Nation-building through discourse theory

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84 Citations (Scopus)


The article sets out to demonstrate the value of discourse theory for studying nationalism as an ideology. It looks at the debate surrounding the concept of discourse and its manifold meanings before examining Laclau and Mouffe's discourse theory, with particular reference to the concept of hegemony and the influence of Gramsci on their work. This leads to a discussion of the relevance of discourse theory to a study of nationalist ideology, especially the antagonistic dynamic between nation‐state and minority nationalisms. Not only does discourse theory serve to embed the omnipresence of ideology within a useful hierarchy of mega and micro discourse, but it also provides a conceptual toolbox for analysing nationalist ideology at the empirical level.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)185-202
JournalNations and Nationalism
Issue number2
Early online date29 Mar 2005
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2005


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