43 / 2016
Jernej Mlekuž

Aleksandrinke as the Carriers of Honour of National Community in the Karol Pečnik's Post from Egypt (1897)

The paper examines a letter by physician Karol Pečnik from Alexandria, which was published in three issues of the Goriška newspaper Soča in 1897 and focuses to a great extent on Slovenian emigrants in Egypt, the so-called aleksandrinke. Pečnik’s attitude towards migration is not a priori negative, and in contrast to other newspaper reporting on aleksandrinke in those times, moral denunciation is not his primary concern. His main focus is (nationally conscious) women who, while living in a foreign, urban environment, are in great danger of falling through the nationalist dragnet. His letter shows that wo­men who were exposed to foreign elements (at the edge of the “national body”) constituted a potential threat of national contamination and that they were an important element of national(istic) thinking.
KEY WORDS: Karol Pečnik, Egypt, aleksandrinke, female migration, nationalism

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