1st Edition

Multinationalism and Covid-19

Edited By André Lecours, Stephanie Kerr Copyright 2023

    Using the developments in key multinational states, including the United Kingdom, Spain, Belgium, and the United States, this book explores both the impact of the pandemic on nationalism and the broader multinational state as well as the significance of multinationalism for the response to the pandemic.

    Exogenous forces have the potential to significantly impact the shape and dynamics of multinational democracies. The Covid-19 pandemic is one such powerful exogenous force. The chapters in this edited volume, therefore, investigate the following questions: (1) How has multinationalism shaped the response to the crisis? (2) How has the crisis affected the self-determination objectives and strategies of the nationalist movement? (3) Have national divides (as observed, for example, in public opinion and in statements from politicians) become more or less salient during, and as a result of, the crisis? (4) What issues have produced tensions between national communities, or between minority nations and the state? (5) What governments, parties, or individual politicians have most gained or lost from the crisis in terms of putting forward or managing self-determination claims? (6) What could be the impact of the crisis on the nationalist movement and on the multinational state as a whole?

    The book will be essential reading for academics, researchers, and policy-makers of political science interested in the fields of federal theory, multinationalism, minorities and natural disasters. This book was originally published as a special issue of Nationalism and Ethnic Politics and is accompanied by a new concluding chapter.

    Introduction: Multinationalism and the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Framework for Analysis

    André Lecours and Stephanie Kerr

    1. Multinationalism in the Spanish Territorial Debate during the COVID-19 Crisis. The Case of Catalonia and Intergovernmental Relations

    Marc Sanjaume-Calvet and Mireia Grau Creus

    2. Multinationalism, Constitutional Asymmetry and COVID: UK Responses to the Pandemic

    Karlo Basta and Ailsa Henderson

    3. Nationalism and COVID in Belgium: A Surprisingly United Response in a Divided Federal Country

    Dave Sinardet and Jade Pieters

    4. Trumpist Ethnonationalism and the Federal Response to the COVID-19 Crisis and Other Natural Disasters in Puerto Rico (2017–21)

    Jaime Lluch

    Conclusion: Looking Forward: Multinationalism and Responses to Covid-19

    Stephanie Kerr


    André Lecours is Professor in the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa, Canada. His main research interests are nationalism and federalism. His most recent book is Nationalism, Secessionism, and Autonomy.

    Stephanie Kerr is Assistant Professor at the University of Lethbridge’s Department of Political Science. Her research specialization focuses primarily on nationalism, political violence, and multi-level governance, with a regional focus on Western Europe and Latin America.