Post-National Patriotism and the Feasibility of Post-National Community in United Germany

Post-National Patriotism and the Feasibility of Post-National Community in United Germany

Post-National Patriotism and the Feasibility of Post-National Community in United Germany

Post-National Patriotism and the Feasibility of Post-National Community in United Germany

Synopsis

With a focus on united Germany and the post-1989 German unification process, Phillips outlines the necessity and feasibility of a concept of post-national patriotism. Specifying the example of racist violence, he argues that a substantial measure of Germany's social consensus can only be extended to heterogeneous Europe if there is a greater recognition of heterogeneous Germany, not only by Germans but by non-Germans as well. He shows that the consensual structures of German-based transnational businesses may play a leading role in the development of a sense of post-national patriotism. He argues that state solutions to issues of immigration and integration are not in themselves adequate and that these may be supplemented by private-sector institutions taking on responsibility.

Excerpt

I will outline my concept of post-national patriotism in the next chapter. But before I do so, in this chapter we will try to understand how transnational concentration of industry and growth in value of trade in the international marketplace (the subject of the companion volume to this book), are bringing about the increasing differentiation of society at the local level. These economic factors can both extend and undermine conceptions of the nation-state.

We can illuminate our understanding of these developments with an image drawn from mathematical calculus. In calculus, integration calculates an area under a curve and between two given ordinates. The area under the curve changes continuously if one of the ordinates is adjusted, and thus integration is an infinitesimally continuous process. Differentiation is used to ascertain the rate of rise or fall of a curve.

Within society too, successful integration depends on an initial mutual recognition of difference, as the parameters of our action are challenged by the constantly changing ordinate of global interdependence. We can see that a greater differentiated understanding of how the bounds of our society are changing with regard to individuals can help us formulate strategic objectives of integration. Individuals' identity is coordinated in relation to how others see them, and how they see others, and changes constantly as the bounds of society change.

Despite the increasing regulation of interstate relationships, therefore, as the axes of states are encompassed by new points of view imported or seen to be imported from different social and cultural coordinate systems, integrationary measures within states are increasingly circumscribed by trends towards increasing individualization and deregulation of communities. In this respect, Germany actually remains much more regulated than other Western states. But a quantification in absolute terms is not so important as to see that changes are perceived by those affected by them in relative terms.

With these difficulties in mind, I have titled this chapter "The Homogeneity/

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