Prone to Violence FROM THE French Revolution to contemporary Iraq, the beginning phase of democratization in unsettled circumstances has often spurred a rise in militant nationalism. Democracy means rule by the people, but when territorial control and popular loyalties are in flux, a prior question has to be settled: Which people will form the nation? Nationalist politicians vie for popular support to answer that question in a way that suits their purposes. When groups are at loggerheads and the rules guiding domestic politics are unclear, the answer is more often based on a test of force and political manipulation than on democratic procedures.
posted by Postroad
on Jan 7, 2006 -
War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning The AC130 video thread yesterday got me interested in this book. The author - a veteran New York Times war correspondent - argues that, to many people, war provides a purpose for living; allowing individuals to rise above regular life and participate in a noble cause. He discusses nationalism, the wartime silencing of intellectuals and artists, the ways in which even a supposedly skeptical press glorifies the battlefield and other universal features of war, arguing not for pacifism but for responsibility and humility on the part of those who wage war.
posted by Zombie
on Dec 18, 2002 -