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New Left Review I/214, November-December 1995

Tom Nairn

Breakwaters of 2000: From Ethnic to Civic Nationalism

A considerable part of world opinion has grown convinced that the end of history has led to a return of ethnic nationalism. The return is mainly a threat, and a permanent one in the sense that few can see any general cure for the fragmentation or anarchy now supposed to prevail. Empires and imperiums have gone for good. Sinn féin is universalized, as all existing and potential national groupings fall back increasingly upon their own resources. No longer a liberating mission to throw off colonial control, nationalism becomes the general fate: the (menacing) new way of the world.

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Tom Nairn, ‘Breakwaters of 2000: From Ethnic to Civic Nationalism’, NLR I/214: £3

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