Popular conceptions of nationhood in old and new European member states: Partial support for the ethnic-civic framework

J.G. Janmaat

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    Abstract

    One of the most influential theories in the study of nationalism has been the ethnic-East/civic-West framework developed by Hans Kohn. Using the 2002 Eurobarometer survey on national identity and building on earlier survey studies, this article examines whether the Kohn framework is valid at the level of popular understandings of nationhood. It scrutinizes the framework both conceptually - do people define nationhood in civic or ethnic terms? - and regionally - is the East indeed more ethnic than the West and the West more civic than the East? It will show that identity markers cluster in a political, a cultural and an ethnic dimension. Respondents do not see these dimensions as competing sources of nationhood, however. The article further lends some support for the regional component of the framework. Lastly, it argues that it is the intensity of national identifications rather than their qualitative nature (ethnic-civic) that correlates with xenophobia. © 2006 Taylor & Francis.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)50-78
    Number of pages29
    JournalEthnic and Racial Studies
    Volume29
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2006

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