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By Wayne Norman

In an international with at the least thrice as many countries as states, what are the boundaries of valid nation-building? How can nationwide self-determination be coordinated inside a federal procedure? This ebook offers essentially the most vast discussions so far at the ethics of nation-building and the character and justification of federal structures.

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Additional resources for Negotiating Nationalism: Nation-Building, Federalism, and Secession in the Multinational State

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Throughout these chapters I will refer to some powerful general liberal, democratic, and federalist principles as these are used without much controversy in ‘uninational’ states. They will be modiWed as necessary—and in particular, with principles of mutual recognition—for the multinational state. The remainder of this chapter is devoted to spelling out a range of issues for a liberal theory of nationalism; to put it more accurately, to recall the chapter title for a liberal trying to think through nationalism.

Immigration. The government of British Columbia, an anglophone province on the PaciWc coast, could demand some administrative control over immigration on the grounds that it has to cope with special issues—a very large inXux of Chinese-speaking immigrants who are, among other things, accounting for over half of the students in some school districts—and that it is in a better position than the authorities in Ottawa, 5,000 km away, to deal eVectively and fairly with this challenge. Note that this demand can be made on entirely liberal-democratic grounds: that justice would be better served if those most aVected by and knowledgeable about a problem were the ones entrusted to deal with it.

On the Gellnerian demand that the national and political units become congruent). Again, in a nationalist political culture, virtually any political issue (even issues such as health care or the eradication of rabies) can become imbued with nationalist meaning and value. Almost any issue can be used to shape or reinforce a national identity, evoke national sentiments, or mobilize nationalist opinion. 9 Consider the following partly hypothetical illustration. Roughly speaking, all provinces in the Canadian federation have the same legislative and administrative competencies.

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