Time to Dismantle the Myth of the Nation State? by Carol P. Christ


I am a citizen of two countries currently being torn apart by popular nationalism. In Greece, the cry is “Macedonia is only Greek,” while in the United States a nation of immigrants is being told that it must fear being invaded by immigrants. The truth is that the idea of a nation state is a fiction created in the nineteenth century. It is high time to dismantle it.

Here is the Greek case. Phillip of Macedon invaded from the north and created a federation of Greek states in 338 BCE. His son Alexander the (so-called) Great conquered territories extending as far as India before his death in 323 BCE, establishing the seat of his empire in the newly founded city of Alexandria in Egypt. Phillip and Alexander are claimed as Greek, but in fact Phillip forced independent Greek-speaking city states into union under his rule.

Although the Greek language became…

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