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Nationalism and Democracy

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FINAL PROJECT

“ NATIONALISM AND DEMOCRACY”

PREPARED AND SUBMITTED BY
HARSHWARDHAN SINGH
10BAL117
SEMESTER - VI

SUBMITTED TO
MR. Nitesh Chaudhary
(ASST.PROF)(POL SCI) NIRMA UNIVERSITY

ACADEMIC YEAR
2012-2013

DECLARATION

The text report in the project is the outcome of my own efforts and no part of this report has been copied in unauthorized name and further no part has been incorporated without due acknowledgement.

HARSHWARDHAN SINGH
10BAL117
SEMESTER VI

Acknowledgement

As a student of B.A.LL.B. (Hons.) of Institute Of Law Nirma University I had to undergo for a Project Work assigned by Asst. Prof. Nitesh Chaudhary. The project work was done under the guidance of Asst. Prof. Nitesh Chaudhary. I am grateful to him for his guidance and help due to which I was able to understand and complete this project.

CERTIFICATE

This is to certify that Mr.Harshwardhan Singh Roll No. 10BAL117 has done project on the topic “NATIONALISM AND DEMOCRACY” for the subject political science as a part of their course. This is his/her original work.

Nitesh Chaudhary (Asst.Proffessor)
(POLITICAL SCIENCE)

INTRODUCTION

We look at Nationalism, as an ideology which gives “national identity” to individuals and promotes unity amongst the people on the basis of culture, ethnicity, religion, race and it always have democratic nature, but there is another side of nationalism. When we begin to think seriously about nationalism in the light of catastrophic consequences of what appeared to be a sudden explosion of Nationalism in the former Yugoslavia in the early 1990’s, where some people who had been living side by side in cities end up driving out their neighbours from their homes, killing and raping them in the brutal process that came to be called “ethnic cleansing”.
Nationalism is an ideology which imagines the community in a particular way (as nations), asserts the primacy of this collective identity over others. The two core elements of nationalism are ‘nation’ and ‘national identity’. The nationalism on face of it looks like that it provides individual a national identity and promotes unity amongst community but on the other hand nationalism also while giving a national identity to individual’s lead to promote particular community’s interest over all other communities which results to mass killings, brutal rapes and human beings fighting with each other on the basis of national identity. The term “nationalism” is generally used to describe two phenomena first, the attitude that the members of a nation have when they care about their national identity, and second, the actions that the members of a nation take when seeking to achieve (or sustain) self-determination raises questions about the concept of a nation (or national identity), which is often defined in terms of common origin, ethnicity, or cultural ties, and while an individual's membership in a nation is often regarded as involuntary, it is sometimes regarded as voluntary. On this basis we can say that Nationalism always have an ‘exclusive’ factor on the basis of culture, language, religion.
Democracy is an ideology which has central principle that the people or subject of the state must be given most important status i.e. “the will of the people”. Democracy consists of giving extensive rights to citizens in all three spheres i.e. Political, Social, Economic, freedom and equality to all irrespective of their culture, language or religion. On this basis we can say that Democracy always have an ‘inclusive’ factor as it always gives importance to all the citizens irrespective of their religion, culture, or language. So we can say that Nationalism and Democracy have a relationship that can be seen from all the great movements like “French revolution”, but both ideologies work on different logics and have different results if we take look at both of these separately.
In this project the researcher would focus on the relationship that exists between Nationalism and Democracy that has a major impact on today’s world. Researcher will study the different angles through which Nationalism and Democracy can be examined and try to establish difference between the two.

OBJECTIVE * To study the concept of ‘Nationalism’. * To study the relationship between Nationalism and Democracy.

HYPOTHESIS * Nationalism and democracy are interrelated. * Nationalism works on the principles of Democracy.

RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

The whole project has been done on the doctrinal research and for which I have gone through various books, articles and websites related to the topic.

RESEARCH QUESTIONS * What are the various aspects of Nationalism? * Nationalism and Democracy always co-exist or there can be Nationalism that is different from the principles of Democracy.

LITERATURE REVIEW

BOOKS * NATIONALISM- A critical introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman (2002).

