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WHAT IS A NATION?

January 12, 2018

An updated version of What Is A Nation?

ON COPTIC NATIONALISM في القومية القبطية

A buffalo herd: they instinctively herd together

Nations and national feelings are not new – they are at least as old as history. The ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Persians and Hebrews, to take but a few, knew they were nations[1] having come to a consciousness of their unique selves at different points of history – they were proud of themselves and their achievements and heritage; and, in the process of defending themselves, or fighting, against other peoples, whom they called foreigners, barbarians, or gentiles, and who threatened either their existence or way of life, they came to define themselves not only by the innate features of themselves, but also by how much they differed from others.

What is new, however, is the modern social theorists who have made it their habit studying peoples and what they call the objective criteria of nationhood, by which they mean certain characteristics the absence of…

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