Business Standard

Why civic nationalism must trump rabid ethnic nationalism

The author concludes that it is necessary to build healthy alternatives to the kinds of rabid ethnic nationalism that we see all around

Our identities are necessarily multi-layered, but ethnic nationalism privileges one of these layers, usually based on the narrow particularities of religion, language or culture, that makes it easy to mobilise certain groups
Premium

Our identities are necessarily multi-layered, but ethnic nationalism privileges one of these layers, usually based on the narrow particularities of religion, language or culture, that makes it easy to mobilise certain groups

Pranab Bardhan New Delhi
Tolerance for diversity and for minority rights had characterised some autocratic empire states in history (like Mughal or Ottoman), but among democratic states one of the earliest cases of making pluralism and liberal constitutional values the basis of nationalism is that of the United States (US), where after the decimation of the indigenous population, a country without much historical memory essentially became a nation of immigrants. 

Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg address starts with referring to the “nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal”. In a 2009 speech Barack Obama said, “One of the
Disclaimer: These are personal views of the writer. They do not necessarily reflect the opinion of www.business-standard.com or the Business Standard newspaper

Don't miss the most important news and views of the day. Get them on our Telegram channel

First Published: Oct 31 2019 | 9:23 PM IST

Explore News

To read the full story, subscribe to BS Premium now, at just Rs 249/ month.

Key stories on business-standard.com are available only to BS Premium subscribers.

Register to read more on Business-Standard.com