What Does National Identity Mean To You?

Posted by Julia Rappaport on November 30, 2013

What does national identity mean to you?

In this short video, historian Omer Bartov explores how nationalism can be a source for violence as he traces the history of the Eastern European region of Eastern Galicia from the 1860s to post-World War II. Use this video in your classroom, during a study of genocide or world history, to address topics including how transitions in policies and governments can lead to the creation of various religious and national identities, and the conflicts that can arise among the various groups.

Bartov describes national identity as a way for people to declare “who you are and what you belong to” to other people. Watch the video then comment below. Do you agree with that definition? How would you define your national identity?

Connection activity: Identity Charts, a graphic tool that helps students consider the many factors that shape who we are as individuals and as communities.

This video is part of Facing History’s ongoing digital revision of our Facing History and Ourselves: Holocaust and Human Behavior resource.

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Topics: Holocaust and Human Behavior, Media Skills, Critical Thinking

At Facing History and Ourselves, we value conversation—in classrooms, in our professional development for educators, and online. When you comment on Facing Today, you're engaging with our worldwide community of learners, so please take care that your contributions are constructive, civil, and advance the conversation.


Welcome to Facing Today, a Facing History blog. Facing History and Ourselves combats racism and antisemitism by using history to teach tolerance in classrooms around the globe.

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