The Dynamics of Cultural Nationalism: The Gaelic Revival and the Creation of the Irish Nation State

The Dynamics of Cultural Nationalism: The Gaelic Revival and the Creation of the Irish Nation State

The Dynamics of Cultural Nationalism: The Gaelic Revival and the Creation of the Irish Nation State

The Dynamics of Cultural Nationalism: The Gaelic Revival and the Creation of the Irish Nation State

Synopsis

On the nature and role of cultural nationalism as a separate movement in the creation of modern nations. Takes the modern Irish movements as a model. Annotation(c) 2003 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Excerpt

Although the literature on nationalism is now vast, it still contains some surprising gaps. One of the most striking is the absence of a systematic analysis of the part played by historical scholars and artists in nation-building. I have tried to fill this gap in this study of cultural nationalism.

Focused though it is on the modern Irish period, this book then is not intended as a survey of Irish nationalism. So many brilliant studies have been published in recent years as to make that task redundant in any case. My aim, rather, has been to make a general contribution to the understanding of nationalist movements by examining why schools of nationalist historians and artists arise, the kinds of social movements they inspire, and their contribution to the making of modern political communities.

Whether or not I have succeeded in my objective must be for the reader to judge. All I know is that, during the years spent on this project, I have had considerable help from many people. The present book began as a doctoral dissertation at the London School of Economics and Political Science, and I owe a special debt to Dr Anthony D. Smith, my supervisor. He, his wife, Diana, and his mother, Harriet, were overwhelming in their kindness and hospitality to me and my wife during our time in London. Without his encouragement and critical guidance I doubt if I would ever have cut a path through the nationalist jungle.

I would also like to thank my examiners, Dr Peter Alter and Dr John Stone, whose constructive criticisms assisted my revisions for this book. I am also grateful to Dr Alan O’Day for his careful reading of several chapters. In addition, I count myself fortunate, when studying at the LSE, to have been able to attend the always stimulating Interdepartmental Postgraduate Seminar on Nationalism organized by Professor Percy Cohen, Mr James Mayall and Dr Anthony D. Smith. Responsibility for . . .

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