Ethnicity' and 'nationalism’ are matters of contemporary urgency (as we are daily reminded by the media), but while the meanings of these terms are taken for granted, what actually constitutes ethnicity and nationalism, and how they have been historically constituted, is neither clear nor self-evident. This module begins with a consideration of the major theories of nationalism and ethnicity, and then moves on to a series of case studies taken from various societies around the world., and then moves on to examine a number of other important concepts—indigeneity, ‘race’, hybridity, authenticity, ‘invention of tradition’, multiculturalism, globalization—that can help us appreciate the complexity and dynamics of ethnic identities. The general aim of the module is to enable and encourage students to think critically beyond established, homogenous and static ethnic categories.
22 contact hours
128 study hours
Total: 150 hours
BA Social Anthropology; BSc Anthropology: Joint Honours; with a language; with a year abroad.
Method of assessment
Examination (2hours) (50%)
Essay, 2000 words (50%)
NB Both assessments must be passed in order to successfully complete the module
Anderson, B. 1991. Imagined Communities.
Banks, M. 1996. Ethnicity: Anthropological Constructions.
Comaroff John and Jean Comaroff. 2009. Ethnicity, Inc.
Gellner, E. 1983. Nations and Nationalism.
Hobsbawm, E. and T. Ranger (eds) 1983. The Invention of Tradition.
Hutchinson, J. and Smith, A. 1994. Nationalism (Oxford Readers).
Hylland-Erikssen, T. 1993. Ethnicity and Nationalism.
Jenkins, R. 1997. Rethinking Ethnicity: Arguments and Explorations.
Smith, A. 1986. The Ethnic Origin of Nations.
Wade, P. 1997. Race and ethnicity in Latin America.
See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
8.1 Demonstrate a critical understanding of the ways in which the related phenomena of nationalism and ethnicity have been historically constructed since the eighteenth century, and to be able to question their taken-for-granted status in the modern world.
8.2 Critically assess concepts related to ethnicity and the categorisation of difference, such as indigeneity, hybridity, authenticity, invention of tradition and race.
8.3 Consider the ways in which ethnicity and nationalism are being transformed as a result of migration and globalisation.
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Credit level 6. Higher level module usually taken in Stage 3 of an undergraduate degree.
- ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
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