Underestimated countries

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Fabilius, Nov 5, 2006.

  1. Fabilius AH.com´s most active lurker

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    Well, what countries do you think are underrepresented, or underused when making fictional TL´s? What countries would like to see featured more often in ATL´s?

    Obviously due to the fact nearly all of us are westerners, living in westernised areas of the world, and most of us are from somewhere on the anglosphere, it is but natural that Britain and USA are the most often featured.
    TL´s devoted specially too USA or Britain are plenty. A few here are devoted to China, (all from Hendryk if I´m not mistaken), very many are connected to Germany, especially in the 20th century, France gets it´s time in the spotlight. Roman empire, Byzantine empire, Spain and Japan are very popular as well so on.

    The most underused countries in my opinion are:
    China and India. (Two giants, which most often are probably scoffed due to the fact it´s impractical to gain info on them).

    However here is my list of countries I´d like to see more of:

    Denmark (It´s used relatively often though compared to it´s size, but I like to see more;) )
    While we´re at it, Iceland:D
    Thailand. (Really, I´d like to see a TL focusing on Thailand, or/and other countries in south east asia)
    Hungary, Poland.
    Finland.
    Persia. (Modern Iran has a lot of attention, but pre 20th century doesn´t get so much attention).

    I´m sure you can think of more.





    P.S. I´m working nightshifts again, and due to how much coffee I drink, I usually wander the internet for an hour or so before I go to sleep. In case you were looking at the time I´m posting in:rolleyes:
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2006
  2. Flocculencio Fabian Socialist Donor

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    Pet Peeve!

    China actually gets pretty good representation IMO. In various TLs it might not be too detailed but there's always a Chinese Empire around somewhere.

    India, on the other hand almost always gets ignored, shaded in on the map as part of someone's empire or as various minor kingdoms.

    Japan, conversely, gets overused because everyone looks at post-Meiji Japan and projects backward.
     
  3. Fabilius AH.com´s most active lurker

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    True, it´s just so darn difficult to ignore China. You just can´t in the long run if it´s a TL on a global scale.

    I think I phrased myself a bit wrongly when I posted this.

    The real question is: What countries would you like to see more of in TL´s and why?
     
  4. Darkest Banned

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    South America, definitely. South America always gets ignored because its so out of the way. If the continent had been united under a surviving Incan Empire, or if Bolivar had created his USSA, or if some Catholic theocracy were established throughout Latin America... quite interesting. The Latinos are never championed as a race that can do something worthwhile. If someone had instilled them with even a slightly more industrial character, though, I'm sure they would matter much more in the modern world.
     
  5. Hapsburg Robrotrenominator

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    I think a "successful and peaceful Zaire" type of thing would be interesting, especially one in which Mobutu avoids kleptocracy and actually does something to increase the country's economy, like mining in Katanga and South Kasai. The whole central Africa region is often underestimated, but it has massive potential in an ATL for greatness, due to to it's abundant natural resources and large population.
     
  6. arctic warrior Scandinavian die-hard

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    As you wrote about Denmark, it is often used especially the Vikings, Valdemars Baltic Empire and the Kalmar Union. That is the bigger picture.
    When going into detail it usually boils down to the "Scandinavian die-hards" as Red/Oddball/whats his present name did put it.
    Greenland is one I like, but its hard to come by except as a sideshow of Medieval affairs or as part of Norway/Denmark.
     
  7. Johnnyreb Member

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    I favour Belgium. It's often crossed my mind to do a timeline for the Greater Belgian Empire, spanning half the world, which even today accounts for the popularity of Tintin in the Solomon Islands.

    Then there's the giant City-State of Plovdiv, the Terror of the Lower Danube. My great-great uncle was a tram driver there. He smashed up so many motor-cars his colleagues called him the Red Baron.

    But so many other posters are far more talented at writing timelines than I.
     
  8. NapoleonXIV Banned

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    And in South Am it's Paraquay and Uruquay. Paraquay had a little interest because it was a hermit kingdom with the same dictator for 30 years who took in all the Nazis. Uruquay...well...see, I can't even think anything about it.

