Mentor: Dr. Andrew Denning

This research investigates how the Belgian underground press attempted to unite the country’s two major national identities, Flemings and Walloons, during World War I. Belgian nationalists were able to momentarily unite the Belgian people to resist their German occupiers by publishing pro-Belgian newspapers and articles. They relied on three pillars of identity — Catholic heritage, loyalty to the Belgian Crown, and anti-German sentiments. While this instance of Belgian unity dissipated to an extent after WWI, the efforts of the clandestine press still serve as an important framework on the development of national identity today.


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