|Part of a series on|
National liberalism (German: Nationalliberalismus; Danish: Nationalliberalisme; Finnish: Kansallisliberalismi; Swedish: Nationalliberalism; Romanian: Național-liberalism) is a variant of liberalism, combining liberal policies and issues with elements of nationalism, and/or a term used to describe a series of European political parties that have been active, especially in the 19th century, in several national contexts from Central Europe to the Nordic countries and Southeast Europe.
National liberalism, whose goals where the pursuit of individual/economic freedom and national sovereignty,[verification needed] refers primarily to an ideology and a movement of the 19th century, but national-liberal parties exist also today.
József Antall, a historian and Christian democrat who served as the first post-communist Prime Minister of Hungary, described national liberalism as "part and parcel of the emergence of the nation state" in 19th-century Europe.
According to Oskar Mulej, "in terms of both ideologies and political party traditions it may be argued that in the Central European lands a distinct type of liberalism, peculiar to this region evolved through the nineteenth century" and, citing Maciej Janowski, "the word 'national' acted as more or less synonymous with 'liberal'" ("'national' alone was sufficient to arouse suspicions of liberal associations"). Also according to Mulej, in Southeast Europe "'national liberals' also played visible if not central roles, but with rather different, region-specific characteristics, which to a considerable extent distinguished them from their Central European counterparts".
In his book Up From Conservatism, Michael Lind defines "national liberalism" in a way that The Progressive describes as matching historian Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.'s use of the expression "Vital Center". Lind himself defines "national liberalism" as uniting "moderate social conservatism with moderate economic liberalism."
Gordon Smith, a leading scholar of comparative European politics, understands national liberalism as a political concept that lost popularity when the success of nationalist movements in creating nation states rendered it no longer necessary to specify that a liberal ideal, party or politician was "national."
The roots of national liberalism are to be found in the 19th century, when conservative liberalism and/or classical liberalism was the ideology of the political classes in most European countries and in particular those of Central Europe, then governed by hereditary monarchies.
At their origin, national liberals, although pro-business, were not necessarily advocates of free trade and economic liberalism per se, and sometimes favoured cooperation between the government and the national industry, moderate levels of protectionism, the establishment of preferential custom unions, subsidies for infant industry or companies considered of national strategic importance, and various forms of industrial planning.
National liberalism was popular in a number of countries including Germany, Austria, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, and Romania during the 19th century.[verification needed] In Germany, Austria and Romania, national liberals and/or "National Liberal" parties were long in government. More specifically, in German-speaking countries, national liberals were also in favour of a more authoritarian or conservative political regime because of the multi-ethnic character or heterogeneous nature of countries like the Austrian Empire (later officially renamed Austria-Hungary) or the newly created Germany, under Chancellor Otto von Bismarck.
In 19th-century Germany believers in national liberalism differed from liberal nationalists in that they believed in a more authoritarian presence in Europe and a strong German Empire. Liberal nationalists, such as Max Weber, were looking towards a democratic Germany in cooperation with the other European powers.
At the time of the German Empire national liberalism was represented by the National Liberal Party (NLP), the largest in the Reichstag for several years. National Liberals supported Bismarck, who served as Chancellor from 1871 (unification of Germany) to 1890, until the late 1870s, when the Chancellor reversed his early free trade policies, became a proponent of protectionism, opposed increasing parliamentary powers and ultimately pandered for the support of the German Conservative Party (largely representing the wealthy landowning elite Junkers of Prussia). Additionally, the NLP (which had obtained around 30% in the first three federal elections, including 30.1% in the 1871 federal election) suffered huge losses in the 1878 federal election and especially the 1881 federal election (when it was reduced to 14.6%). Later, the party experienced a steady decline in its share of vote, contextually with the rise of the Social Democratic Party and the Centre Party at the turn of the century.
During the Weimar Republic the NLP was succeeded by the German People's Party (DVP), whose main leader was Gustav Stresemann, Chancellor (1923) and Minister of Foreign Affairs (1923–29). The DVP has been classified as a "national-liberal" party by several observers.
The current Free Democratic Party (FDP), which was the joint successor of the DVP and the social-liberal German Democratic Party, originally featured conservative and partly nationalist efforts, which were particularly strong in some state associations until the 1950s, and still includes a national-liberal faction, which holds a consistently Eurosceptic position, differently from the rest of the party. Some right-wing elements, including Sven Tritschler (former leader of the Stresemann Club), have more recently joined the Alternative for Germany (AfD), which has in turn been characterised by some observers as "national-liberal".
In Austria-Hungary the Constitutional Party was the main representative of national liberalism. In Austria, national liberalism has remained the basis of one of the three Lager, or ideological camps, in the country, dating back to the Revolutions of 1848 in the Austrian Empire. During the interwar period, the national-liberal camp was gathered into the Greater German People's Party. By 1938, with the Anschluss of Austria into Nazi Germany, the national-liberal camp had been swallowed whole by Austrian National Socialism and all other parties were eventually absorbed into Nazi totalitarianism. Both Socialists and Christian Socials were persecuted under the Nazi regime, and the national-liberal camp was scarred after the war due to guilt by association with National Socialism.