    It used to be Belize in Central Am but now they have resorts.
     
  9. Gladi Serial killer

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    Bright day
    More Poland...?:rolleyes:
     
  10. Jared Voldemort Jnr

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    Uruguay and Belize have both had significant if small roles in at least one TL (DoD). Paraguay, now... what can be done with Paraguay? Anyone familiar enough with Paraguayan history to explain how they reunited South America in the early twentieth century?
     
  11. Kabraloth Cubito ergo sum.

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    Anything south of Mexico.
    Especially Brazil.
     
  12. Syphon Aussie Lord Protector Donor

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    What about the giant powers of europe.

    Monaco, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Andorra and Leichenstein. :D :D :D :D
     
  13. Gladi Serial killer

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    Three of them aren't even really independant countries.
     
  14. Tyr air in space

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    I agree the difficulty in getting information is the big factor in places being under represented.
    Its not that I dislike Africa or Latin America. Its just there's pretty much F.A. written about them floating about aside from a few small periods in history. (well easily available stuff written about them anyway- there are doubtless many academic books)
     
  15. Susano Banned

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    Monaco, Andorra and Liechtenstein I think you mean? Well, it is true, France, France/Spain and Switzerland have much of their souvereignity rights, but nontheless these trhee states are interbationalyl regogniced as independant and souvereign.
     
  16. htgriffin Member

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    I must note with pleasure that the Ottomans do not get sand kicked in thier face _quite_ as much as they once did....

    HTG
     
  17. Tocomocho My other car is a steam tank.

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    I found this some months ago: http://www.heliograph.com/trmgs/trmgs4/siam2.shtml

    The Central-American republics are completely forgotten in my opinion.
     
  18. Thande Memo to self, don't create any more politicians Donor

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    I agree at the erroneous backward-projection of Japanese history, but I think Fab's quote (sorry to pick you out, Fab, a lot of people do this) illustrates a similar misconception about India:
    People think of India as being one country. Backward-projecting from now when it's a (mostly) peaceful united republic. But that is a consequence of how an 'Indian national identity' arose in reaction to British rule. Prior to the era of European colonisation, India was rarely united by a single power for very long (the Guptas and the Mughals are the only examples that spring to mind).

    Hence, your other pet peeve that India is nearly always some generic united empire in your average TL, but doesn't project its power into e.g. the East Indies. The reason being that I bet the average timeline writer vaguely thinks that India has always been a united empire in OTL.

    Of course, China has gone through its fractured periods as well, but I think it's far more reasonable to think of the 'default setting' of China as a united empire than of India.
     
  19. Flocculencio Fabian Socialist Donor

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    Yes definitely. And as you point out, if India is united, people just leave it at that without contemplating the likely power projection capabilities of a united polity of that size. It's going to be as big as China while being much more outward-looking due to many of it's component cultures having definite traditions of maritime trade. So you get stuff like a monolithic India and China just sitting there while Japan does something crazy like conquering the East Indies. OTLs disunited India managed to culturally colonise everything from Burma to Laos to Bali- a united India might well be able to bring these areas even more directly under it's aegis. Sons of Alexander is the only TL I've seen which actually makes use of this fact. Because I wrote it :D
     
  20. Max Sinister Retired Myriad Club Member Gone Fishin'

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    All of Africa, esp. south of Sahara, except for Egypt and South Africa.

    Most of Latin America. Canada too, except when it's conquered by the USA.

    Native Americans, except for Inca and esp. Aztecs.

    Persia indeed. Although I wonder if there might be a connection to Shia Islam: Since it tells that there's a hidden Imam who'll return one day, this has lead to the situation that Shiites either practice quietism (no wonder you don't hear about them), or make bloody uprisings (the revolution of 1980 could be counted as that too).

    Finland. Except in some Finwank AH written by a Finnish cyberpunk fan :D

    Portugal and SE Europe.

    SE Asia, it's even worse than India. I have to admit I tried writing a bit about them in my Chaos TL, but there's so few actual written history I could find... dynasties rise and fall, countries make war, but how and why?

    Australia.

    OTOH, A-H is overrepresented, at least I sometimes have the feeling it is.