A Brief Analysis on Nationalism


  • Yanlin Zhu




Benedict Anderson; Nationalism; Political Theory; Comparative Analysis.


What does it mean by a “nation” or a “nation-state” when scholars address them, and in what ways are they imagined? How is national solidarity imaginarily achieved? By default, linguists and political theorists assumed the nation to be a social construct, an entity imagined by a commune of people sharing some kinship or common ideological beliefs. For these people, they don't need to be bound to some existing connections such as vernacular connotations; especially from Benedict Anderson’s perspective, today’s modern world relies upon an unfailing realm wherein members feel a “horizontal” comradeship with each other. In all, this paper furthers Anderson’s argument to show the powerful, upper class might use the concept of nation to safeguard their dominating social status, and thereby become an unshakable, solidified existence in the social world. To prove the aforementioned claim, it first recaps Anderson’s core argument, “the nation does not exist, it is imagined”. Most people may consider that they reside in the same nation because of their biological inheritance, as they and people alike look very similar since, they were born. As a result, a primitive perception of a nation is born out of a community united by blood. Yet with the advancement of human civilization, the different nations loosened connections with each other through immigration and active interpenetration: warfare, cross-regional marketing, and chaos and rebellions. “No more arresting emblems of the modern culture of nationalism exist than cenotaphs and tombs of Unknown Soldiers. The public ceremonial reverence accorded these monuments precisely because they are either deliberately empty or no one knows who lies inside them, has no true precedents in earlier times.” (Benedict Anderson p.1) Ultimately, it shows people create noumenal evidence to show that they are in a nation that has been existing for a long time, nevertheless, the unreality of these substances may induce more existential problems.


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How to Cite

Zhu, Y. (2022). A Brief Analysis on Nationalism. BCP Education & Psychology, 7, 301–304. https://doi.org/10.54691/bcpep.v7i.2678