Books By Author
O-P


Books:

Summary: 'Nationalism is one of the most hotly contested issues of our time. Despite its political significance and a burgeoning academic literature, however, there is surprisingly little in the way of general theoretical surveys of the field. My book aims to fill this gap by offering a comprehensive introduction to contemporary theories of nationalism, from primordialism to modernism and ethno-symbolism, as well as a systematic summary of the major criticisms raised against each. I lay special emphasis on the contributions of recent approaches and stress the need for transcending the fundamental assumptions of mainstream analyses. I treat nationalism above all as a form of discourse, a way of seeing and interpreting the world, and conclude by proposing a framework of analysis for the study of nationalism, drawing on the theoretical advances made by feminism, postcolonialism and postmodernism.' (U. Ozkirimli)


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Summary: Few topics have proven as contentious as facism. Scholars have argued about its origins, definition, and even the ability to compare the experience of fascism in different contexts. After establishing himself as one of the world's leading historians of Spain, Stanley Payne applies his historical skills to the topic of Fascism and, in so doing, provides one of the single best overviews of the topic available. In addition to providing very useful histories of the Italian and German cases, Payne also describes the many minor fascist movements that developed around Europe and the world. Beyond providing a history of fascism, Payne comments on virtually all of the major historiographical debates—thus providing students of fascism with a fabulous reference book. Given the level of debate in this area of scholarship, it is not surprising that his "Retrodictive Theory of Fascism" has proven contraversial. Still, his definition of fascism (building on one offered by Roger Griffin) as "a form of revolutionary ultranationalism—a program for national rebirth based on a primarily vitalist philosophy, extreme elitism, mass mobilization, the promotion of violence, and military virtues" should provide scholars with a useful starting point. [E. Zuelow]


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Summary: This is a very useful reference book covering an impressive span of geographic space and national experience. It is likely to be of particular interest to graduate students preparing for qualifying examinations, though will also provide a handy reference tool for undergraduates and faculty. The book begins with brief descriptions of important military and diplomatic events. The next section provides a series of useful maps. The third section offers encyclopedia-like descriptions of Europe’s "Old" and "Sub" states. The fourth section is especially useful and consists of historical chronologies of each European "nation" (including a number of "stateless nations"). The book is filled out with statistical tables, biographies of important nationalist figures, a glossary of important terms, and a select bibliography that is divided up by nation. All told, it packs a tremendous amount of information into 336 pages. Of course, such a concise treatment contains omissions. Students making use of the bibliographies should be aware that they are often out of date. Readers should also note that it covers only the modern period—a contestable choice. [E. Zuelow]


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Summary: In an age when Hollywood dominates global movie theatres and films are seldom entirely indigenous to their nation of origin, the existence of "national cinema" is rightly debated by film scholars. In this useful addition to the literature on national film, Lance Pettitt provides a fascinating survey of the appearance of Ireland in film and on television. Scholars and students not directly concerned with Ireland or with film studies will find sections providing concise overviews of Irish history and film theory very useful. There are also interesting chapters outlining the development of Irish cinema and Irish television. The strength of the volume is in its wide-ranging discussion of the films/programs themselves, however. Pettitt’s coverage ranges from Hollywood-based images of Ireland in movies like The Quiet Man and Ryan’s Daughter to the popular, Irish-made, situation comedy Father Ted. There is also a solid discussion of television coverage of the Troubles, both in documentary and fiction formats. The author’s analysis is always lucid and often inspired. This book will be of greatest interest to scholars and students focused on Irish topics and especially those concerned with representations of Ireland, but the book should also be useful for those interested in how nations are represented in popular formats. [E. Zuelow]


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Summary: This book offers an insightful analysis of the concept of national identity and of the duties and privileges it entails for individuals and political communities. From the conviction that, in the modern world, "nationalism is an almost inescapable political project," Ross Poole embarks on a philosophical enquiry into the purpose of nationalism, the nature of human beings’ identity ties to institutions like the nation and the state, the characteristics of the bond between the modern nation and the modern state, the sources and nature of freedom, the rights and duties of aboriginal peoples, and the future of nationalism (5).

In Chapter 1, "The coming of nationalism," Poole examines the origins and aims of nationalism, analyzing several of the most influential theories of nationalism that have been expounded in the last few decades. In the second (and most important) chapter, "National and other identities," Poole interrogates the leading philosophical accounts of identity and personhood, rejecting their atomistic presuppositions in favor of a conception that is grounded in (i) our material needs as human beings and (ii) our existence as social, self-interpreting subjects; Poole then uses this conception to examine why national identity has been so successful in "[asserting] a certain precedence over other identities," and what moral principles follow from this precedence (82). Chapter 3, "Three concepts of freedom," analyzes the conceptions of freedom articulated by liberalism, republicanism, and nationalism: it argues that all three conceptions are indispensable in the modern era—an age of subjectivity and choice—and that citizenship within a national state is both a form of, and a prerequisite for, freedom. In Chapter 4, "Multiculturalism, Aboriginal rights and the nation," Poole focuses on the problems of indigenous rights in his native Australia, reflecting on what rights aboriginal peoples have, what special duties the nation owes to them, and under what circumstances a minority nation’s right to secede should be exercised. Chapter 5, "The end of the affair?" raises the question of nationalism’s future prospects, and considers three forms of cosmopolitanism that might eventually come to replace it. [Tom Donahue]