Nationalism: Different Types

Nationalism: Different Types

Liberal Nationalism

  • This form of nationalism champions the values of freedom, tolerance, equality, and individual rights.
  • It holds that the nation state is important for the protection and flourishing of individual liberties and so, should be founded on a populace with shared values and cultural features.
  • Liberal nationalism emerged as a response to oppressive monarchies in 18th and 19th centuries and was a potent force behind major events like the French Revolution and the unification of Italy and Germany.

Conservative Nationalism

  • Conservative nationalism is steeped in preserving tradition and a sense of continuity with the past.
  • It asserts that a shared history, language and culture are essential elements in maintaining national unity and cohesion.
  • Conservative nationalists often warn against rapid societal changes, fearing that it may damage the fabric of the national community.

Expansionist Nationalism

  • Also known as aggressive nationalism, expansionist nationalism advocates the growth of the nation through acquisition of territory.
  • It can lead to the militarization of a country, with emphasis on national security and defence.
  • Expansionist nationalism was a key factor leading to both World Wars due to the aspirations of Germany, Italy and Japan.

Cultural Nationalism

  • Cultural nationalism prioritises the promotion and celebration of national cultural identity, including language, traditions, and customs.
  • Cultural nationalists believe in the necessity of a shared cultural background to create and maintain a successful nation state.
  • The Celtic Revival in Ireland during the late 19th and early 20th century is an example of cultural nationalism, where traditional Irish language, music, and folklore were promoted to foster Irish nationalism.

Post-colonial Nationalism

  • This form of nationalism emerged in countries seeking to establish their own identity and structures post foreign rule.
  • It often involves a rejection of the influences and impositions of the colonial power and a reclaiming of the nation’s history, culture, and resources.
  • India’s struggles for independence from British rule in the 20th century are an example of post-colonial nationalism.