Nationalism as a political ideology has been a powerfully transformative force throughout history. It serves as a frame of mind that binds a group of people together through shared language, culture, history, and common values, leading to the concept of a nation-state.
Nationalism has played a key role in the formation of many countries, including the United States and most European nations. It has also been the cause of conflict and division, especially when it turns into ethnonationalism or ultranationalism, which emphasize the interests of one ethnic group over others leading to intra-state conflicts, civil wars, and even genocide.
Familiarizing yourselves with this ideology has twofold significance. First, understanding nationalism helps us understand many historical events that have shaped the world as we know it today.
Second, it can help us to comprehend and address contemporary social, political, and cultural issues. From Brexit to "America First," from the rise of far-right parties in Europe to escalating tensions in the South China Sea, nationalist sentiments are influencing local and international affairs.
To aid your research and give you a deeper understanding of this subject, I recommend the following resources:
"Imagined Communities" by Benedict Anderson: This book provides an insightful exploration of the concept of nationalism, arguing it is a creation of modern times, deeply connected with the rise of print capitalism.
The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Article on Nationalism: This detailed article overviews the philosophical aspects of nationalism.
BBC Bitesize, Nationalism: These short videos illustrate nationalism's playing out in different parts of the world.
Nationalism and National Identity - OpenLearn - Open University: This free online course provides a comprehensive overview of the different forms of nationalism and their implications.
Remember, these resources are not exhaustive. Feel free to explore more sources to enrich your understanding and broaden your perspective.
"Exploring Nationalism: A Multidisciplinary Approach"
Objective of the project
To analyze and understand the complex nature of Nationalism as a political ideology from multiple perspectives, including its history, cultural context, philosophical underpinnings, and contemporary manifestations.
Detailed description of the project
This project will be conducted in groups of 3 to 5 students, and it will take approximately two weeks to complete, with an estimate of over twelve hours of work per student. The project requires interdisciplinary research and collaborative discussion to explore the nuances of Nationalism, engaging with the fields of history, sociology, politics, and philosophy.
The project is divided into four main parts:
- Historical Overview
- Philosophical Foundations
- Cultural Dimensions
- Contemporary issues
- Access to a library or reliable online sources for research
- Stationery for note-taking
- Laptop or computer for creating presentations
- Online meeting tools for group discussion given the current pandemic scenario
Detailed step-by-step for carrying out the activity
Step 1: Forming Groups and Initial Discussion (2 hours) The class will be divided into groups of 3 to 5 students. The instructor will guide the groups through an initial discussion about Nationalism and its implications.
Step 2: Research (6 hours) Each group will conduct in-depth research on the four main parts of the project. Divide these sections among group members according to their preferences and strengths.
Step 3: Group Discussion and Collation of Information (4 hours) Each member will present their findings to the group. The group will then collectively analyze the information, draw connections among the various aspects explored, and collate the findings.
Step 4: Presentation Preparation (4 hours) Based on the collective findings, the group will prepare a detailed presentation, covering all four aspects of Nationalism and reflecting on their interconnectedness.
Step 5: Final Presentation and Report Writing (6 hours) Each group will present their findings to the class. After the presentation, each group will need to prepare a comprehensive report documenting their findings and reflections.
The project deliverables will include a group presentation on the multi-dimensional exploration of Nationalism and a detailed report covering the following topics:
- Introduction: Briefly define Nationalism and its importance in the current global scenario.
- Development: Describe the research, discussion, and findings about the historical, philosophical, cultural, and contemporary aspects of Nationalism. Explain your methodology and summarize your results.
- Conclusions: Reflect upon your findings and the process. Elaborate on the learnings obtained and any conclusions drawn about Nationalism.
- Bibliography: List all your sources of information.
The report should be approximately 2000-3000 words long. It should align with the presentation and should further elaborate on the concepts and learnings explained during the presentation. This document will demonstrate thorough research, a deep understanding of Nationalism as a political ideology, effective teamwork, and competent report writing skills.