From this book researcher studied Nationalism in deep and got to know about its basic elements and also its relationship with Democracy. The author in this book talks about Nationalism and Democracy together and also tries them to study through different angle so to know whether there is any difference between the two. The book also comprises of Kinds of Nationalism i.e. Good and Bad Nationalisms, which enabled researcher to go beyond the thinking that Nationalism as an ideology is always good.
The author in this book also argues that there is an intimate relationship between nationalism and democracy, at least since the French Revolution, usually taken to be the starting point for modern nationalism. Since then, there has been a succession of struggles, supposedly simultaneously nationalist and democratic, against various forms of authoritarian rule, from absolutist monarchy and empire in the nineteenth century to communist totalitarianism in the twentieth. This has strengthened the belief that the democratic struggle for self-government and the nationalist struggle for self-determination are closely connected if not identical, particularly in the struggle for national liberation. At the same time, it has been argued that it is the nation-state that has provided the basic framework within which democratic rights have been most effectively demanded, accorded and sustained.

ARTICLES * Nationalism and Democracy: Competing or Complementary Logics, by Marc Helbling. (2009)
In this article author states that on initial consideration, the logics of nationalism and democracy seem to be contradictory. Nationalism appears to be predicated upon a doctrine of exclusivity, whereas democracy appears to be based on an inclusivist one. Upon careful contemplation, however, one notices that, historically, these two phenomena have frequently coexisted; even today, democratic regimes seem to exist and thrive (almost exclusively) within nation-states.
The researcher has studied from this article, the author’s aim to bring together and discuss those works that have addressed the question of whether nationalism and democracy constitute complementary or competing logics. The debate operates on both a theoretical/normative level, and an empirical level. For a first group of scholars, democracy cannot exist without nationalism; it is thought that a certain degree of (cultural) homogeneity is needed for a political system to work. These scholars argue that a common national identity fosters solidarity and trust and gives human beings a sense of belonging. Empirical studies have revealed that (cultural) heterogeneity leads to the deterioration of trust, political participation, and the overall solvency of the welfare state. Those who emphasize the contradictory logics of these two concepts have not found such correlations in their empirical findings—revealing that multicultural states are also prone to success. Hence, for them, there is no reason to exclude people from democratic decision-making processes on grounds of their nationality, something that undermines the very principles of democracy. Even worse, it is argued that the fusion of nationalistic and democratic principles has led to some of the deadliest conflicts in modern history.

CHAPTER-I
NATIONALISM

To understand Nationalism we need to look at the arguments involved about the “nation” and especially about “national identity”. In this chapter I would on mainly focus on “National identity” as it is the core element of nationalism. There are certain features inherent in all forms of nationalism this does not suggests that there can be no different forms of nationalism but more important is to look at the similarities between different nationalism in order to know more about the core components of it. Fundamental to all forms of nationalism are processes of categorization that create and reproduce as enemies, strangers and others those who do not fit inside the nation. This categorization feature of nationalism have divisive consequences and have implication in the short or long term for issues of democracy, human rights, citizenship and sometimes on the survival of minorities within nation.
The term “Nationalism” has multiple meanings, it centrally consists of two phenomena: (1) the attitude that the members of a nation have when they care about their identity as members of that nation and (2) the actions that the members of a nation take in seeking to achieve (or sustain) some form of political sovereignty. The first phenomena consists the concept of a nation or national identity, about what it is to belong to a nation, and about how much one ought to care about one's nation. Nation and national identity can be defined in terms of common origin, ethnicity, or cultural ties. The degree of care for one's nation that is required by nationalists is often, but not always, taken to be very high, according to such views, the claims of one's nation take precedence over rival contenders for authority and loyalty. Second phenomena consist of the questions about whether sovereignty entails the acquisition of full statehood with complete authority for domestic and international affairs, or whether something less than statehood would be sufficient.
Despite the multiple definitions, there is a fair amount of agreement about what is historically the most typical form of nationalism. It is the one which features the supremacy of the nation's claims over other claims to individual allegiance, and which features full sovereignty as the persistent aim of its political program. Territorial sovereignty is regarded as defining element of state power, and essential for nationhood, this was also seen in classic modern works by Hobbes, Locke, and Rousseau.

