Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism

Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism

by Benedict Anderson


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The world-famous work on the origins and development of nationalism

The full magnitude of Benedict Anderson’s intellectual achievement is still being appreciated and debated. Imagined Communities remains the most influential book on the origins of nationalism, filling the vacuum that previously existed in the traditions of Western thought. Cited more often than any other single English-language work in the human sciences, it is read around the world in more than thirty translations.

Written with exemplary clarity, this illuminating study traces the emergence of community as an idea to South America, rather than to nineteenth-century Europe. Later, this sense of belonging was formed and reformulated at every level, from high politics to popular culture, through print, literature, maps and museums. Following the rise and conflict of nations and the decline of empires, Anderson draws on examples from South East Asia, Latin America and Europe’s recent past to show how nationalism shaped the modern world.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781784786755
Publisher: Verso Books
Publication date: 09/13/2016
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 166,003
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Benedict Anderson was Aaron L. Binenkorp Professor of International Studies Emeritus at Cornell University. He was Editor of the journal Indonesia and author of numerous books including A Life Beyond Boundaries, Java in a Time of Revolution, The Spectre of Comparisons: Nationalism, Southeast Asia, and the World and The Age of Globalization: Anarchists and the Anticolonial Imagination.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Second Edition xi

1 Introduction 1

2 Cultural Roots 9

3 The Origins of National Consciousness 37

4 Creole Pioneers 47

5 Old Languages, New Models 67

6 Official Nationalism and Imperialism 83

7 The Last Wave 113

8 Patriotism and Racism 141

9 The Angel of History 153

10 Census, Map, Museum 163

11 Memory and Forgetting 187

Travel and Traffic: On the Geo-biography of Imagined Communities 207

Bibliography 230

Index 234

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"Sparkling, readable, densely packed." —-Peter Worsley, Guardian

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