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Mun, Soo-Hyun
Division of General Studies
Research Interests
  • Modern Germany with an emphasis on gender
  • Military conscription
  • Border conflict
  • Population issue


근대 국가 형성과 운하 건설 : 빌헬름 제국기를 중심으로

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근대 국가 형성과 운하 건설 : 빌헬름 제국기를 중심으로
Other Titles
The modern State-Building and Construction of Canal during the Wilhelmine Empire
Mun, Soo-Hyun
Issue Date
사림, no.33, pp.389 - 414
In the first half of the nineteenth century, the canal seemed out of date, but it was revived during the Wilhelmine Empire. The Wilhelmine Empire is characterized not only by the huge network of railroads, but also by the construction of a lot of canals. The most salient of those was Mittellandkanal, which combined the Rhine and the Elbe, that is the western part of Preussen and eastern part of Preussen. By analysing the debate regarding the canal construction boom, I want to show how the construction of the canal network, which was exceptionally active in Wilhelmine Germany, was influenced by the condition of modern state-building during the Wilhelmine Empire. As a result, it turned out that the debate on how to construct a broad canal system was neither focused on public interest, nor made in a systematic or neutral way. All of the participants fought against each other simply based on their own interest. The government, which must be above all these private interest conflicts, was obsessed with the nationalistic rhetoric. In regards to economic profitability, the canal turned out to be almost ineffective. We can conclude that the construction boom of the canal was the result of an underdeveloped political system during the Wilhelmine Empire when the public sphere was not sound and each party functioned only as the lobbyist of each interest group. Therefore, it was quite natural that the canal was financial disaster.
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