The book provides portraits of two kinds of nationalists: the tougher type, more common in everyday life, and the ultramoderate "liberal" or "thoughtful nationalist" encountered in academia. The author introduces a debate with the latter, who defends the view that states should be organized around national culture and that individuals have basic obligations to their nation. Miscevic laborates on the following questions: Why is radicalism typical of nationalism? How successful is the nation-state? Does nationalism support liberal-democratic values?
Professor Miscevi is a member of the Steering Committee of the European Society for Analytic Philosophy, of which he was president until 1999. He has lectured as invited professor at various universities including CREA in Paris, the Institute for International Studies in Geneva, the Institute of Federalism in Fribourg, as well as at the universities of Memphis, Graz (Austria) and Karlovy Vary (Czech Republic).
CONTENTS. Preface. Part One: Nationalism as a Political Program. Chapter One: Introduction; What the Debate is About; The Concept of 'Nation'. Chapter Two: Portraying Nationalism; A Rough Sketch; The Cosmopolitan View; Finessing the Portrait: Two Kinds of Nationalist. Chapter Three. Invidious Nationalism; Mythologies; Why is Radicalism Typical of Nationalism?. Chapter Four: The Even-Handed Nationalist: Summarizing the Argument; Introducing the Nationalist Interlocutor; Can Nationalist Claims Be Defended?. Chapter Five: The Right to Self-Determination; Introduction; Secession at Will; The Costs of Secession. Chapter Six: The Right to Self-Defense; Preventing and Redressing Injustices; The Limitations of Self-Defense. Chapter Seven: How Successful Is the Nation-State?; A Historical Success Story; Promises, Promises. Chapter Eight: Does Nationalism Support Liberal Democratic Values?; A Source of Democratic Energy; Equality, Democracy, and Freedom. Chapter Nine: Political Alternatives to Nationalism. Part Two: Identity, Culture, and Tradition. Chapter Ten: Nation and Culture. Chapter Eleven: The General Value of Culture; The Idea of Cultural Traditions; Replying to the Nationalist; What Is So Special about Ethno-National Traits?; Why the Nationalist Should Not Appeal to Cultural Proximity. Chapter Twelve: Human Flourishing and Understanding of Values; What the Nation Has to Offer; A Pluralist View of Traditions; Tradition and Convention; Can a Tradition Be Understood from the Outside?. Chapter Thirteen: National Tradition as a School of Morals; 'Thick' and 'Thin' Morality; Are There National Moralities?; Is Purity of Tradition a Virtue?. Chapter Fourteen: Is National Identity Essential for the Identity of Persons?; 'A Stable Nation Produces Stable Individuals'; Towards a Pluralism of Identities; A Misplaced Analogy; How Good Is the Nation at Providing Identities?. Chapter Fifteen: The Value of Diversity. Chapter Sixteen: The Anti-Cosmopolitan Argument. Chapter Seventeen: Recapitulation: Nationalism against Culture. Chapter Eighteen: Ultra-Moderate 'Nationalism'; The Shape of the Compromise; Does the Compromise Work?. Part Three: Conclusion. Chapter Nineteen: Why Nationalism Might Be Immoral. Chapter Twenty: Pluralistic Cosmopolitanism; An Alternative to Nationalism; From Cultural to Political Pluralism; The Value of Autonomy: Self-Determination, Flourishing, and Identity; The Value of Benevolent Impartiality; The Value of Unconstrained Creativity. Bibliography