In 1949 the Federation of Independents (VdU) was founded as a national-liberal alternative to the main Austrian parties. It incorporated an array of political movements, including free-market liberals, populists, former Nazis and German nationalists, all of whom had been unable to join either of the two main parties. The VdU evolved into the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ) in 1955–56. When Jörg Haider was chosen as new FPÖ leader in 1986, the party started an ideological turn towards right-wing populism, which resulted in the split of most liberals, who formed the Liberal Forum (LiF), which took over the FPÖ's membership in the Liberal International and would later eventually merge into NEOS. Haider himself would split from the party and form the Alliance for the Future of Austria in 2005.
In Denmark, from the 1840s, the core concept of "national liberalism" was that the nation and the state should have the same extent. National liberals supported the union the Kingdom of Denmark and the Duchy of Schleswig under a common constitutional framework. On the economy, the state should not interfere with trade and the national-liberal economic vision was transposed in the 1857 Law on Freedom of Business, which abolished the last remnants of the feudal monopolies which had previously formed the framework for the craft of the cities. Danish national liberal supported Scandinavism and, thus, Scandinavian unity.
In Sweden, in the 1860s, liberals described themselves as "national liberals", nationalliberaler, and constituted a coalition of monarchists and liberal reformists in support of parliamentary reforms.[verification needed] Also Swedish national liberals supported Scandinavism.
In the Grand Duchy of Finland, an autonomous part of the Russian Empire, where as many as 80% of the population was Protestant and Finnish-speaking, somewhat under 20% Protestant Swedish speakers (Sweden ruled Finland until 1809) and a small number Russian Orthodox, the term "national liberal" was used by the elite Swedish-speakers of the Svecoman movement who advocated liberal ideals, but wanted to keep Swedish as the dominant language, an idea opposed by Finnish-speaking nationalists of the Fennoman movement.[verification needed] The Svecoman movement gave birth to the "Swedish Party", which was later renamed Swedish People's Party in Finland, which has since moved to mainstream liberalism and social liberalism and is often a party of government in the country.
In the 1990s a Russian movement self-describing as "national liberalism" claimed to be redefining "liberal" principles as understood in the Western tradition to produce a "national liberalism" better suited to Russian culture, being practically a variety of Russian nationalism.
Many political parties have included "national liberal" in their names or ideology. A list is available at National Liberal Party.
- Luke Mastin (2008). "Liberalism - By Branch / Doctrine - The Basics of Philosophy". Philosophybasics.com. Retrieved 2017-07-20.
- Pera, Marcello (2011). Why We Should Call Ourselves Christians: The Religious Roots of Free Societies. Encounter Books. ISBN 9781594035654. Retrieved 20 July 2017.
- Lothar Gall und Dieter Langewiesche - Liberalismus und Region, München 1995, pp. 4–10.
- Nilsson, Göran B. (2005). The Founder: André Oscar Wallenberg (1816-1886), Swedish Banker, Politician & Journalist. Almqvist & Wiksell International. p. 80. ISBN 9789122021025. Retrieved 20 July 2017.
- Özsel, Doğancan (2011). Reflections on Conservatism. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. p. 255. ISBN 1443833959. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
- Oskar Mulej. "NATIONAL LIBERALS AND THEIR PROGENY APPROACHING THE PECULIAR DEVELOPMENTS IN CENTRAL EUROPEAN LIBERAL PARTY TRADITIONS, 1867–1918" (PDF). rcin.org.pl. Acta Poloniae Historica 111, 2015.
- Maciej Janowski, ‘ Wavering Friendship : liberal and national ideas in nineteenth century East-Central Europe’, Ab Imperio , 3–4 (2000), 69–90, 80.
- Oskar Mulej (2014-05-15). "National Liberal Heirs of the Old Austria: “Deviations” in Liberal Party Traditions, 1867-1918 | IWM". iwm.at. Institute for Human Sciences. Retrieved 2017-07-20.
- Harvey, Kaye (October 1966). "Wobbling around the center". The Progressive. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
- Lind, Michael (2013). Up from Conservatism. Simon and Schuster. p. 32. ISBN 1476761159. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
- "Between Left and Right: The Ambivalence of European Liberalism," pp. 16–28, in Liberal Parties in Western Europe, Emil J. Kirchner, ed., Cambridge University Press, 1988, ISBN 0521323940.
- Kurunmaki, Jussi. “On the Difficulty of Being a National Liberal in Nineteenth-Century Finland.” Contributions to the History of Concepts, vol. 8, no. 2, 2013, pp. 83–95., http://www.jstor.org/stable/43610946.
- Farmer, Alan (2017). My Revision Notes: Edexcel A-level History: Germany, 1871-1990: united, divided and reunited. Hodder Education. ISBN 9781471876653. Retrieved 20 July 2017.
