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Nationalism and Ethnic Politics


Module description

This module considers the rise of nations and ethnic groups, past and present. It introduces competing schools of thought on nationalism and ethnic conflict. It then proceeds to ask about multi-ethnic states, ethnic and civic nationalism, nationalism in everyday life, and nationalism and populism.

Indicative module syllabus

  • Definitions and Theoretical Overview
  • The Origin of Ethnic Groups
  • Theories of Nationalism
  • State Nationalism, Nation-Building and Commemoration
  • Multi-Ethnic Nations and Multi-National States
  • National Identity: Ethnic or Civic?
  • Everyday Nationalism: Nationalism from Below
  • Nationalism and Populism

Learning objectives

By the end of this module, you will:

  • understand the strengths and weaknesses of the dominant theories of nationalism and ethno-religious conflict
  • be able to apply these theories to concrete historical and contemporary cases
  • have detailed substantive knowledge of national, ethnic and religious conflicts in several settings
  • have gained cognitive skills, including critical evaluation and analytical investigation
  • be able to synthesise a variety of materials to explain and support your own arguments concerning the key problems of nationalism.