West European Studies | Special Topics in West European Studies: European Nationalism: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
W405 | 11457 | Lary, J
1:30pm-2:20 Daily 3 cr. Meets with HIST B300.
So let's see, the Dutch eat cheese, the Germans wear lederhosen, the
Spanish watch bull fights, and the French eat baguettes, right?!....
Where do all these national identities come from, and are they
historically correct? Have nations always existed, or are they
constructed? And how to explain nationalism? Why is it that people
sometimes feel so inspired by their nation they want to devote all
their energies to it, even often being ready to die for it? Is
nationalism a positive or a negative aspiration?
This course will examine such questions by analyzing the history of
nationalism and natiuonal identities in Europe. We will start with
a brief overview of current theories of nationalism to frame our
historical analysis. Our geographic focus is continental Europe,
but we wll also have some discussions of its relationship to
neighboring regions such as North Africa. Temporally, we will move
from the French Revolution, all the way up to present-day debates
about ethnic conflict, immigration, and the European Union.
The course is team taught, and will be based on lectures, class
discussions, readings of primary and secondary sources, films, and
student presentations. The course is open to all, and may be of
special insterest to students in history, philosophy, public policy,
political theory or a European language.