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By U. Ozkirimli

Following on at once from the author's Theories of Nationalism which gives a finished review of the most methods to its examine, Umut Ozkirimli's new booklet addresses the key components of dialogue and key matters within the examine of nationalism within the modern global. Broad-ranging and certainly overseas in scope, it combines transparent exposition of current positions and views with the improvement of the author's personal evaluate and synthesis.

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Extra resources for Contemporary Debates on Nationalism: A Critical Engagement

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Otherwise, the nation-state will remain a The Theory of Nationalism 61 Purity, modesty and chastity are common themes in national narratives of gender, nation and sexuality ... When a nation is constructed in opposition to the Other there emerges a pro- found distinction not only between us and tbem but also more pointedly, between our women and theirs. Our women are always 'pure' and 'moral' while their women are 'deviant' and 'immoral'. (2000: 10) Moreover, the idealization of motherhood entails the exclusion of all nonreproductively-oriented sexualities from the discourse of the nation (Parker et al.

What is less often noticed, she argues, is how this allegedly natural division of labour helps resolve the temporal anomaly within nationalism, that between a nostalgia for the past and the impatient, progressive sloughing off the past: Women are represented as the atavistic and authentic body of national tradition (inert, backward-looking and natural), embodying nationalism's conservative principle of continuity. Men, by contrast, represent the progressive agent of national modernity (forward-thrusting, potent and historic), embodying nationalism's progressive, or revolutionary, principle of discontinuity.

Following Benner, we might distinguish between two strategies employed by the political theorists of the last decade. The first, what Benner calls 'the quarantine strategy', 'is mainly prudential and directed against those who value nationhood too much' . Here a healthy dose of nationalism is encouraged as a means of guarding against the real danger, virulent nationalism. The second strategy, on the other hand, consists of 'the claim that national attachments have a positive value, and seeks to give those atk'1chments a central and constructive role in political life'.

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