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From Cavemen to Countrymen

The Linguistic Roots of Nationalism

Sherry Sufi



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01 May 2020
What does language have to do with nationalism? Why do some countries succeed in uniting their citizens under a common identity while others struggle? This book, based on an award-winning PhD thesis, makes a modest attempt at answering these questions. Its central argument is that the rise of modern nationalism has created a political landscape that necessitates the mobilisation of the masses into a common cultural form (nation), in order to integrate them into a common political form (state). Through a series of comparative case-studies, Sherry Sufi concludes that to achieve this, the most accessible formula for nationalists remains the combination of shared history and language, as opposed to the alternative route of exclusive appeals to ethnicity, religion, sect or ideology.
By:   Sherry Sufi
Dimensions:   Height: 229mm,  Width: 152mm,  Spine: 13mm
Weight:   345g
ISBN:   9781925826869
ISBN 10:   1925826864
Publication Date:   01 May 2020
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Reviews for From Cavemen to Countrymen: The Linguistic Roots of Nationalism

A language is not just a medium for sharing our thoughts, it's also a signal of who we are. Here, Sherry Sufi deeply explores a use of language that every historian appreciates: nationalist movements use a common language, invented if necessary, to forge diverse people into a single nation-state. Steven Pinker, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and the author of 'Enlightenment Now'.

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