Nation, Nationalism in Controversial Debates and Thought: A Review of Origin of Nation and Nationalism

Ata Anbarani


In sociological and anthropological view there is a challenge between the paradigms about nature, power and origin of nations and nationalism. The aim of this article is to discuss and describe the source of nations and nationalism. Here there are three main categories of explanation: the Primordialist or the perennialists, the modernist, and the ethno-symbolic. Primordialist and perennialists’ emphasis is on nation and nationalism as a natural and biological phenomenon. Modernists think to nation and nationalism as new events. They determine nations as a ‘constructed’ or ‘invented’ phenomenon, but ethno symbolism criticizes modernism view of origin of nation and nationalism. Ethno-symbolism seeks to provide some conceptual tools as an alternative approach and research programme for the study of nations and nationalism.


Nation; Nationalism; Primordialist; Perennialists; Modernist; Ethno-symbolism; Common History; Myth; Symbols


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