As a Western Construct, Can Nationalism Satisfy non-Western Movements?
Nationalism cannot be seen as either 'good' 'bad', as the notion of 'good' 'bad' characteristics depends upon the position of the observer. Nationalism is a Western construct which has been variously justified and used for different purposes wherever it is found. It will be argued that nationalism, while possessing neither absolute 'good' nor 'bad' qualities, can never be completely progressive. Even in its anti-colonialist form it derives from, and perpetuates, Western ideology and institutions.
Nationalism is an ostensibly universal construct which emerged from Europe in the 17th century and established the nation state as the dominant order of territorial division. A nation state is easily defined, however the nationalism which drives it is intangible. Benedict Anderson finds it in terms of an 'imagined community,' where whole peoples are lead to believe that they have common goals and values, using mediums like print capitalism and education.
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