Anti-nationalism denotes the sentiments associated with the opposition to nationalism, arguing that it is undesirable or dangerous. Some anti-nationalists are humanitarians or humanists who pursue an idealist form of world community, and self-identify as world citizens. They reject chauvinism, jingoism and militarism, and want humans to live in peace rather than perpetual conflict. They do not necessarily oppose the concepts of countries, nation states, national boundaries, cultural preservation or identity politics.

Some anti-nationalists oppose all types of nationalism, even ethnic nationalism among oppressed minority groups. This strain of anti-nationalism typically advocates the elimination of national boundaries. Variations on this theme are often seen in Marxist theory. Marx and Engels rejected nationalism as a whole, believing "the working class have no country". [1] More recently, certain groups descended from the Maoist tradition of Marxism have moved towards this fiercely anti-nationalist stance in a different way than Trotskyists, saying that although it may be a painful and unpopular position to hear, ultimately opposing all nationalism strengthens proletarian internationalism. Many Trotskyists, however, such as Chris Harman, were critical of nationalism while advocating support for what they saw as progressive national struggles. [2]

In recent times, Islamism has been described as anti-nationalist movement, emphasizing Muslims and discarding the notion of nationality.

Anarchism has developed a critique of nationalism that focuses on nationalism's role in justifying and consolidating state power and domination. Through its unifying goal, nationalism strives for centralization, both in specific territories and in a ruling elite of individuals, while it prepares a population for capitalist exploitation. Within anarchism, this subject has been treated extensively by Rudolf Rocker in Nationalism and Culture and by the works of Fredy Perlman, such as Against His-Story, Against Leviathan and "The Continuing Appeal of Nationalism".[3]

In his "Aphorisms on the Wisdom of Life", Arthur Schopenhauer rejected nationalism, seeing it as an abandonment of personal identity.[4] The philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche can also be seen as opposing all forms of nationalism, although he opposed virtually every other form of social movement and ideology as well.[5] Søren Kierkegaard's philosophy is a criticism and vehement rejection of Christian nationalism.[6]

Notable anti-nationalists and anti-nationalist parties

See also


  1. ^ Nationalism: A Critical Introduction by Philip Spencer and Howard Wollman, SAGE, 2002 (pgs. 8-9).
  2. ^ The Return of the National Question by Chris Harman, a Trotskyist analysis and critique of nationalism.
  3. ^ The Continuing Appeal of Nationalism by Fredy Perlman.Detroit, Black & Red Publishers, 1985.
  4. ^ The Morality of Nationalism, edited by Robert McKim and Jeff McMahan.Oxford University Press US, 1997 (pg. 121).
  5. ^ Feminist Interpretations of Friedrich Nietzsche edited by Kelly Oliver and Marilyn Pearsall. Penn State Press, 1998 (pg. 288)
  6. ^ Kierkegaard's Critique of Christian Nationalism, Stephen Backhouse. Oxford University Press, 2011 (pg. 2)
  7. ^ "Hannah Arendt as a Critic of Nationalism", in Liberalism, Nationalism, Citizenship: Essays on the problem of political community by Ronald Beiner. UBC Press, 2003, (pgs. 129-147)
  8. ^ "Ionesco was not a nationalist" (letter) by Emil Simiu, New York Review of Books, Dec. 23rd 2010 - Jan 12th, 2010, p. 102.
  9. ^ Landscapes of Hope: Anti-Colonial Utopianism in America by Dohra Ahmad. Oxford University Press, 2009 (pgs. 94-6)
  10. ^ "Veblen was against nationalism because it involves wasteful, honorific, and hence barbaric rituals, ceremonies, and related phenomena". Quoted in "Introduction" by Stjepan G. Mestrovic to Thorstein Veblen by David Riesman. Transaction Publishers, 1953 (pg. xvi)

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Nationalism — Part of a series on Nationalism …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-Europeanism — is hostility, opposition or discrimination directed towards the governments, culture or people of Europe.Anti Europeanism, which is distinct from Euroscepticism,cite web |url= |title= Anti… …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-Japanese sentiment in China — is an issue with modern roots (post 1868). Modern anti Japanese sentiment in China is often rooted in nationalist or historical conflict, particularly in Japan s textbook revisionism and censorship of the atrocities imperial Japan committed in… …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-Arabism — or Arabophobia is prejudice or hostility against people of Arabic origin. Anti Arabism is commonly associated with Islamophobia [ [,11374,1120849,00.html The Guardian: Islamophobia should be as unacceptable… …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-imperialism — Anti imperialism, strictly speaking, is a term that may be applied to or movement opposed to some form of imperialism. Generally, anti imperialism includes opposition to wars of conquest, particularly of non contiguous territory or people with a… …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-Catalanism — is the collective name given to various political attitudes, nowadays particularly in Spain, that oppose Catalanism. Hence, it can refer to a reaction against Catalan nationalism or, particularly, Catalan independentism. In a broader context, it… …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-Americanism — Anti American mural in Tehran, Iran, 2004 The term Anti Americanism, or Anti American Sentiment, refers to broad opposition or hostility to the people, policies, culture or government of the United States.[1] …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-globalization movement — Anti consumerism Ideas and theory Spectacle · Culture jamming · Corporate crime · Media bias · Buy Nothing Day · Alternative culture · Simple living · …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-German sentiment — (or Germanophobia) is defined as a fear or hatred of Germany, its people, and the German language. [cite book |last= |first= |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition |publisher=Houghton… …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-Protestantism — is an institutional, ideological or emotional bias against Protestantism and its followers. History Anti Protestantism originated in a reaction by the Catholic Church against the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century. Protestants were… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.