Self and Nation
A `RARE BOOK' FROM LOCAL AUTHORS
`Here is a rare book, a truly helpful piece of work on the psychology of nationalism. Stephen Reicher and Nick Hopkins, of St Andrews and Dundee Universities, focus much of their study of recent Scottish experience, drawing on inter-views with political activists. The cast light on why our `Unionists' and nationalists feel so sure their side represents our national identity and the other lot doesn't. For once it is a compliment to say a book raises more questions than it answers. Stephen Reicher and Nick Hopkins open up large questions closer inspection' - Glasgow Herald
`In this impressive book Stephen Reicher and Nick Hopkins draw from a wealth of research to address issues of nationality, national identity and nationalism that lie at the heart of core topics in social psychology and its cognate disciplines. They have produced a powerful and scholarly text that interweaves an abundance of rich empirical data with a broad-reaching and timely theoretical statement. Moreover, the content is not confined to matters of national identity but also extends to treatments of stereotyping, prejudice, intergroup conflict, leadership, collective action, and the self .... For all these reasons, the book should serve essential and compelling reading for a very broad audience' - S Alexander Haslam, Australian National University
`Stephen Reicher and Nick Hopkins write with elegance and clarity, drawing the reader into their argument, without losing any of its complexity and nuance. This book deserves to make a major impact in studies of nationalism. It ought to become a classic.... I'm quite bowled over - it's really brilliant' - David McCrone, Edinburgh University
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This is encapsulated in the title of Hobsbawm and Ranger's influential book, The
Invention of Tradition. In the Introduction to this edited collection of essays,
Hobsbawm writes, 'it is clear that plenty of political institutions, ideological
It is only by identifying the characteristics which define an object as such (
whether it be a kilt, a clan tartan, a tradition or whatever) that we can determine
when it exists and hence how old it is. For instance, if the short kilt is a
development of ...
The anonymous analyst notes that the various attempts to build a national shrine,
a 'historical' capital, a legitimate leadership all went against existing traditions
rather than re-modelled them. It is concluded that 'Sebe's appeals to a Ciskeian ...
It was therefore up to the Communists 'to link up the present struggle with the
people's revolutionary traditions and past' (quoted in Schwarz, 1982: 55).
Schwarz goes on to quote James Klugman in order to show what this meant for
This is not just true in relation to the issue of differentiation but to all aspects of the
social identity tradition. The point was made forcefully by Tajfel (1979) and is
echoed with equal force by Turner twenty years later: 'process theories such as ...
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8 Changing Categories and Changing Contexts
9 Nationalist Psychology and the Psychology of Nationhood