Advanced English Vocabulary and Listening | Nations, Nationalism and Patriotism

Advanced English Vocabulary and Listening | Nations, Nationalism and Patriotism



hey everyone my name is Chris and I teach the only online ESL course for learning about politics history economics and other social sciences if you want to learn more about the various courses I teach on those subjects you can email me at the address in the description and we'll learn together this video is about nationalism nationalism is basically the belief that the people of the world are divided into distinct groups called nations nations are like countries they're supposed to be historical cultural groups and in fact if you look at the word nation it's actually very similar to the Latin word for being born so the idea of the nation is it's a community you're born into not all nations have a state so they don't all have their own countries like Kurdish people and not all of them agree with the states that rule them some countries have several nations ruled by one state and where there are no States there's no nationalism by the way if you don't know what the state is please see my video on that subject first nationalists think each nation should have its own state they get outraged when their rulers are from a different nation I get outraged by all rulers wherever they're from but then I'm not a nationalist like all the topics you learn in my courses the subject of nationalism has a canon of books you can read on the subject and we're going to dip into that Canon today some people tell me that nationalism does not have to mean violence it could be a productive thing well it does mean excluding people from the nation or restricting their freedom to move in and out of the land the nation says is theirs and sometimes using violence on them to keep them outside these are the Nationalists double standards one for our people from our nation and a different one for outsiders let's look at a line from Ernest Gilmer's nations and nationalism it may be that as Immanuel Kant believed partiality the tendency to make exceptions on one's own behalf or one's own case is the central human weakness from which all others flow and that it infects national sentiment as it does all else if we're told all our lives this is our nation we tend to be much more forgiving of what people from our nation do we tend to see the members of our nation more as individuals other nations especially enemies we don't forgive and we don't see them as individuals when I lived in China I found almost everyone I met hated Japan as a nation because of what it had done to China as a nation during World War two when I asked one guy why they cared so much about Japan which hasn't done anything to Chinese people since 1945 but don't care about the people who committed violence during the Cultural Revolution or the massacre in Tiananmen Square more recently he told me you can forgive people of your nation in the same way you forgive your family so he hated this whole other nation for things they did that that were worse I'm sure but not so different from what people from his nation had done and he didn't see a problem with that that's partiality that's a double standard when looking at history Gellner and the next person we're going to look at Benedict Anderson both consider literacy central to the development of nationalism Anderson's book is called imagined communities look near the top the first paragraph indent there it is imagined because the members of even the smallest nation will never know most of their fellow members meet them or even hear of them yet in the minds of each lives the image of their communion think of communion here as community or feeling like a community something like that so Anderson calls Nations imagined communities because we think of them as groups we belong to and groups we have things in common with and groups with the same interests as us but because of how big they are we can only imagine that that we're really one cohesive group and by imagining that we're this cohesive group called the nation we create the nation Anderson's main point in this book is that nations as we know them were created when books and newspapers began to be made in the national language of European States before these books came along there were no national languages States just ruled lots of different people in the territory if they had called those people would not have thought of themselves as German French or Italian like they do today but when printing came out in Europe and when people want started wanting to make money by printing things what Anderson calls print capitalism they helped shape people's thinking when everyone in this in the nation reads the same or a similar newspaper every morning they might feel a common bond in the early 1500s publishers printed in latin but there weren't enough latin speakers in europe to make much in the way of profit so they started printing in local languages or vernaculars the word the book tends to use nothing served to assemble related vernaculars more than capitalism which within the limits imposed by grammars and sin taxes created mechanically reproduced print languages capable of dissemination through the market dissemination means spreading by the way he's saying that it was capitalism choices by publishers trying to earn money that simplified these local languages in order to sell books and rulers use writing even today to create and recreate the idea of the nation on the next page he says you can see in the middle here today the Thai government actively discourages attempts by foreign missionaries to provide its hilltribe minorities with their own transcription systems and to develop publications in their own languages the same government is largely indifferent to what these minorities speak transcription is writing by the way so the government of Thailand doesn't want the hill tribes of Thailand to have their own written language because then they might stop reading time and consider themselves separate nations and no state wants that most nationalists seem to think the bond among people that we call a nation is primordial primordial means it has existed since the beginning of time or at least for centuries but that isn't a very accurate way to understand them take a look at Eric Hobsbawm book nations and nationalism since 1780 like most serious students I do not regard the nation as a primary or as an unchanging social entity it belongs exclusively to a particular and historically recent period it is a social entity only insofar as it relates to a certain kind of modern territorial state the nation-state and it is pointless to discuss nation to discuss nation and nationality except insofar as both relate to it moreover with Gellner I would stress the element of artifacts invention and social engineering which enters into the making of nations by the way with long passages like that with any words that you have you have trouble with it's good to read them more than once to really understand them and you might want to do that now what Eric Hobsbawm is saying here is the nation only exists in relation to the nation state and the nation state is quite a new invention nations were infected and recently I would add that even though they weren't necessarily inventions of the state for the ruling class the people in power used nationalism to keep themselves in power and sell their policies to their people in that way nationalism has become one of the most powerful ideas of the past 200 years my students often ask me what is the difference between nationalism and patriotism my answer is patriotism is nationalism for people who don't like the word nationalism when we think of nationalism a lot of people think of prejudice and exclusion like racism borders and going to war in the name of your country and they're right those are the most obvious effects of nationalism well most people who call themselves Patriots believe in all of the same things not all of them hate the national enemies they're given to hate but when there's a war or some other crisis they usually line up behind the state because they believe the state represents or should represent the nation to me patriotism is nationalism with a smiling face maybe I'm wrong but the more people claim to love their country the easier it is to trick them into defending it let's review the vocabulary we mentioned first we mentioned the word cannon cannon is all the most important books on a certain topic what what people consider the most important books we use dip into we're going to dip into some of these books we just read a little bit it's not necessarily read it could be tried of some other way we learned about double standards just having one standard or rule for one group usually for my group but a different rule for another group literacy means just being able to read like the word literature meaning books it usually means a whole society a whole country what are the literacy rates in this country the word cohesive is about groups talking about how groups work together as groups if it's a really good team that works well together it's a very cohesive group a bond is just connection we might feel a bond with other people from our nation but it might just be an artificial bond the word vernacular not a very common word but it's certainly very common in Benedict Anderson's work vernacular just means a local language primordial existing from since the beginning of time primordial nationalism is one very common form of nationalism and finally the word prejudice which is really just disliking people because of some group they belong to disliking people before you know them and it's the pre part of prejudice I've studied this subject for a while and all its really made me do is reject all nationalism I want us to think of ourselves as a global community of humans not exclusive groups / lines on the map who might have to fight each other if our masters tell us – that's all thanks everyone be sure to hit like subscribe comment if you have any questions or disagree with anything and share this video to any spaces where people are learning English see you next week

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