- Flynn, John F. (1988). "At the Threshold of Dissolution: The National Liberals and Bismarck 1877/1878". The Historical Journal. JSTOR. Retrieved 20 July 2017.
- "Germany - The Tariff Agreement of 1879". Countrystudies.us. Retrieved 2017-07-20.
- "Germany - The Tariff Agreement of 1879". Countrystudies.us. Retrieved 2017-07-20.
- Dittberner, Jürgen (2008), Sozialer Liberalismus: Ein Plädoyer, Logos, pp. 55, 58
- Neugebauer, Wolfgang (ed.) (2000), Handbuch der Preussischen Geschichte, 3, de Gruyter, p. 221
- Van De Grift, Liesbeth (2012), Securing the Communist State: The Reconstruction of Coercive Institutions in the Soviet Zone of Germany and Romania, 1944-48, Lexington Books, p. 41
- Gert-Joachim Glaeßner: Politik in Deutschland, VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften 2006, p. 457
- Kirchner, Emil Joseph (1988). Liberal Parties in Western Europe. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge. p. 214. ISBN 978-0-521-32394-9.
- Taggart, Paul; Szczerbiak, Aleks. "The Party Politics of Euroscepticism in EU Member and Candidate States" (PDF). SEI Working Paper. 51. Sussex European Institute: 11.
- "Wir | Stresemann Club - Rechtsliberale in der FDP". Rechtsliberale.wordpress.com. 2012-04-20. Retrieved 2017-07-20.
- [dead link]
- Simon Franzmann (2015). "The Failed Struggle for Office Instead of Votes". In Gabriele D'Ottavio; Thomas Saalfeld. Germany After the 2013 Elections: Breaking the Mould of Post-Unification Politics?. Ashgate. pp. 166–167. ISBN 978-1-4724-4439-4.
- "AfD ǀ Die populistische Versuchung — der Freitag" (in German). Freitag.de. 2009-11-20. Retrieved 2017-07-20.
- "Politologe analysiert Landtagswahl: "Den Sachsen geht es zu gut"". tagesschau.de. 2014-09-01. Retrieved 2017-07-20.
- Riedlsperger, Max (1998). "The Freedom Party of Austria: From Protest to Radical Right Populism". In Betz, Hans-Georg; Immerfall, Stefan. The new politics of the Right: neo-Populist parties and movements in established democracies. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 27. ISBN 978-0-312-21338-1.
- Jelavich, Barbara (1987). Modern Austria: Empire and Republic, 1815-1986. Cambridge University Press. p. 168.
- Riedlsperger, Max (1998). "The Freedom Party of Austria: From Protest to Radical Right Populism". In Betz, Hans-Georg; Immerfall, Stefan. The new politics of the Right: neo-Populist parties and movements in established democracies. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 28. ISBN 978-0-312-21338-1.
- Meret, Susi (2010). The Danish People’s Party, the Italian Northern League and the Austrian Freedom Party in a Comparative Perspective: Party Ideology and Electoral Support (PhD thesis). SPIRIT PhD Series. 25. University of Aalborg. p. 186. ISSN 1903-7783.
- Krzyżanowski, Michał; Wodak, Ruth (2009). The politics of exclusion: debating migration in Austria. Transaction. p. 36. ISBN 978-1-4128-0836-1.
- Blamires, Cypriam (2006). World fascism: a historical encyclopedia. 1. ABC-CLIO. p. 70. ISBN 978-1-57607-940-9.
- Prakke, L.; Kortmann, C. A. J. M.; van den Brandhof, J. C. E. (2004). Constitutional law of 15 EU member states. Kluwer. p. 42. ISBN 978-90-13-01255-2.
- Piringer, Kurt (1982). Die Geschichte der Freiheitlichen. Orac. p. 326.
- Schambeck, Herbert (1986). Österreichs Parlamentarismus: Werden und System. Duncker & Humblot. ISBN 978-3-428-06098-6.
- "Nationalliberalisme". Danmarkshistorien.dk. Aarhus Universitet. Retrieved 2017-07-20.
- Mary Hilson (2006). "Denmark, Norway, and Sweden". In Timothy Baycroft; Mark Hewitson. What Is a Nation?: Europe 1789-1914. OUP Oxford. p. 203. ISBN 978-0-19-929575-3.
- Evans, Mark (2001). The Edinburgh Companion to Contemporary Liberalism. PsychologyPress. p. 273. ISBN 1579583393.
- Nagle, John (1999). Democracy and Democratization: Post-Communist Europe in Comparative Perspective. SAGE. p. 193. ISBN 0761956794. Retrieved 17 May 2017.
- Verlag Beck, Germany from Napoléon to Bismarck, 1800-1866, Princeton University Press
- Lucien Calvié, Unité nationale et liberté politique chez quelques libéraux allemands au début des années 30 and Naissance et évolution du libéralisme allemand, in Françoise Knopper and Gilbert Merlio (edited by), Notices politiques et littéraires sur l'Allemagne, Presses Universitaires du Mirail, Paris, 1835
- Alfred Wahl, Les forces politiques en Allemagne, Armand Colin