Who knew the hottest new thing of the early 21st century would be something old: the nation state? Nationalism took on a foul odor in the 20th century, but since Brexit and Trump upset cosmopolitans from Berkeley to Brussels, the idea of nationalism has risen again in popularity, at least among many conservatives.
I have written mine short description on the subject a couple of years ago, but was delighted to spend some time talking to Samuel Goldman of George Washington University about his new book, After Nationalism: Being an American in an Age of Division. Sam offers three portals for thinking about the character of American nationalism, and ends up deciding roughly the same answer as me: that a sensible American nationalism is better anchored in the tenets of the country’s creed, including especially the Constitution and everything that has happened. in our constitutional traditions. Needless to say, this legacy is under massive attack today.
Sam is the executive director of the John L. Loeb, Jr. Institute for Religious Freedom and director of the Policy and Values Program at George Washington University. His first book, God’s Country: Christian Zionism in America, was published by the University of Pennsylvania Press in 2018. In addition to his academic research, Goldman is the literary editor of Modern Age: A Conservative Quarterly Magazine and contributing editor to The American Conservative. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall street journaland many other publications.
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