By César Rina Simón. Granada: Comares, 2020.
This volume focuses on one of the key aspects of any nationalization process: the construction of a time and a space that serve as landscape for the development of the nation, its heroes and their achievements, and the evolution of the national character through the centuries. These space/time narratives were created in the 19th century in parallel with the consolidation of the nation-state, and with the progressive professionalization of historians and geographers, who were in charge of telling the past of the nation, producing its maps and tracing its borders.
Imaginar Iberia [Imagining Iberia] focuses on the shared Iberian past and on its conceptualization of a unified civilization, as well as on the response that Spanish and Portuguese nationalism offered to this idea. It also analyses the tracing of Iberian borders, which clashed against well installed practices among inhabitants of both sides of the Raya. The study of such processes and debates shows that nation-states were imposed and constructed in opposition to other possible organizational models, even though the new professionals in the fields of time and space presented them as natural and perennial, or as the inevitable result of a teleological evolution.