Nations and nationalism - What is a nation?

10 important questions on Nations and nationalism - What is a nation?

What are different ways to define a nation?

Cultural entities (objective): groups with the same language, religion, shared past.

Politically: group of people who regard themselves as a natural political community. Classically expressed through the quest for sovereign statehood.

Psychologically: a group of people distinguished by a shared loyalty or affection in the form of patriotism.

What is a nation in subjective terms?

A group that perceives theirselves as a distinctive political community => Nation as political community = Rousseau

How does a nation distinguish itself from an ethnic group?

An ethnic group possesses a communal identity and a sense of cultural pride, but, unlike a nation, it lacks collective political aspirations.

What is the difference between a nation and an ethnic group?

An ethnic group has a communal identity and cultural pride, but does not have a political aspiration

What are the objective and subjective features of a nation?

Objective : nations are cultural entities: groups of people who speak the same language, have the same religion, are bound by a shared past and so on -> it is impossible to define a nation using objective factors alone

Subjective : the nation is a psycho - political construct ("a group of people distinguished by a shared loyalty or affection in the form of patriotism")

What is a ethnic group?

A group of people who share a common cultural and historical identity, typically linked to belief in common descent

What does volksgeist and culturalism mean?

Volksgeist : Literally, the spirit of the people ; the organic identity of a people reflected in their culture and, particularly, their language

Culturalism : the belief that human beings are culturally defined creatures, culture being the universal basis for personal and social identity

What is cultural nationalism?

Is a form of nationalism that places primary emphasis on the regeneration of the nation as a distinctive civilization, rather that as a discrete political community

What is the general will/volonté générale from Rousseau in nations as political communities?

According to him, there is a general will to obey rules from your nation

What is a political nation?

A nation in which citizenship has greater significance that ethnic identity -> examples : France, UK, UZ

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