• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Nationalism. This essay will focus on why nationalism has been a remarkable influence across the world. Basically it will examine 2 different approaches to nationalism

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

The world we are living today is often described as a global village. Current affairs across the world and our everyday lives cannot be discussed without mentioning globalisation as its impact is virtually everywhere. National boundaries seem to lose the significance in this interconnected world. As it is linked tighter and tighter due to the increased movements of money, people, products and technology, it seems that the world is becoming integrated as a single unit. However globalisation has boosted or reassured a force which is rather against it - nationalism. Although it has been explained in a variety of ways from different standpoints, it is agreed that nations and nationalism remain among the most powerful phenomena in the contemporary world. This essay will focus on why nationalism has been a remarkable influence across the world. Basically it will examine 2 different approaches to nationalism. Particularly the focus will be placed on the latter approach in relation to current issues. First approach is called essentialism. According to this explanation, "nations were seen as the natural and primordial divisions of humanity, and nationalism was thought to be ubiquitous and universal."1 In other words, nationalism is inborn phenomenon rather than created or manipulated one. People innately have a desire for belonging as could be seen from lifestyle based on tribal units in pre-modern societies. ...read more.

Middle

The role of tradition in shaping nationalism is crucial in a sense that the central features that drive nationalism are common memories and amnesia. By sharing common memories and amnesia which represent the key events in the history of a particular political community, people feel secured with a feeling of membership. This feeling of security naturally motivates people to pursue common future in a belief that this will ensure their lives to continue without facing any unexpected threats. This explains how national project can be done successfully by giving new meaning and significance to its people. For example in the case of South Korea which had achieved significant economic development during 1970s, one of the key factors that motivated its people was 'being better' than Japan. Sharing painful historical experience made the society more cohesive to reach its goal. However Gellner also argues that "nationalism is primarily a political principle, which holds that the political and the national unit should be congruent."5 What is meant here is that nationalism would be prosperous when the power of governance does not exist within its national unit or threatened by external forces. Thus, the desire for sovereignty and self-determination are considered to be a necessary condition for nationalism. However it is not everything. ...read more.

Conclusion

Having said that nationalism appears when the governance unit and the nation are not congruent, globalisation definitely has something to do with increased nationalism at minimum. In this way, in this global era where the competitions as well as dependence among countries is taking place, nationalism is more likely to be used either in a desirable way or destructive way by national leaders. As long as a nation remains as a fundamental unit in dealing with global affairs like what it is now, the force of nationalism would rather be promoted than vanishing. To conclude, given that nationalism has changing face depending on by whom and how it is activated, there cannot be a single explanation for it. Different explanations stem from different standpoints in economic, political and cultural arenas. Fundamentally it is crucial to understand nationalism as a mixture of two attributes: the political aspect which derives from the belief of congruence of the political and national unit and the cultural aspect which derives from people's desire for belonging to the community. One way or another, either nationalism is a modern or primordial phenomenon, it has been existing in people's consciousness (or unconsciousness). Despite the massive wave of globalisation, it is said that "as long as any global order is based on a balance of competing states, so long will the principle of nationality provide the only widely acceptable legitimation and focus of popular mobilization. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Political Theories section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Political Theories essays

  1. What effects did nationalism have on world history during the nineteenth century

    This was due to the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the heir to the Austrian throne on June 28 1914, in Sarajevo. Gavrilo Princip, the assassinator was a member of the Young Bosnia, a group whose aims include the unification of South Slavs and independence from the Austria-Hungary Empire.

  2. Discuss arguments for and against national self determination.

    breakup of Yugoslavia, even though some of those units had very diverse populations.2 Furthermore national self-determination challenges the principle of territorial integrity of states because theoretically it should be the will of the people that makes a state legitimate. This implies people should be free in choosing their own state and its territorial boundaries.

  1. "Because nationalism rests on no more than an emotive appeal to 'tribal' loyalties, in ...

    However, it was inevitable that this situation was incompatible with the resulting break-up in the mid 90's, which unfortunately involved two wars and heavy loss of life. It was apparent that there was one dominant figure in the form of Serbia.

  2. In this critical review I will be looking at the topic of Europeanisation and ...

    James recognises the work of Borzel2 who uses the bottom up model and evaluates that member states will attempt to upload their domestic preferences into the EU policy process in order to reduce the future adaptional cost of having to download final policy outcomes.

  1. A Study of Nationalism and its relevance in Muslim States.

    Some whites, for example, may see themselves as superior to the blacks, or vice-versa, leading to polarization of the races and a divided society. The spiritual bond among non-Muslims is a grouping of people based on their 'religious belief' which is not a comprehensive belief covering every aspect of life.

  2. Why, for Rousseau, is it impossible for the General Will to 'err'? Is he ...

    because the majority will usually be right and know what is best for everyone. Therefore those who had a different opinion were simply mistaken about the general will and since they actually want the general will, they will get what is best for them and be free (Rousseau 2006, 1762, pp.

  1. To what extent does the "relative deprivation theory" provide a convincing explanation of the ...

    For e.g. if there is only a small percentage of people who feel deprived compared to a large proportion who don't then their attempts at violence and even a revolution would be insignificant to the destiny of a nation. So in a sense it could be argued that the Revolution

  2. Power. A gets B to do something that he or she would not ...

    Without a legitimate claim on the state for example the colonialisation of Africa by the Europeans was responded with violent reactions from within such as the Ashanti battles against British invaders, 1800s; Maji Maji uprising in East Africa, 1905, with nations demanding or In addition, consider the case of Egypt

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work