Wednesday, July 16, 2008

What is a Nation?

John Laughland ponders the question.
A nation, in other words, is not a “community of values” or an impersonal social construct governed by certain laws. A nation – as the word suggests, derived as it is from the verb ‘to be born’ – is a family. A family can be a source of great love, indifference or even fratricidal conflict, just as a nation can experience cohesion, social exclusion or civil war. Nations can certainly welcome into their midst people who are not originally members of it, just as a family can expand to include in-laws. Both can and should show tolerance and friendship towards them. But at the end of the day, nations like families are bodies of people related to each other by blood.

1 comment:

Lucille said...

From the comments:

Furthermore, why are non-white ancestral lands still 99% homogeneous?

North America? South America? India? Africa? Australia?

The homogenous ones (Japan being among the most frequently cited) tend to be exceptions to the rule.