Spencer, Philip, and Howard Wollman. Nationalism: A Critical Introduction. London: Sage Publications Ltd, 2002.

Summary: The literature focuses on nationalism in relation to national identity by exploring and analyzing political conflicts, common elements that constitute identity, the roots and theories of nationalism, social factors and more. In addition, the focus is also on the development of nationalism over the centuries and what constitutes a sense of identity depending on specific circumstances or time period.

Relevance: The literature has an insightful and useful chapter on the relationship between culture and identity, which explores certain values applicable to individuals and how they help to constitute a national identity. Similarly, I am exploring the relationship between literature, culture and identity.

Smith, Anthony D. National Identity. Nevada: Nevada Press, 1991.

Summary: The Literature focuses on the nature of national identity in a similar way to “Nationalism – A Critical Introduction” but with a greater focus on social factors, which are often more applicable to a contemporary context. It discusses factors such as language, myths, history, class identity and more.

Relevance: The literature focuses on myths (even in relation to Switzerland such as the “Rütlischwur” and Wilhelm Tell), which can be nicely linked to “Schellenursli” and children’s literature in general. Furthermore, there is a focus on nature, which is one of the central subjects of Switzerland that constitutes identity.


Schmid, Carol L. The Politics of Language: Conflict, Identity, and Cultural Pluralism in Comparative Perspective. New York: Oxford University Press, 2001. Ebook edition. Accessed September 20, 2015. http://site.ebrary.com/lib/davidson/reader.action?docID=10084839.

Summary: The EBook focuses on the issue of having multiple languages in one country by the examination of the four languages in Switzerland by sometimes comparing it to Canada (English and French). The author argues how Switzerland was ‘brought up’ with “plurilinguism” and how the different languages therefore constitute the identity of Switzerland in contrast to Canada.

Relevance: Given that I explore Räto-Romanisch as a language and the role it has in the Swiss Identity, the argument presented demonstrates the issue by emphasizing the importance of language and culture and how they work in harmony to shape the nationalistic perception of Switzerland.

Article in an online journal

Leybold-Johnson, Isobel. “Rätoromanisch steht vor einer stillen Zukunft.” Swissinfo. Accessed September 20, 2015. http://www.swissinfo.ch/ger/raetoromanisch-steht-vor-einer-stillen-zukunft/625326.

Zusammenfassung: Der Artikel adressiert die abnehmende Zahl der Schweizer, welche Räto-Romanisch sprechen und die Faktoren die dazu dienen. Der Autor fokussiert sich auf soziale Faktoren und potenzielle Lösungen für das Problem.

Relevanz: Dadurch dass ich mich auf Kindergeschichten konzentriere, welche ursprünglich im Räto-Romanisch geschrieben wurden und somit ein traditionelles Schweizer Konzept verkörpern, spricht der Artikel für die Wichtigkeit der Sprache und somit auch für die Kultur.

Lüdi, Georges; and Werlen, Iwar. “Eidgenössische Volkszählung 2000; Sprachenlandschaft in der Schweiz.” Schweizerische Eidgenossenschaft. Accessed September 20, 2015. https://biblio.parlament.ch/e-docs/139176.pdf.

Zusammenfassung: Dieses offizielle Dokument verkörpert die Sprachenlandschaft der Schweiz durch viele Statistiken, welche die Sprachenkultur in Kontext setzen.

Relevanz: Dieses Dokument ist sehr wertvoll wenn ich argumentieren will, wie gefährdet das Räto-Romanisch ist aber dient auch zum grösseren Verständnis der Schweizer Kultur im Bezug zu den Sprachen generell. Schliesslich bezieht sich das Projekt auch auf die Identität der Schweiz allgemein.

Moffitt, Gisela. “Beyond ‘Struwwelpeter’: Using German Picture Books for Cultural Exploration.” Wiley on behalf of the American Association of Teachers of German. Die Unterrichtspraxis / Teaching German, Vol. 36, No. 1 (Spring, 2003), pp. 15-27. Accessed September 20, 2015. http://www.jstor.org/stable/3531680.

Summary: The journal article illustrates the way in which children’s literature can be used as a medium to teach second languages. However, it also focuses on the cultural and literal value of the literature to emphasize the multidimensional connections that it embodies.

Relevance: The journal article addresses the way in which literature can also speak for a specific culture, which is one of my main arguments by focusing on “Schellenursli”. The arguments and ideas presented help shape my broader understanding of the way in which the literature functions.

Freudenburg, Rachel. “Illustrating Childhood – ‘Hansel und Gretel’.” Wayne State University Press. Marvels & Tales, Vol. 12, No. 2 (1998), pp. 263-318. Accessed September 20, 2015. http://www.jstor.org/stable/41388498.

Summary: The journal article focuses on the different interpretations of childhood literature ranging from the romantic and nostalgic notion of growing up to the more serious and intense interpretations of childhood (abuse, harshness of life, etc.) through the medium of illustration. The author explores the different facets and interpretations that shape, in this case, “Hänsel und Gretel”.

Relevance: Given that “Schellenursli” is also an illustrated children’s book that goes beyond the child reader, this journal article has shed a new light on the wide range of interpretations that the Swiss children books could bring. It underlines how differently the literature may be read depending on the age/culture/life situation the individual is in.

Knoepflmacher, U.C. „Children’s texts and the grown-up reader“.Cambridge Companion to Children’s Literature. Accessed November 22, 2015. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/CCOL9780521868198.010

Summary: The chapter argues that children’s stories are applicable to the adult-reader as well as all the other generations because they embody a variety of themes. The author illustrates the relationship between the stories and the adult-reader through the demonstration of the different ways in which literature can be interpreted.

Relevance: Given that I am trying to argue that Schellenursli is not only a children’s story but also embodies the culture of the Engadin, which is applicable to the adult-reader, the chapter emphasizes the relationship between the reader and the art form. It also helps illustrate the variety of interpretations.