[tied] Re: Scientific Nationalism?

From: Piotr Gasiorowski
Message: 9076
Date: 2001-09-06

If B can be considered a step in the evolution of A, it doesn't
follow that A is (incipient) B, especially if quantitative and
qualitative differences are involved. A tribe of fifty or two hundred
people with a minimum of social organisation, who practise a
transhumant economy, whose "wars" are mostly cattle-rustling
escapades or skirmishes about grazing rights, and whose "kings" are
village chieftains, is something radically different from a nation of
ten million people or more, with a fixed territory, a strong and
permanently organised central power, and an infinitely complex
structure of institutions and social relations. As I said, tribal
traditions and attitudes may live on in nationalist ideologies (which
exploit and manipulate such historical heritage to great effect), but
should not be confused with them. You can, for example select the
Bharata clan (one of many similar units in Rigvedic times, all of
them equally "Aryan") as a symbol of modern Hindu unity, but that's
an arbitrary rhetorical manipulation, since modern India did not
descend lineally from the Bharatas' tribal organisation.


--- In cybalist@..., "S.Kalyanaraman" <kalyan97@...> wrote:

> I do not understand this.
> How does the modern idea of a 'nation' differ from the idea of
> a 'territorial organisation' of R.gveda? Isn't the latter an
> insipient idea which evolves into the concept of a 'cultural
> identity' within a territory, with passports, visas, border guards
> and what not?
> The point I want to make is that the 'nation' is not a 17th century
> construct; it is an evolved entity from what you call 'tribal'
> organisation. I don't see much difference, for example, from
> the 'tribal' organisation of R.gveda and the 'tribal' organisation
> of, say, Balkans or Central Asia of today after the collapse of