1st Edition

The Cultural Politics of Nationalism and Nation-Building Ritual and performance in the forging of nations

Edited By Rachel Tsang, Eric Taylor Woods Copyright 2014
    216 Pages 21 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    214 Pages 21 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Rituals and performances are a key theme in the study of nations and nationalism. With the aim of stimulating further research in this area, this book explores, debates and evaluates the role of rituals and performances in the emergence, persistence and transformation of nations, nationalisms and national identity.

    The chapters comprising this book investigate a diverse array of contemporary and historical phenomena relating to the symbolic life of nations, from the Yasukuni Shrine in Japan to the Louvre in France, written by an interdisciplinary cast of world-renowned and up-and-coming scholars. Each of the contributors has been encouraged to think about how his or her particular approach and methods relates to the others. This has given rise to several recurring debates and themes running through the book over how researchers ought to approach rituals and performances and how they might best be studied.

    The Cultural Politics of Nationalism and Nation-Building will appeal to students and scholars of ethnicity and nationalism, sociology, political science, anthropology, cultural studies, performance studies, art history and architecture.

    1. Ritual and performance in the study of nations and nationalism Eric Taylor Woods and Rachel Tsang  PART I: APPROACHES  2. The rites of nations: elites, masses and the re-enactment of the ‘national past’ Anthony D. Smith  3. National holiday commemorations: the view from below John E. Fox  4. Time-bubbles of nationalism: dynamics of solidarity ritual in lived time Randall Collins  5. Competition as ritual and the legitimation of the liberal nation-state Jonathan Hearn  PART II: APPLICATIONS  6. Ritual in the early Louvre Museum Carol Duncan  7. Inventing or reviving the Greek ideal? Forging the regeneration of the French nation in the art of Paul Cézanne after the Franco-Prussian War Athena S. Leoussi  8. The nation’s shrine": conflict and commemoration at Yasukuni, modern Japan’s shrine to the war dead John Breen  9. Collective Action and National Identity: The Rally to Restore Sanity Rachel D. Hutchins  10. Britons in Maoriland: narratives of identity during the 1901 Royal visit to New Zealand Christopher McDonald


    Rachel Tsang is an analyst for the UK Government. She received her Ph.D in Government from the London School of Economics, UK.

    Eric Taylor Woods is Lecturer in Sociology at the University of East London, UK, and Faculty Fellow of the Centre for Cultural Sociology at Yale University, USA.