Skip to main content

View Diary: A pacifist on nationalism (67 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Your history is incomplete and Eurocentric (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The grouch, Justus, Batya the Toon, native

    China, for example, has existed as a political entity for longer than much of Europe has been civilized, much less organized as nation states.  Even in the European context, I'm pretty sure the Roman Empire qualified as a nation state.

    I agree that nationalism is an artificial -- and quite dangerous -- construct.  But it has been around, if not in its most modern development, for much longer than modern Europe.

    See the children of the earth who wake to find the table bare, See the gentry in the country riding out to take the air. ~~Gordon Lightfoot, "Don Quixote"

    by Panama Pete on Mon Dec 24, 2012 at 05:23:42 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Political entity (3+ / 0-)

      Being a political entity and nationalism are two different things.
        For instance, England and France have been around for a very long time, but no one living at the time of the kings would confuse that with nationalism.

        For example, look at the 100-years war. Who fought in it? Only the lords. The peasants didn't (although they were often robbed and killed for sport).
        Why? Because there was no nationalism. The serfs were loyal only to their local lords. They had nothing to gain from the wars. Thus the armies were measured in a few thousand and fought only a couple times a year, during one season.

        Those things changed for good after the French Revolution, when slavery and feudalism were abolished and everyone claimed a stake in the nation.
         Suddenly the French could field armies of such size that other nations couldn't match.

      ¡Cállate o despertarás la izquierda! - protest sign in Spain

      by gjohnsit on Mon Dec 24, 2012 at 06:56:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  yes it is (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      native, isabelle hayes

      I was talking about what I know best, being a European :)

      other than that, see gjohnsits answer. Basically, nations are not the only political entities possible - in fact - there are very many other forms of political expression throughout history and the world. This specific institution of nation-state and nation as a concept was developed in Europe, indeed, it has spread over the world but it is by no means an advance in "civilization", I´d say.  An advance in power generation it was, for sure.

    •  China is different in that (0+ / 0-)

      for a lot of its history it was essentially a series of competing monarchies.  "National identity" was solidified as a response to anti-colonialism and anti-Japanese sentiment.  China as a national entity didn't really happen until the 1700s.  Japan was much the same, not a state until the 1700s or so.

      "Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die," - Buddha.

      by sujigu on Mon Dec 24, 2012 at 12:18:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site