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The English and the NormansEthnic Hostility, Assimilation, and Identity 1066-c.1220$
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Hugh M. Thomas

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199251230

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199251230.001.0001

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The Interaction of English and Normans: Methodological Considerations

The Interaction of English and Normans: Methodological Considerations

(p.95) Chapter 8 The Interaction of English and Normans: Methodological Considerations
The English and the Normans


Oxford University Press

Assimilation and the construction and maintenance of ethnic identities are social processes, and one must not lose sight of the fact that individual humans are the driving force behind them. Individual people, by developing new relationships across ethnic lines over the course of generations, cumulatively create assimilation. By exchanging beliefs, practices, and ideas between different groups, they bring about cultural assimilation. The collective impact of their personal decisions causes the loss, maintenance, or triumph of a particular ethnic identity. This chapter explores important issues and problems of methodology, terminology, evidence, and definition concerning the personal interaction between English and Normans. Because the interaction occurred over several generations, the focus is on the precise role of descent in ethnicity in this society.

Keywords:   personal interaction, English, Normans, cultural assimilation, ethnic identity, descent, ethnicity, Normandy, England

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