14]

The Aerican Empire first issued coinage in November 2009, and a second coin was minted to celebrate Aerica's 25th anniversary in 2012.[15] Banknotes were issued for the first time in 2017.[16]

Aerica issued stamps for the first time in 2015.[17]

Status[edit]

The Empire's mission statement is: "The Empire exists to facilitate the evolution of a society wherein the Empire itself is no longer necessary."[12][18][19] It claims to be organized as a parliamentary democracy, with various elected bodies and offices, under the oversight of an Emperor (currently the founder, Eric Lis).[20] Lis, who founded the Aerican Empire as a child, obtained his M.D., C.M. from McGill University and has been published in the Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience[21] and Weird Tales magazine.[22][23]

The group's activities are permeated by a great deal of humour and a love of science fiction and fantasy, with recurrent references to Star Wars, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and similar works. Annually, the Empire holds story-writing contests, role-playing and wargaming days, and such events as the Dog-Biscuit Appreciation Day Scavenger Hunt.[12] It also developed a "religion" called Silinism, the worship of the Great Penguin; originally intended as a joke, but which the group claims to have thirty practitioners worldwide.[10] It has holidays and "niftydays" (such as 2 January Procrastinator's Day, 27 February *Oops* Day, 19 March What the Heck is That Day, and 26 October Topin Wagglegammon, The Niftiest Day of the Year).[24]

Offline activities[edit]

While Internet-based activities in the Empire are more well-documented and facilitate interaction between members in different countries, a major focus has always been local physical events. Members gather for weekly meetings in Montreal, Springvale, New York and other centers, and a twentieth anniversary convention was held in July 2007.[25]

Delegations from the Aerican Empire have attended the Polinations academic conference in London in 2012 [26][27] and the MicroCon micronations convention in Atlanta in 2017[28].

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ceceri, K: Micronations: Invent Your Own Country and Culture with 25 Projects, ISBN 1619302225
  2. ^ Aerican Empire: National Anthem
  3. ^ Infoman: Infoman, 11 October 2012, "Émission du 11 Octobre"
  4. ^ Atlanta Magazine: Atlanta Magazine, 30 June 2017, "You probably didn’t know, but leaders from 26 micronations just gathered in Atlanta".
  5. ^ Aerican Empire: Culling of the Inactive 2017
  6. ^ Aerican Empire: Money
  7. ^ Extraradi: Extraradi, 22 September 2009. Barcelona: COMRadio
  8. ^ Ryan, J: Micronations: The Lonely Planet Guide to Self-Proclaimed Nations, ISBN 1-74104-730-7
  9. ^ Aerican Empire: FAQ at the group's website, section "What kind of name is Aerica?". Retrieved July 2009.
  10. ^ a b The New York Times: "Utopian Rulers, and Spoofs, Stake Out Territory Online", 25 May 2000.
  11. ^ The Wanderer: The Wanderer, November 2012, "Micro-nations of our Nation". Archived at [1] and [2]
  12. ^ a b c The Montreal Mirror: The Montreal Mirror Archived November 24, 2006, at the Wayback Machine., 17 August 2006, "The little empire that could"
  13. ^ O'Driscoll, F: Ils ne siègent pas à l'ONU, ISBN 2-87867-251-8
  14. ^ Aerican Mailing List Archive, [3], December 2, 2006
  15. ^ Aerican Empire: Economics
  16. ^ Aerican Empire: Economics
  17. ^ Aerican Empire Post, [4], May 8, 2015
  18. ^ The Boston Phoenix: The Boston Phoenix Archived May 6, 2006, at the Wayback Machine., October 2000, "States of Mind".
  19. ^ CBC Daybreak: Daybreak, 13 July 2006, "The Aerican Empire: Interview With Eric Lis". Montreal: CBC Radio
  20. ^ Le Soleil, Quebec City: Le Soleil, 18 January 2001, "Vive Eric 1er, empereur virtuel!"
  21. ^ Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience: [5], 2007, "Neuroimaging and genetics of borderline personality disorder: a review".
  22. ^ Weird Tales Magazine: Weird Tales, 2008, "My True Lovecraft Gave To Me".
  23. ^ Weird Tales Magazine: Weird Tales, 2011, "A Contract Without Loopholes".
  24. ^ Context Magazine: Context Magazine Archived October 17, 2006, at the Wayback Machine., April–May 2001, "Altered States".
  25. ^ Aerican Empire: 20th Anniversary Convention
  26. ^ Delafontaine, L., Les Micronations, Montreuil-sur-Brêche, Diaphane, 14 September 2013, pages 160, ISBN 978-2-919077-19-9
  27. ^ Radio France: 15 July 2012, archived at [6]
  28. ^ Atlanta Magazine: Atlanta Magazine, 30 June 2017, "You probably didn’t know, but leaders from 26 micronations just gathered in Atlanta".

External links[edit]