Constructions of national narratives in established and emerging democracies based on student survey responses | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 7, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1751-1917
  • E-ISSN: 1751-1925


This study examines national narratives constructed by the authors based on survey responses of students (n=3273) from nine Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries and the United States. Students were asked to name events and heroes important to their nations' pasts. The authors used a framework based on the work of James Wertsch to construct and interpret the national narratives. Findings indicate that there was a high level of agreement between the students of each country about their national stories. In addition to the high level of agreement about what events and people belonged in the story of the nations, the narratives described by the students all fall within the mainstream national narratives of each country. Further analysis reveals the uniqueness of each of the CEE nations' post-communist paths. The ways in which all students understand the relationships between the distant and more recent pasts give insight into the ways in which the narratives of these nations are being reshaped.


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