The territorial state as political unit is seen by nationalists as centrally ‘belonging’ to one ethnic-cultural group, and actively charged with protecting and promulgating its traditions.This conception of nationalists leads to what is also referred as bad nationalism which results in holocaust, rapes and people immigrating from their native land, this where the question rises whether nationalism is always positive or sometimes have a negative consequences. This form of nationalism was most prominent in the 19th century in Europe and Latin America. This classical nationalism later spread across the world.
It is important to understand issue of national identity which is a fundamental aspect of nationalism. National identity can be defined as the extent to which people may be seen or see themselves as members of a given nation. In order to understand nationalism we need to look at the problems associated with the construction of a national identity. In particular I argue that the positing of a national identity involves drawing and invoking particular kinds of distinctions, contrasts between a putative ‘us’ and ‘them’, which can raise as many problems as they solve. Such distinctions can easily be hardened, fixed into value-laden absolutes of various kinds, and lead to or require the construction of boundaries and barriers, both material and symbolic, whose intent or effect is to exclude a negatively defined ‘other’. This is not an automatic, spontaneous or organic process which happens, as it were, by itself. Rather it involves the deployment of powerful agencies, messages and symbols for particular purposes and may involve conflict and contestation between existing and potential nations, between competing nationalists, and between nationalists and others. If we look in Indian perspective, RSS and BJP defines or marks “Muslims” as others and “Hindu” as self, this is done with the base of nationalism but has catastrophic consequences like what happened in Babri Masjid, Bombay riots, Godhra riots, so we need to have a in depth knowledge of nationalism, so that we cannot be used by some powerful agencies like RSS and BJP for fulfillment of their personal interest.
Identity is a term that has been used with growing frequency in a variety of contexts by social scientists, cultural theorists and others over the past thirty years. Originally a term applying to individuals, there has been an increasing application of identity to groups and collectivities. Today, it has become a common term in a range of discourses, particularly with the postmodernist interest in the development of multiple and hybrid identities as a response to globalization.
The concept of a specifically political identity can be traced back to Locke, Hume and James Mill and is itself arguably rooted in the context of the emergence of the modern bureaucratic state and its need to mobilize subjects for (especially military) purposes. John Stuart Mill drew on these previous theorizations in arguing that considerations of nationality and democracy were intimately connected. In making such a claim, it may be argued, Mill only made explicit what was already implicit, that his predecessors’ conception of identity was located within a national frame of reference, that they took for granted the assumption that there is an intrinsic relationship between personal, individual identity and group national identity.
In relation to nationalism at any rate, the concept of identity is fraught with political significance. The very notion of an identity presumes other from whom one is different. If identity is about sameness, about identifying with those considered similar, it is also about difference, distinguishing oneself from those who are dissimilar.
However, it is argued, important here to distinguish between diversity and difference. ‘Diversity in itself cannot generate identity and in order to achieve this, to transform diversity into difference, there must be opposition, a significant other is needed’. Any notion of group identity in particular necessarily involves some kind and process of categorization, in order to distinguish between those who are in the group and those who are outside it, between those who are similar enough to be included and those who are different and are therefore to be excluded.
Such categorization is inherently divisive because categories segment the world, dividing ‘us’ from ‘them’, ‘insiders’ from ‘outsiders’. In the case of national identity, this divisive categorization raises a number of important issues. There is in the first place the question of why such categories have to be national. It may be that human beings have a fundamental and deep-seated need to belong to a group, to identify themselves with one set (or sets) of people rather than another , but it is far from clear that this set has to be a national one.

