Explaining Monoculturalism: Beyond Gellner's Theory of Nationalism
Critical Review, 1996, 10, 2, 251-270
TAMBINI, Damian Angelo, Explaining Monoculturalism: Beyond Gellner's Theory of Nationalism, Critical Review, 1996, 10, 2, 251-270 - https://hdl.handle.net/1814/17109
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For Ernest Gellner, nationalism occurs in the modern period because industrial societies, unlike agrarian ones, need homogeneous languages and cultures in order to work efficiently. Thus, states and intellectuals mobilize campaigns of assimilation through public education and the culture industries. Gellner's theory however, fails to explain all forms of nationalism, is overly materialist, and at times relies on dubious functionalist explanations. A more satisfactory theory would take into account the cultural content of nationalism-not only myths, but political culture-as well as phenomena of identity and collective action.
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