By Heinz K. Meier, Regula A. Meier
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Extra resources for Switzerland
The staff of the Landesbibliothek in Bern, where we spent two summers, were most helpful in tracking down material. The Swiss cultural foundation 'Pro Helvetia' donated a good number of books and also provided some financial support. From that office, I would like to single out the services of Hanne Zweifel. Our son Peter read the entire manuscript and his critical comments were of enormous help, as was the encouragement we received from our other children Barbara, Christina and Markus. Dr. Lukas Burckhardt in Bern assisted me in the final stages by checking some citations in the Landesbibliothek.
The Federal Tribunal, the highest court, was placed in French-speaking Lausanne, while Zurich as the largest city received the only federal university, the Swiss Institute of Technology founded in 1855. Excellent education and solid professional training are of prime importance for a country that has practically no natural resources. Switzerland has one of the oldest state school systems, dating back to the early 1800 s when elementary schooling became both free and compulsory. Vocational training which had once been the privilege of the guilds, is supervised by the government and conforms to high standards.
271p. bibliog. This book was first published in 1948 by Columbia University Press, when Switzerland, in the aftermath of World War II, stood out as an island of peace and prosperity. Herold wants to dispel the myth of Switzerland as a shining example for all nations on earth, and he does it tongue in cheek, as titles of individual chapters, such as 'War for Export', referring to Swiss mercenaries that used to serve foreign monarchs, or 'Animal Oeconomicum', examining the Swiss businessman, reveal.