Faith in Nation

Faith in Nation : Exclusionary Origins of Nationalism

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In a departure from the unquestioning liberal consensus that has governed discussions of nationalism for the last quarter of the 20th century, Anthony Marx exposes the hidden underside of Western nationalism. Arguing that the true history of the nation began 200 years earlier, in the early modern era, he shows how state builders set about deliberately constructing a sense of national solidarity to support their burgeoning authority. Key to this process was the transfer of power from local to central rulers; the most suitable vehicle for effecting this transfer was religion. Religious intolerance, specifically the exclusion of religious minorities from the nascent state, provided the glue that bound together the remaining populations. Exposing the West's idealization of its exclusionary past, Marx forcefully undermines the distinction between a Western nationalism that is civic and tolerant by definition and an oriental nationalism founded on ethnicity and more

Product details

  • Hardback | 276 pages
  • 164.6 x 241.6 x 24.4mm | 544.32g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195154827
  • 9780195154825

Review quote

"A major addition to the social science literature on nationalism [and] a powerful argument against many of the most celebrated contemporary writers on the subject... The central point of the book is that nationalism results from a process of exclusion (most other writers have stressed inclusion), and particularly from internal discord over religion... As both a political scientist and a scrupulous historian, Marx uses this powerful scheme to explain and differentiate events that occurred in Spain, France, and England in the age of domestic religious conflicts. In this remarkable book, it is Saint Bartholomew whom the author proposes as the patron of nationalism. A grim view, but a rich and persuasive argument." Foreign Affairsshow more

About Anthony W. Marx

Anthony Marx is the 18th President of Amherst College. Previously, he was Professor of Political Science and Co-Director of the Center for Historical Social Science at Columbia University. He is the author of Making Race and Nation: A Comparison of the United States, South Africa, and Brazil, winner of the Barrington Moore Prize, and co-winner of the Ralph Bunche more

Rating details

25 ratings
3.72 out of 5 stars
5 12% (3)
4 48% (12)
3 40% (10)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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