CHAPTER-II
NATIONALISM AND DEMOCRACY

It is often argued that there is an intimate relationship between nationalism and democracy, at least since the French Revolution, usually taken to be the starting point for modern nationalism. Since then, there has been succession of struggles, supposedly simultaneously nationalist and democratic, against various forms of authoritarian rule, from absolutist monarchy and empire in the nineteenth century to communist totalitarianism in the twentieth. This has strengthened the belief that the democratic struggle for self-government and the nationalist struggle for self-determination are closely connected if not identical, particularly in the struggle for national liberation. At the same time, it has been argued that it is the nation-state that has provided the basic framework within which democratic rights have been most effectively demanded, accorded and sustained. In this chapter I will be focus on different dynamics involved in “Nationalism” and “Democracy”.
Upon initial consideration, the logics of nationalism and democracy seem to be contradictory. Nationalism appears to be predicated upon a doctrine of exclusivity, whereas democracy seems to be based on an inclusivist one. Upon careful contemplation, however, one notices that historically these two phenomena have frequently coexisted; even today, democratic regimes exist and thrive (almost exclusively) within “nation states”.
For a group of scholars, democracy cannot exist without nationalism; it is thought that a certain degree of (cultural) homogeneity is needed for a political system to work. These scholars argue that a common national identity or common (cultural) traits foster solidarity and trust and give human beings a sense of belonging. For those who emphasize the contradictory logics of these two concepts there is no reason to exclude people from democratic decision-making processes on grounds of nationality, something that undermines the very principles of democracy.
While democracy can also be defined in various ways, and can be approached from different perspectives, virtually all scholars agree that it is a system of government in which political sovereignty is retained by ‘the people,’ and exercised by them either directly or through their representatives. The question that is important for us with reference to the relationship between nationalism and democracy is whom do we mean by ‘the people?’ While some scholars consider the entire world population to be ‘the people,’ and underscore the notion that everyone has the right to be part of a democratic regime, others point out that a world democracy is simply not imaginable for reasons of feasibility. Even more importantly, they argue that a certain degree of homogeneity is necessary for a democracy to work. It is here that nationalism comes in, the problems and obscurities begin, and the crucial questions can be raised like what does (cultural) homogeneity contribute to the functioning of democracy? What characteristics, exactly, need to be homogeneous for democracy to work? Does (cultural) heterogeneity pose a problem for the functioning of democracy? Or might it be that (cultural) homogeneity undermines the basic principles of democracy?
Nationalism has become part of this discussion because it is often considered as a phenomenon that creates or presupposes homogeneity. Asserting that nationalism and democracy constitute complementary logics could simply mean that people have to recognize themselves as a sovereign body before they can build up a democracy. Starting from here, the question would appear to be as follows: Are there any additional elements that need to be shared by the subjects of a democracy, and if so, which elements and how many? Scholars often differentiate between the ideal types of civic and ethnic nationalisms. For the purpose of our present inquiry, the adherents of the first form of nationalism are those who argue that people of a functioning democratic regime share some democratic and liberal values, while those who espouse the second form require common cultural traits in the narrow sense such as language or religion. It suffices to say, however, that there are different forms of nationalism, and that these different forms invoke different elements in their standards for homogeneity. While reading the works that question the necessity of cultural homogeneity for a democratic system to work, it becomes clear that the debate about whether nationalism and democracy are complementary or competing logics is more a question about degrees than completely opposite positions.
In Abizadeh’s discussion, it appears that he does not completely reject the idea that a shared culture (at least in certain circumstances) contributes to a better functioning of democracy. He mainly disapproves of the argument that nationalism provides a necessary or the only basis for democratic decision-making processes. In a similar way, Moore has pointed out that it would be too crude to claim that more nationalism always leads to better democracy. Instead, it seems correct to say that a common national identity facilitates democratic governance. Finally, Young recognizes the positive valence of the distinctness of peoples. She agrees with proponents of liberal nationalism such as Miller and Tamir, that the bloodlessness of cosmopolitan individualism fails to recognize that human beings are born into a community with a given history, a set of traditions and meanings. Nonetheless, she prefers to abandon the conception of nation and prefers to speak of ‘distinct people’, the distinctness of which emerges as a matter of degrees. On the other hand, it also appears that those who emphasize the complementary logics do not adopt essentialist positions and do not necessarily speak of thick nationalism that requires a common language or religion for a democratic system. Indeed, most of them refer to thin nationalism that consists of common values concerning social justice. Miller in particular seems to require the latter form of nationalism. His conception of nationalism comes very close to the idea of democracy. This is made clear when he defines nations as ‘communities that do things together, take decisions, achieve results, and so forth.’ Miller’s citizens have an ‘active identity’ and create their own nation. In order for this to happen, people must believe in their goals, and consider one another as partners who can be trusted.
These inter-related arguments for nationalism and democracy are too complex, so we need to understand it in a systematic manner. To begin with, it is important to note that, if they have appeared at times to overlap, arguments for democracy and for nationalism are not identical. As with nationalism, there are of course numerous disputes about what democracy is or should be, democracy is after all one of if not the most essentially contested of all concepts. Although it has been argued that there is an essential core meaning, ‘the idea of popular power’ or ‘a form of government, in which the people rule’, this only raises a lot of questions, particularly in terms of the relationship between democracy and nationalism. Democracy have to do inter alia with who the ‘people’ are, with how they are to rule or be represented, with the scope and extent of popular sovereignty, with the nature and desirability of participation; with rights (of individuals and collectives, of majorities and minorities); and with citizenship.
Nationalism, on the other hand, if it may at times appear similar, in demanding self-determination for a given nation, or seeking the inclusion in a given state of the whole nation, works on slightly different grounds. It is a particular nation that seeks self-determination, or inclusion in a particular state. Nationalism is then, as Beetham and Boyle put it, ‘particularistic, emphasizing the differences between peoples, and the value of a nation’s distinctive culture, tradition and ways of living. Nationalism tends to be exclusive whereas democracy is inclusive’.
In the ‘real world’ of course there may be all sorts of problems with states, which claim to be democratic, abiding fully by this inclusionary logic. ‘Really existing democracies’ may fall short of the ideal in all sorts of ways. The form, scope and extent of popular sovereignty may be distorted or restricted in various ways; democratic procedures may be flouted or curtailed in significant respects, there may then be a considerable gap between promise and performance, between image and reality. A democratic state per se does not, however, require or posit the existence of an other, who has to be seen as different in some fundamental way, and who, by virtue of this difference, has to be excluded or barred. One could argue rather the opposite: that democracy, rather than fearing the other, thrives on the presence of diversity, on the existence of different interests and views which are essential to debate, discussion and choice.

