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Document Details :
Title: Nationalism and Nations
Author(s): VAN DE PUTTE, André
Journal: Ethical Perspectives
Volume: 1 Issue: 3 Date: September 1994
o one will deny that the history of the last two centuries is incomprehensible without some insight into the meaning of nationalism. In the modern world, references to ‘nation’ and ‘national feelings’ are political forces of the first order that have played a much greater role than have references to other ideas that had raised expectations among political thinkers. Nevertheless, it is not a simple matter to define nation and nationalism; the terms have a weak analytical and explanatory power. We lack a definition that would allow us to determine unequivocally and objectively whether or not we have to do with a nation. Many objective criteria for identification (linguistic, ethnic, religious, political, cultural, geographical, etc.) are proffered individually or in combination. None, however, has been consistently satisfactory.