Religious nationalism and adaptation in Southeast Europe

Loizides, Neophytos G. (2009) Religious nationalism and adaptation in Southeast Europe. Nationalities Papers, 37 (2). pp. 203-227. ISSN 0090-5992. (doi:10.1080/00905990902745742) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00905990902745742

Abstract

Relating nationalism to other ideologies or cultural values is one of the most enigmatic scholarly activities. The enigma lies in the kaleidoscopic nature of nationalism and the ease with which it adapts or relates to philosophically opposed ideologies (Hutchinson & Smith, 1994, 3). For example, nationalism often assumes ties to liberalism, even though it presupposes a strong commitment to the national community that transcends individualism. It accommodates conservatism fairly well despite nationalism’s modernizing mission, and it has often been paired with communism, despite the latter’s internationalist rhetoric. More surprisingly, nationalism and religion often go hand in hand, despite their deep philosophical inconsistencies. Nationalism is inherently local, philosophically poor, and limited and it lacks the belief in afterlife salvation and creative intelligence as source of meaning behind the universe (Anderson, 1983; Greenfeld, 1996b). Yet it frequently relates to religions such as Christianity and Islam which are universal in their membership and message of salvation. The article examines the latter relationship, namely that of nationalism and religion, through evidence from Southeast Europe in the past three centuries. It identifies religious and linguistic cleavages as alternative sources of identity construction and points to the extent to which the interplay of the two can help us understand and evaluate contemporary theories of nationalism. Based on the Balkan experience, the article evaluates theories of nationalism put forward by Ernest Gellner (1983), Benedict Anderson (1983), Miroslav Hroch (1985), Anthony Smith (1971) and John Hutchinson (1987). It finally identifies the degree to which religion and nationalism have adapted to serve domestic constraints, new ideological waves and opportunities for ethnonational expansion or contraction facing modern nationalist movements as argued elsewhere by Hroch (1985 & 1998), Magocsi (1997) and Laitin, (1998).

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/00905990902745742
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations > Conflict Analysis Research Centre
Depositing User: Neophytos Loizides
Date Deposited: 01 Dec 2013 22:50 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 11:27 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/36773 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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