On the other hand, nationalism in all of its forms is necessarily preoccupied with boundaries, with a distinction between those within and those without, with a need to identify some as belonging to the nation and others who do not. Although both nationalism and democracy may appear then to share similar concerns, they do so from different angles and with different emphases. The nationalist emphasis on the over-riding importance of the sovereignty of the nation tends to lead to a focus on questions of security and power, typically in the form of a nation-state; the concern is not so much with participation as with membership, not so much with accountability as identification, not so much on rights as on identity. More generally, rather than openness, nationalism is more focused on closure. Difference and diversity pose problems, threatening to unsettle or problematize what is given, even hallowed by the past.
From this angle, democracy and nationalism have different priorities, and arguably obey or exhibit different logics, which may be more likely over time to diverge than converge. There is no intrinsic or necessary connection between them, and indeed it may be that the two principles are in important respects antithetical, as Ringmar have argued, focusing on the issue of representation.

CONCLUSION

In the project I have focused on important components of democracy and nationalism, and through this study I have come to know that Nationalism and Democracy are not inter-related and these two ideologies works on different logic. So my hypothesis has being proved wrong through this project.
Democracy does not entail nationalism, and nationalism can certainly exist without democracy. In fact, it could be said that the two principles are contradictory. In a democracy the only thing that should matter is how responsive political leaders are to the will of the people, yet who these leaders are should be irrelevant. According to a nationalist doctrine, the opposite holds.
These two ideologies have different concepts of representation involved, one based on interest, the other on identity. ‘While the principle of democracy makes those political leaders legitimate who represent what the people want, the principle of nationalism makes those political leaders legitimate who represent what the people is’ . It is, however, not only a matter of representation but perhaps more fundamentally of who is to be represented in the first place and its implications for the polity, particularly when this takes the form of a nation-state. A similar kind of distinction, between what he calls ‘the competing logics of democracy and the nation-state’, has also been made by Alfred Stepan, focusing on the issue of citizenship rights. Analyzing the case of newly independent Estonia, where a whole raft of decisions were made to bolster a sense of national identity through denying citizenship rights to the great majority of Russian residents (something like 40 per cent of the population), Stepan notes that this ‘led to a shrinkage in the political and social spaces where Estonians and non-Estonians interact and compete democratically’. So from above it can be again proved that Nationalism and Democracy are not inter-related ideologies

BIBLIOGRAPHY

BOOKS REFFERED * NATIONALISM- A critical introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman (2002).

ARTICLES REFFERED

* Nationalism and Democracy: Competing or Complementary Logics, by Marc Helbling. (2009)

* Democracy, Nationalism and Culture: A Social Critique of Liberal Monoculturalism, by Daniele Conversi. (2007)

* Constitutional democracy and civic nationalism by Donald Ipperciel.(2007)

WEBSITES REFFERED

* http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/nationalism/

--------------------------------------------
[ 1 ]. http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/nationalism/
[ 2 ]. NATIONALISM- A critical introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman (2002).
[ 3 ]. NATIONALISM- A critical introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman (2002).
[ 4 ]. Nationalism and Democracy: Competing or Complementary Logics, by Marc Helbling. (2009)
[ 5 ]. NATIONALISM- A critical introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman (2002).
[ 6 ]. Nationalism and Democracy: Competing or Complementary Logics, by Marc Helbling. (2009)
[ 7 ]. NATIONALISM- A critical introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman (2002).
[ 8 ]. Constitutional democracy and civic nationalism by Donald Ipperciel.(2007)
[ 9 ]. Nationalism and Democracy: Competing or Complementary Logics, by Marc Helbling. (2009)
[ 10 ]. NATIONALISM- A critical introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman (2002).
[ 11 ]. NATIONALISM- A critical introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman (2002).

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