Living in London now, in an environment where Asian (and in this case East Asian) culture is peripheral, I am hungry to see or hear representations of almost any kind, and am unbothered in my rampant consumption of Japanese cultural products. But growing up in Singapore as an ethnic Chinese, I felt conflicted about the widespread popularity of Japanese films and books.
We asked some people in London one disarmingly simple question: what makes you think you’re British? Philosopher Ernest Renan said that “a nation’s existence is… a daily plebiscite”.
Much is said about President Vladimir Putin’s international strategy and tactics, from cyber attacks and information warfare to domestic repression and a campaign of international irredentism to distract from a dismal economy at home.
On October 3rd the King of Spain Felipe VI addressed all Spaniards on the issue of Catalonia in a six minute discourse.
The Ethno-nationalist party in Greece, Golden Dawn, differs little from what history has presented to us as ethno-nationalist. Its beliefs are extremely radical and not compatible with a liberal western society.
To some extent, Indian political history can be seen as a conflict between two rival nationalist traditions. Aditya Nath’s BJP stands for a particular strand of Indian nationalism, Hindutva, which deliberately politicises Hindu identity to impose a vision of Indian nationality defined by Hinduism.
Spain has been plunged into political turmoil after Rajoy decided to deploy violence in order to stop the illegal referendum of Catalonia. Media platforms are going haywire as images of violent abuse reach their headquarters.
With the upcoming governorship elections in Anambra State on November 18th, the unsolved ‘Biafra question’ is re-emerging in the international debate.
When a state consists of multiple ethnic groups, it is often difficult to appease everyone under the rule of a person or party representing a single identity. This is where identity politics, usually drenched in nationalism, often comes into play.