Nationalism and Conflict
Michael Ignatius: used one specific word ( we) , and he was mentioning US, and discussing US foreign policy he
was using the word We often. He was identifying Canadians as Americans. He was confusing his Canadian
identity, an not identifying himself as American, and he wasn't genuinely part of Canadian community.
1. Who is We?
2. How do we get to be We?
3. We don't exist naturally and they are constructions..
4. All specific words have to be socially constructed at some point. And they are real.
5. Most of conflicts in modern history happened between nations.
6. Slide one:
What is nationalism?
Seemingly obvious answer: the ideology of a nation. A nation is a group that wants to have its own state.
But things are not so simple
What is nation?
A group of people who believe they share a common fate, history , culture and language.
Nationalism says that the state and nation should be congruent.
7. Slide two
But this occurs only under modern conditions.
Never before in human history did people insist that their leaders be of the same culture and never did leaders try
to make the people share their culture.
This is modern phenomenon.
It is this need for congruence that needs to be explained.
8. Slide three:
Nationalism and Modernization
High culture and low culture: EU monarchs and populations
Industrial society and need for universalization of high culture.
In this way, nations are constructed, they are project of elites, sometimes competing projects. They don't exist as
things in themselves but are the product of aggregated individual beliefs.
But stakes are very high: if Your culture is not adopted as the high ( and universal ) culture , you face systematic
In industrial societies, states are service organization for providing common culture: education
Cases: Ukraine, Hungary, Slovakia
Seen this way, nations don't create nationalism: nationalism creates nations.
9. Slide Four:
Nationalism and Sequencing
Sate first, nation second : France and Britain- "National- Building"
Nation First, State Second : Germany and Italy
10. Slide Five:
Ethnic versus civic Nationalism
What is the basis of belonging: political or culture?
Ethnic belonging: based on history, language, blood.
Civic belonging: based on political allegiance.
Thin versus thick
United states should be called United Nations and United Nations should be called United States?
11. Slide Six:
Competition between these two principles
Canada: liberalism versus communitarianism ( individual versus group rights)
Canada: Multiculturalism ( is it real ?).
Genocide and Justice
Lecture #14 The institutional response to genocide has advanced further than any other international problem or issue in global
What is Genocide?
Genocide is a crime committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial, or religious
Genocide occurs by:
- Killing members of the group
- Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group
- Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction
- Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group
- Forcibly transferring children of one group to another group
Acts directed against political groups are not defined as genocide.
Intent is necessary to define an act as genocide. Killings occurring inadvertently as a result of something else are
Crimes Against Humanity
Crimes against humanity are described by the Charter of the International Military Tribunal as atrocities that
justify international criminal sanctions.
Some crimes against humanity are:
- inhumane acts committed against any civilian population before or during the war
War crimes are violations of the laws and customs of war. Some war crimes are:
- deportation for slave labor or for any other purpose of the civilian population of or in occupied territory
A truth commission is a temporary body created to serve justice to governments who committed crimes against
their own people.
- Often set up by the succeeding government.
- Investigates a pattern of gross human rights violations committed over a period of time in the past.
- Issues a public report which includes the testimony of victims for justice and reconciliation.
Reconciliation is the attempt to move past the atrocities committed by the previous government and their
consequences for the good of the community.
- The International Criminal Court was created solely to serve justice on cases of genocide, crimes against
humanity, and war crimes.
The problem with the application of both justice and reconciliation in truth commissions is that justice and
reconciliation conflict with each other; you cannot punish an offender and forgive them at the same time.
The mandate of the National Commission for Truth and Reconciliation:
- To describe how a repressive system worked, its roots, its methods and its consequences
- To account for every individual reported dead or disappeared
- To account for systematic practice of torture
- To account for the crimes committed by opposition groups
- To propose measures for reparation and prevention, in consultation with social, religious, and political
organizations, as well as the expertise of human rights organizations in Chile abroad. The Commission presented its report to the president, recommending:
- Pensions for the families of the dead and the disappeared
- Measures designed to commemorate the dead and honor the victims
- Legal, institutional, and educational reforms to enhance the promotion and protection of human rights
- The report did not name individual culprits
- It did declare whether the victimizer in any given case was an agent of the state or a member of an
International Criminal Tribunal
The UNSC created an International Criminal Tribunal in 1994. The purpose of this tribunal is:
- To bring to justice those persons presumed responsible for acts of genocide or other violations of
humanitarian law on Rwanda territory, and Rwandan citizens presumed responsible for such acts of violations
committed on the territory of neighboring states between 1 January and 31 December 1994.
- The principal purpose is justice, through prosecution and punishment to create a collective deterrent.
Universal Jurisdiction Laws
Universal jurisdiction laws were passed in many countries around the world following the Rwandan genocide by
governments who felt a sense of guilt for having watched and allowed the genocide to happen without
- The House of Lords ruled in 1999 that Pinochet, as a former head of state, could face prosecution for acts
of torture in relation to crimes committed after 1988, when the United Kingdom became a party to the U.N.
Convention against Torture.
The International Criminal Court
The ICC was established by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court in 1998.
It was established to promote the rule of law and ensure that the gravest international crimes do not go
It is composed of the Presidency; the Chambers; the Office of the Prosecutor; and the Registry. Eighteen judged
are permanent members of the court and are elected by secret ballot.
States Parties are obliged to fully cooperate with the Court in its investigations and prosecution of crimes under
How cases reach the ICC:
- A country member of the Assembly of States Parties sends the case
- A country that has chosen to accept the ICCs jurisdiction sends the case
- The Security Council sends the case
- The three-judge panel authorized a case initiated by the International Prosecutor
Weber: Protestant Ethic
Political scientists wonder why some countries are rich and others are poor. Examining religious differences is
one way to answer this question.
- Why does the West become rich first?
The West Becomes Rich
Explanation - Britain and the West became rich because they stole it.
- Imperialism: Explorers go across the ocean and steal wealth from the natives in the lands they find.
Question why didnt the Native Americans steal from the Europeans first?
- Answer: The Europeans were technologically superior. Native Americans simply did not have the
technology to sail across the ocean and conquer foreign lands.
Explanation The weather in Western Europe got warmer after the 15th century, allowing for booming
- Problem Why didnt warm areas like Hawaii get rich first?
Max Weber was a German sociologist whose intellectual power was greatest around the turn of the 20th century.
Weber noticed that the parts of Europe which became rich quickly were largely Protestant. - Weber was not the first to notice this; Karl Marx had observed this as well.
Early centers of capitalist development in the 16th century were strongly Protestant.
- A ready explanation of this was a break with economic traditionalism produced by a sloughing off of
tradition and of religious institutions.
Weber says that this explanation does not hold; there has to be another reason.
Weber says there is a relationship between Protestantism and capitalism.
Protestants, contrary to the ready expl