By Glenda Sluga
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Extra info for Nation, Psychology, and International Politics, 1870-1919 (Palgrave Macmillan Series in Transnational History)
It eventually accumulated more than 100 executives, research collaborators and assistants, all engaged in the pursuit of scientiﬁc facts about the territories and peoples whose fate, it was anticipated, would dominate peace discussions. 71 Given its size, it was hardly an homogeneous group. Instead, the ideological tensions that shaped its practices mirrored those of intellectual trends at large. 73 Sometimes their responsibilities were scholarly, more frequently they were administrative. They did not ﬁgure as prominent voices, merely as expedient attachments where there was a dearth of knowledge.
144 In June that same year, Lippmann wrote to Seymour asking for locally based ‘nationality statistics’ that he could use to assemble a block diagram of the region. 145 Seymour’s response was to recommend the Gerichtsbezirke ‘indicated on the racial map of the Jugo-Slav area which I presented last week’. 147 At this point, Seymour moved rather awkwardly between the criteria of language and race. ’149 The same confused grappling with the shifting categorical orientations of national identity shadowed British efforts.
66 He communicated the content of these discussions with some conﬁdence to the American Ambassador, who passed the information on to the Department of State and to Colonel House, Wilson’s personal advisor. 68 Within a year these two strands had come together. House took charge of organising the Inquiry and made Lippmann one of its key administrators. Its director, though, was Sidney Mezes, a philosopher of religion and more signiﬁcantly, it has been claimed, House’s brother-inlaw. In September 1917, Lippmann wrote to House about the idea for a bureau tasked to provide facts for use in post-war peacemaking, making knowledge ‘available and easily transferable’.