Grosby 1/2007

Sociologie Românească, Vol. V, no. 1/2007, pp. 44-52.




Nationality and Philosophy. Some Preliminary Observations


Steven Grosby


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Abstract: The protean quality of nationality - the variability of its historical expressions - poses methodological and philosophical problems that likely account for much of the scholarly dispute over what and when is the nation. The primary difficulty is coming to terms with the centrality of meaning in the constitution of human associations which, in turn, poses difficulties for the historical, sociological and anthropological investigation of collective self-consciousness, requiring its own analytical approaches. Those approaches to the meaning born by symbols include renewed attention to representation, territory, and myth.