Nationalism: Divisive or Beneficial?
Generally, it should be pointed out that nationalism as a kind of political order is mostly associated with moral significance. However, one is to keep in mind that it is not so easy to disclose the meaning of the term. For instance, many scientists speak about numerous contradictions nationalism includes. Thus, first of all, it is not so easy to define the characteristic features of the nation. In other words, some historians can not say whether the nation is determined by its language, culture, or ethnicity. Others are sure that a nation can be defined by numerous issues. Some scientists say that nationalism is considered to be a force for good; others do not support the opinion; on the contrary, they say that such patriotic principles are mostly related to great evil.
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In my opinion, nationalism is a force for evil. For instance, there is a need to point out that in most cases nationalism is associated with the legacy of the war. Thus, one is to keep in mind the events, which took place in Rwanda, Chechnya, or even former Yugoslavia. Moreover, it is also necessary to keep in mind that such negative phenomena as genocide, ethnic cleansing, etc. seem to be derived from nationalism. They say that the synonym of the kind of political order seems to be barbarism.
Some historians and politicians do not take into consideration the fact that nationalism is mostly associated with a force for evil; however, they say that certain patriotic principles can coexist. In other words, there is a variable, which equalizes the good and evil of nationalism. Thereby, genocide, rape, etc. are recognized to be morally wrong; but it is not because of nationalism; on the contrary, the above-mentioned unpleasant consequences are mostly related to moral features of certain events.
So, as far as nationalism has numerous contradictions, it is necessary to state that the kind of political order can not be regarded as an all-pervasive political force. The assumption that one culture, one polity seems to be ambiguous. For instance, when speaking about Switzerland, Canada, and Belgium, one is to keep in mind that nationalism as the kind of political order will die. In other words, one can conclude that nationalism has no future and seems to be less stable in multilingual countries. Bilingualism and multilingualism are not compatible with nationalism.
Of course, there is a need to be objective. Thus, I suppose that “The major political benefit is that nationalism has preserved pluralism in the world, and thereby preserved political liberalism” (O’ Leary 197). However, numerous negative consequences are also to be considered, to see to the odds in favor of nationalism opposite views.
National entity status determines the acts of nationalists. In other words, nationalists do not consider or analyze the motives, but they act to defend the rights of the nation. In my opinion, this means that nationalism is not based on logic. It is only based on the so-called moral approach; so, it seems to be inappropriate for modern society. The absence of logic is mostly associated with outdated political issues.
Our days, logic, and rationalism determine the success of a certain policy. It is not enough to be gung-ho conservative or a stickler for some policies. For instance, as far as bilingualism and multilingualism are recognized to be the sings of developed societies, nationalism seems to be the echo of the 19th century and must be annihilated. The kind of political order hampers modernization.
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Originally, the main purpose of nationalism was to advocate the rights of the nation. However, in our days the struggle for justice was transformed into a force for evil. Today, nationalism is mostly used in a negative sense. For instance, people speak about nationalism, when they discuss the issues of the war. Generally, World War I, World War II took place based on nationalism. Moreover, nobody will deny the fact that nationalism can cause imperialism. In other words, the political ideology imperialism (a policy of extending a country’s power using various means, including military actions, i.e. arm) is closely related to nationalism issues.
The analysis of Tolkien’s fiction as well as some other sources, “including essays and personal letters, suggests that he felt that separate nations should co-exist without imposing on one another and that the nation taking over others would lose its own identity, whether gradually or suddenly” (Johnston p. 3). In other words, the policy of nationalism is at variance with its principles.
Taking into account the above-mentioned information, it becomes obvious that nationalism leads to powerlessness and a sense of loss.
Brilmayer, Lea. The Moral Significance of Nationalism, 1995. Web.
Johnston, Amanda. J.R.R. Tolkien, War, and Nationalism. 2010. Web.
Miscevic, Nenad. Nationalism, 2010. Web.
O’ Leary, Brendan. On the Nature of Nationalism: An Appraisal of Ernest Gellner’s Writings on Nationalism, 1997. Web.