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Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism (1983)

by Benedict Anderson

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2,703233,744 (4.02)17
Anderson's essay shows how the European processes of inventing nationalism were transported to the Third World through colonialism and were adapted by subject races in Latin America and Asia.
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Showing 1-5 of 22 (next | show all)
An absolutely breathtaking work of world-historical scholarship. The artificiality of the "nation" is really brought home here, and so too is the nebulous nature of precolonial politics and societies. Read this, no matter what. ( )
  goliathonline | Jul 7, 2020 |
Lots of detail, well argued and well defended. Maybe too much detail for me. I'd happily have read the cliffsnotes version. But overall interesting and happy to have encountered it. It helped undo some of my (unfounded, yet likely widespread) notions about the inevitability and timelessness of nations and nationalism. (They're relatively modern phenomena despite efforts to historically legitimize their present existence.) I haven't been a fan of nationalism for a while- this book further bolsters that dislike and provides more tools for putting it in context and critiquing it. The (argued) links between the rise of nationalism and church languages as well as print media were interesting.

I really ought to have taken notes along the way since the bounty of detail sometimes distracted me from the broader points it was trying to make. ( )
  reg_lt | Feb 7, 2020 |
Very interesting and difficult book about how we conceive Nationalism. I honestly wouldn't have been able to make it through without the context and guidance of my post-colonial lit. class. If you're up for it, though, Anderson's writing style is clear and engaging though the concepts are at times subtle and complex. ( )
  Adrian_Astur_Alvarez | Dec 3, 2019 |
Very interesting and difficult book about how we conceive Nationalism. I honestly wouldn't have been able to make it through without the context and guidance of my post-colonial lit. class. If you're up for it, though, Anderson's writing style is clear and engaging though the concepts are at times subtle and complex. ( )
  Adrian_Astur_Alvarez | Dec 3, 2019 |
這個版本收錄2006年Verso新版所增加的一篇〈旅行與交通〉(採用​2007新刷版),描述這本書的翻譯與流佈,也簡短談到作者寫這本書的動機。另外在附錄新增三篇文章:​2003年作者欲來台演講的講稿〈帝國/台灣〉、因故未能成行而發表的〈曼谷遙寄〉、譯者吳叡人關於本書與作者的〈​黑暗之時.光明之時〉。封面令人費解,有否可能是作者對吳叡人的叮嚀「要打擊帝國,你得要好好瞄準,然後一​ ( )
  maoozilla | Apr 2, 2019 |
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For Mamma and Taniette in love and gratitude.
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Perhaps without being much noticed yet, a fundamental transformation in the history of Marxism and Marxist movements is upon us.
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Anderson's essay shows how the European processes of inventing nationalism were transported to the Third World through colonialism and were adapted by subject races in Latin America and Asia.

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The full magnitude of Benedict Anderson’s intellectual achievement is still being appreciated and debated. Imagined Communities remains the most influential book on the origins of nationalism, filling the vacuum that previously existed in the traditions of Western thought. Cited more often than any other single English-language work in the human sciences, it is read around the world in more than thirty translations.Written with exemplary clarity, this illuminating study traces the emergence of community as an idea to South America, rather than to nineteenth-century Europe. Later, this sense of belonging was formed and reformulated at every level, from high politics to popular culture, through print, literature, maps and museums. Following the rise and conflict of nations and the decline of empires, Anderson draws on examples from South East Asia, Latin America and Europe’s recent past to show how nationalism shaped the modern world. (Publisher: Verso Books)
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