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Ethnonationalism : The Quest for Understanding - Walker Connor


The Quest for Understanding

Paperback Published: 5th December 1993
ISBN: 9780691025636
Number Of Pages: 248

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Walker Connor, perhaps the leading student of the origins and dynamics of ethnonationalism, has consistently stressed the importance of its political implications. In these essays, which have appeared over the course of the last three decades, he argues that Western scholars and policymakers have almost invariably underrated the influence of ethnonationalism and misinterpreted its passionate and nonrational qualities. Several of the essays have become classics: together they represent a rigorous and stimulating attempt to establish a secure methodological foundation for the study of a complicated phenomenon increasingly, if belatedly, recognized as the major cause of global political instability.

The book opens by reviewing a wide range of scholarship on ethnonationalism. Connor examines nineteenth-and early twentieth-century debate among British scholars on the viability and desirability of the multinational state, the American "nation-building" school of thought that dominated the literature on political development in the post-World War II era, and the recent explosion of literature on ethnonationalism. In the second part of the book, he shows how progress in the study of ethnonationalism has been hampered by terminological confusion, an inclination to perceive homogeneity even where heterogeneity thrives, an unwarranted tendency to seek explanation for ethnic conflict in economic differentials, and lack of historical perspective. The book closes with a consideration of the inherent limitations of rational inquiry into the realm of group-identity.

Industry Reviews

"This collection ... by one of the leading scholars of ethnonationalism is both highly instructive about the essential nature of the problem and unusually prescient in its anticipation of the ethnic and nationalist resurgence in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union."--Foreign Affairs

List of Figures and Tables
The British Intellectual Tradition ("Self-Determination: The New Phase")p. 3
American Scholarship in the Post-World War II Era ("Nation-Building or Nation-Destroying?")p. 28
More Recent Developments ("Ethnonationalism")p. 67
Terminological Chaos ("A Nation Is a Nation, Is a State, Is an Ethnic Group, Is a...")p. 89
Illusions of Homogeneity ("Myths of Hemispheric, Continental, Regional, and State Unity")p. 118
The Seductive Lure of Economic Explanations ("Eco- or Ethno-Nationalism?")p. 144
Ahistoricalness: The Case of Western Europe ("Ethnonationalism in the First World: The Present in Historical Perspective")p. 165
Man Is a [R(n)ational] Animal ("Beyond Reason: The Nature of the Ethnonational Bond")p. 195
When Is a Nation? ("From Tribe to Nation?")p. 210
Indexp. 227
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780691025636
ISBN-10: 0691025630
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 248
Published: 5th December 1993
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.88  x 1.27
Weight (kg): 0.36