In Michael Ignatieff set out on a journey to the former Yugoslavia, the Ukraine, Germany, Quebec, Kurdistan and Northern Ireland in order to explore the many faces of modern nationalism at its worst. Modern nationalism is a language of blood: a call to arms that can end in the horror of ethnic cleansing. But it is also a language of belonging: a call to come home. He is an outstanding literary and cultural commentator, and also a powerful novelist, shortlisted for the Booker Prize in for Scar Tissue.
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Until the end of the Cold War, the politics of national identity was confined to isolated incidents of ethnics strife and civil war in distant countries.
Now, with the collapse of Communist regimes across Europe and the loosening pf the Cold War'd clamp on East-West relations, a surge of nationalism has swept the world stage. In Blood and Belonging , Ignatieff makes a thorough examination of why blood ties--inplaces as diverse as Yugoslavia, Kurdistan, Northern Ireland, Quebec, Germany, and the former Soviet republics--may be the definitive factor in international relation today.
He asks how ethnic pride turned into ethnic cleansing, whether modern citizens can lay the ghosts of a warring past, why--and whether--a people need a state of their own, and why armed struggle might be justified. Blood and Belonging is a profound and searching look at one of the most complex issues of our time. Read more Read less. Kindle Cloud Reader Read instantly in your browser. Customers who viewed this item also viewed. Page 1 of 1 Start over Page 1 of 1.
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The model takes into account factors including the age of a rating, whether the ratings are from verified purchasers, and factors that establish reviewer trustworthiness. Top Reviews Most recent Top Reviews. There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. First published in , Michael Ignatieff's work focuses on nationalism in the post-Cold War world and identifies a crucial trend that is still encompassing every continent: where new nation-states are being forged and born, nationalism is the driving force, the backbone of this trend.
It is far from being outdated or irrelevant in any way, and although nationalism brings identity and belonging, Ignatieff argues, it also is a harbinger of bloodshed. To demonstrate, he has taken a personal journey throughout the world and homed in on six separate nations in which nationalism is an issue, perhaps a rampant one.
Each of these six case studies is a detailed chapter, a portrait of nationalism in practice. To use Ignatieff's own definition: "As a political doctrine, nationalism is the belief that the world's peoples are divided into nations, and that each of these nations has the right of self-determination, either as self-governing units within existing nation states or as nation states of their own" p.
Culturally, nationalism provides men and women "with their primary form of belonging" Ibid. Morally, it can serve to be an "ethic of heroic sacrifice, justifying the use of violence in the defense of one's nation against enemies, internal or external" Ibid.
In his Introduction, Ignatieff identifies two types of nationalism: 1 Civic nationalism, in which the predominant belief is that all those within a nation who subscribe to the nation's political creed should be its citizens; and 2 Ethnic nationalism, in contrast, holds to the idea that belonging and attachment to a nation is inherited, not chosen; "It is the national community which defines the individual, not the individuals who define the national community" p. As the book is from Ignatieff's personal perspective, it becomes all the more interesting; part-memoir, part-journalism.
His journey in examining and chronicling instances of nationalism in practice begins in the former Yugoslavia, where Croat and Serb nationalism is the backbone behind the creation of two new Balkan states, and a host of highly-destructive and de-stabilizing warfare, committed in the name of preservation and righteousness of Serbia and Croatia. From there he moves on to a newly-reunified Germany, and shows the reactions of a reunified East and West, two peoples that share a common blood and identity, yet were separated for nearly fifty years as two separate countries.
In that time, separate growth of identity, outlook and nationalism entrenched itself on both sides Germany is confronted with either turning toward a civic nationalist future, or returning to its ethnic nationalist past while trying to contain a virulent nationalism known to many as Neo-Nazism.
A similar scenario can be found in the Ukraine, Ignatieff's third destination, where for the majority of the 20th Century, its people lived under Soviet rule. What happens when autonomy comes, and there remain traces of the old order ethnic Russian citizens and the new nation ethnic Ukrainians?
In the fourth case study, Ignatieff leaves Europe and comes to Canada, where he examines the ongoing issue of separatism in the predominantly French province of Quebec. This example is more outstanding and noteworthy because it is different: Quebec is already part of a vast, highly industrialized nation and practices a great deal of autonomy within the Canadian framework.
Why do the Quebecois, obsessed with cultural and linguistic self-determination and distinction, still press for outright autonomy from Canada, even though they face grave prospects, not to mention an existing Aboriginal national voice from within? For the reviewer, a Canadian, this case is all the more relevant because it is close to home. Ignatieff turns to Kurdistan, an illegitimate nation-state where its ethnic group, the Kurds, fight constantly with neighbors and even themselves to create their own nation; what do they want, and what kind of nationalism is driving this desire?
Ending off in Northern Ireland, a land infamous among newsgroups for pipe bombs and terrorists and constantly-rivaling nationalism Republican and Loyalist , Ignatieff looks at these long-standing and fighting nationalists, Protestant Loyalists who want to remain British versus the Irish Republican Army IRA , the most violent terrorist group in Western Europe today.
Ignatieff ends off with these words: "What's wrong with the world is not nationalism itself What's wrong is the kind of a nation, the kind of home that nationalists want to create and the means they use to seek their ends" p. A revealing and rewarding book for everyone, it remains as relevant in this global village as it was almost ten years ago when first written.
Once again, Michael Ignatieff has hit gold, and has created a masterpiece in the process. While this book was written in these issues are still relevant in more than an abstract sense. President Putin just left the G meeting early and some suspect it was because of tension over Ukraine. These are Hobbesian environments says Ignatieff. Security is a driving factor. See all reviews from the United States. Top international reviews.
Verified Purchase. I didn't like the book. The author is in love with himself Russian monarchist. This is the taste this book left for me. Thank you for your feedback. Sorry, we failed to record your vote.
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Blood and Belonging: Journeys into the New Nationalism
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Blood And Belonging
Until the end of the Cold War, the politics of national identity was confined to isolated incidents of ethnics strife and civil war in distant countries. Now, with the collapse of Communist regimes across Europe and the loosening pf the Cold War'd clamp on East-West relations, a surge of nationalism has swept the world stage. In Blood and Belonging , Ignatieff makes a thorough examination of why blood ties--inplaces as diverse as Yugoslavia, Kurdistan, Northern Ireland, Quebec, Germany, and the former Soviet republics--may be the definitive factor in international relation today. He asks how ethnic pride turned into ethnic cleansing, whether modern citizens can lay the ghosts of a warring past, why--and whether--a people need a state of their own, and why armed struggle might be justified. Blood and Belonging is a profound and searching look at one of the most complex issues of our time. This is an immensely impressive meditation on nationalism in the post-Cold War era.
This is an immensely impressive meditation on nationalism in the post-Cold War era. Ignatieff, a journalist and author of both fiction and nonfiction works, demonstrates a sublime understanding of the Michael Ignatieff, born in Toronto in But at the age of 11, Ignatieff was sent to Toronto to attend Upper Canada College as a boarder in At UCC, Ignatieff was elected a school prefect as Head of Wedd's House, was the captain of the varsity soccer team, and served as editor-in-chief of the school's yearbook. As well, Ignatieff volunteered for the Liberal Party during the federal election by canvassing the York South riding.