Considering that we have known for well over a century the common origin of all Europeans, Asians, Africans etc from the centre of Africa - and of their movement around the world from there, the question remains why does nationalism still remain such a potent force in the modern world. I bring this up because of a variety of factors such as
- The racist (termed nationalist) attitude of many Irish toward the English. These boards are proof of this with Brit bashing left, right and centre.
- Likewise the racist attitude many English people exhibit toward Ireland and the Irish such as in the recent newspaper article "Wanted. One4500000 superstitious idiot to run a small bankrupt republic of drunkards", including many negative portrayals in the past in magazines such as punch etc.
- Likewise the English and the French seem to hate each other half of the time (even when it is attempted to dress it up as a friendly rivalry).
- And the various nations, both old and recently formed around the world whose members have a prejudice against other people.
Isn't nationalism (particularly the racist variety), whether it be Irish nationalism, English nationalism or whatever else just a pseudoscience that makes the assumption that a big piece of land determines who we are mentally and personality wise etc - and should dictate where our hearts and minds lie.
I am just wondering that in this supposedly modern century, and considering the fact we know humans are in fact one species that evolved gradually over the past 200,000 - why do we continue to divide, stereotype and even hate people based on imaginary concepts such as nationality and nationhood. Not forgetting the sort of pseudoscience and quack theories which drove Europe into two world wars nearly destroying the place during the 20th century.
And I hate to bring this up, but I cannot help feel that religion plays a part (whether catholic/ Anglican/ protestant etc), what with their tale of the “tower of Babel” – which would seem to justify separating humans on the basis of supposed nations. For instance wasn’t the Reformation in part successful given that it gave in to nationalist bigotry in countries such as England and Holland etc where rulers convinced their people that they were “god’s chosen people”. Likewise the fight back against the reformation and Protestantism since then, whether in Ireland, Spain, Italy or wherever seems to be justified on the basis that “some heathen peoples like the English, Dutch or whatever” are heathens and heretics – hence we can justify despising them.
While in the past it is definite that our species was competitive for obvious reasons over resources, whether they be water / animals to hunt / territories rich in natural resources etc – the division along nationalist and so-called racial lines seems to be a human construct, and completely counter that one would find in ancient primates, or even primitive man – who was more concerned with simply staying alive, having enough to eat etc.
So would I be justified in suggesting that the bible, and in particular it’s tale of the Tower of Babel and the supposed scattering of the different races (not actually races at all consider Homo Sapiens are one species) to each corner of the earth, has a lot to blame for the racism, nationalism and division found in the world today?
Jaysus, you got a summary of that?
You know there is a politics forum on this site here http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=852
We didnt know the out of Africa theory for a century. Darwin posited the notion humans arose in Africa because the other great apes were there. But proof didn't come about until DNA testing. We came from north east Africa, not central. We also have extra DNA from older human species that weren't "us". Well Europeans and Asians do. Africans are "purer" in that sense.
Religion is a symptom, not the cause. The cause is built in tribalism. Bugger all to do with race, just race makes it easier to point out the other. EG Ulster. They're genetically the same "race". Not just talking white either, but on the DNA level. Scots and Irish are very very close(as are the English and the Irish particularly western English county types). All about tribalism.
One world nationalism is a contradiction is it not? Nations= division. No i'm using a scientific, logical justification here for attacking nationalism and in particular the part that the bible has had to play in justifying racism, nationalism and division through the Tower of Babel myth - and pointing out at the same time that humans are one species, homo sapiens. Irish/ English/ French/ German / American are artificial constructs as all 7 billion humans present on the earth today are homo sapiens.
The Bible is hardly solely to blame. Nationalism is hardly confined to predominantly Judeo-Christian parts of the world ?
Or in other words an inability to evolve beyond the level of the playground bully
I honestly can't see how you came to the conclusion that nationalism comes from a story in the bible
I find it hilarious that the OP attempts to use modern science to denigrate nationalism (a political ideology based simply on doing the best in the interest of one's own nation) as racist, which is itself a Victorian concept discredited by genetics, another modern science.
What was discredited by modern science then? As for "doing the best in the interest of one's own nation" - to be brutally honest this means nothing as the nation-state is a relative newcomer in terms of the time span that homo sapiens have walked the earth. To be honest loyalty in reality can never really go beyond the local - nation states just seem to have lumped hundreds of different groupings in prior centuries into one entity, while using the unscientific claim that those who inhabit this artificial construct constitute a "race", different from "the race over there", and hence the reason for much of the division today.
The tower of babel is basically a tale still adhered to by religions which seems to justify a separation of "races" and peoples based on the assumption of god's intervention in destroying the tower and scattering the people - so in other word's (and this notion is still peddled by many religionists) racism and bigotry along with the artificial division of one species (homo sapiens) can be justified, and the illogical notion of "been against the other race" is also justified because it is the supposed will of god
I am 100% in agreement with the OP.
The concept of nationality is completely out of date and unecessary. It's time to merge the human race together as one. One nation of 7 billion people without religion countries etc.
I hate it when people say they're proud to be irish or english or american. It's all completely unecessary. The concept of nationality is all made up by humans just like religion. Do birds or other species know when they are in Britain or Ireland? Nope because it's just made by the human race. Pointless. Get rid of it.
Nations are clusters of people who self-identify (and/or are identified by others) as a cohesive group based on shared language, history, and culture. States are essentially political creations designed to govern citizens, who may or may not all be members of the same nation.
I think the distinction needs to be drawn because states often play a role in defining the nation, or at least sharpening their sense of group identity. Nationalism flourishes under repression - the Irish and the Basques are clear examples. But sometimes nation-building is necessary to preserve the power of the state (the French would be a clear example of this). Actually, the French are an interesting example: the modern French state essentially created the nation, whereas in Germany, the opposite happened: the modern state arose from the pre-existing German nation ("volk").
I don't think nationalism is necessarily bad. Civic nationalism, or citizenship based on a shared set of political principles, is far more open and flexible than ethnic nationalism, which is essentially closed to outsiders. And having a shared sense of national belonging is an important component of social cohesion and resource distribution (there is generally more inequality in ethnically diverse countries; people don't want to distribute resources to the "other").
I don't think that the "common origins" argument washes, as peoples' immediate situation is always going to be more relevant than their historical origins (look at the experience of the US as a nation of immigrants). The real question here is, how do states handle having citizens who are not part of the "national" majority as defined? This is where things tend to go terribly wrong. If states can control that impulse (which is hard, because there are always going to be politicians who want to whip up the majority against the minority for their own political gain), then nationalism does not necessarily need to be a negative thing.
It's the way we are wired, especially to be suspicious of anything or anyone we are not familiar with or something or someone that is not "ours" or "one of us". The way in which we play sport and support teams is a great example of this.
Some people, and groups of people like to live in a different way and do things differently than others.
Nothing wrong with that. Why does everybody need to be the same? life would be very boring if everyone in the world was cooked up in their tiny apartment posting on boards about how bad the Catholic church is.