In the accounts of life in Austria-Hungary at the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth century, one reads about a world dominated by nations and nationalism. Both contemporaries and historians describe a nationality conflict in which politics, economy, literature, music, journalism, sports, and science were all placed in the “service of the nation.” According to Helmut Rumpler, it was a time when even the once-powerful state and its bureaucracy were forced to withdraw in the face of different nationalisms. Primary sources often paint a similar picture: A German from Celje/Cilli, Fritz Zangger, claims that in his home town even “the God of Germans and of Slovenes had nothing in common.” Contemporary newspapers described incessant nationalist conflicts between Czechs and Germans, Germans and Slovenes, Slovenes and Italians, or Croats and Hungarians. Minutes of parliamentary sessions tell us about obstructionism carried out by nationalist parties, and in the War Ministry the “Disciplinary Measures to Prevent National Endeavours from Invading” [the Military] (Massregeln zur Verhütung des Eindringens nationaler Bestrebungen) grew longer every year. Therefore, it is no surprise that descriptions of a different reality in which nationalism had hardly played a role, like those of the novelist Joseph Roth, were often dismissed as figments of a nostalgic imagination or depictions of a vanishing world.