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Nation-building in the Post-Soviet Borderlands

Nation-building in the Post-Soviet Borderlands
The Politics of National Identities


  • Date Published: September 1998
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521599689

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About the Authors
  • This book examines how national and ethnic identities are being reforged in the post-Soviet borderland states. The first chapter provides a conceptual and theoretical context for examining national identities, drawing in particular upon post-colonial theory. The rest of the book is divided into three parts. In Part I, the authors examine how national histories of the borderland states are being rewritten especially in relation to new nationalising historiographies, around myths of origin, homeland, and descent. Part II explores the ethnopolitics of group boundary construction and how such a politics has led to nationalising policies of both exclusion and inclusion. Part III examines the relationship between nation-building and language, especially with regard to how competing conceptions of national identity have informed the thinking of both political decision-takers and nationalising intellectuals, and the consequences for ethnic minorities. Such perspectives on nation-building are illustrated with substantive studies drawn from the Baltic states, Ukraine, and Belarus, Transcaucasia, and Central Asia.

    • Co-author study of national identity and ethnicity in the post-Soviet states bordering Russia
    • Based on extensive field research, and uses theories of post-colonialism and discourse analysis, as well as political sociology
    • Should be of interest to people working on theories of nationalism and identity, as well as area studies and politics
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… this book brings together several important aspects of nationalizing regimes, specifically the politics of history, social boundaries, and language … this book is a breath of fresh air in the study of nationalities in the post-Soviet states. Consequently Nation-building in the Post-Soviet Borderlands is an important addition to the post-Soviet bookshelf.' Slavonic and East European Review

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 1998
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521599689
    • length: 308 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.46kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus. 7 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Post-colonialism and borderland identities
    Part I. Rediscovering National Histories:
    2. National history and national identity in Ukraine and Belarus
    3. National identity and myths of ethnogenesis in Transcaucasia
    4. History and group identity in Central Asia
    Part II. Ethnopolitics and the Construction of Group Boundaries:
    5. Nation re-building and political discourses of identity politics in the Baltic states
    6. Redefining ethnic and linguistic boundaries in Ukraine: indigenes, settlers and Russophone Ukrainians
    7. The Central Asian states as nationalising regimes
    Part III. Language and Nation-Building:
    8. Language myths and the discourse of nation-building in Georgia
    9. Language policy and ethnic relations in Uzbekistan.

  • Authors

    Graham Smith, University of Cambridge

    Vivien Law, University of Cambridge

    Andrew Wilson, University of London

    Annette Bohr, Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge

    Edward Allworth, Columbia University, New York

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