Nationalism

Nationalism

Nationalism

Nationalism

Excerpt

The core of nationalism is group-consciousness, the love of the community, great or small, to which we belong; but for the larger portion of the prehistoric and historic life of mankind such love of our unit has been an instinctive emotion, not a doctrine. While patriotism is as old as human association and has gradually widened its sphere from the clan and the tribe to the city and the state, nationalism as an operative principle and an articulate creed only made its appearance among the more complicated intellectual processes of the modern world. The august conception of the unity of Christendom under the joint sway of Emperor and Pope was almost as unfavourable to national differentiation as had been the universalism of the Roman Empire; and though the latter centuries of the Middle Ages witnessed the steady growth of national consciousness and the highsouled patriotism of Joan of Arc, it was not until the political and religious system of mediæval Europe went down before the combined assaults of the Renaissance and the Reformation that the sovereign state emerged as the dominant type of political organisation. In the fulness of time the doctrine of nationalism issued from the volcanic fires of the French Revolution, carrying its virile message of emancipation and defiance to the uttermost parts of the earth, and filling the nineteenth century with the insistent clamour of its demands.

Nationalism is the self-consciousness of a nation, and its flowing current is fed by many streams. The nation . . .

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