Isbn-10: 1844670864 | Isbn-13: 9781844670864 | Publish date: 16/11/2006 | Edition Revised
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jy1218 said on Jul 01, 2014, 15:31
Eric von Schwein said on Dec 04, 2012, 17:04
011 said on Dec 22, 2011, 17:09
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ZoeL said on Jul 27, 2011, 06:05
Rex Tsai said on May 02, 2011, 08:09
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This seminal text about nationalism, first published in 1983, seems particularly useful today, when new forms of nation-ness can be perceived in a muting world balance. Anderson sets the origin of the idea of nation in the Middle Ages, when some languages ceased to constitute the privileged access to the truth, the idea that communities were ruled by élites endowed with divine powers faded away and a new historical consciousness began to emerge. All these factors are unavoidably intertwined with the emergence of what Anderson calls “print-languages”, some selected groups of vernaculars which became official and assumed a status of power in relation with other sub-standard varieties. The role of language in constituting the idea of nation is emphasized throughout the book, especially when Anderson discusses the relationship between native languages and imperial languages in colonized territories, in particular referring to the South-East Asian territories. It immediately reminded me of another good read, “Empires of the Word” by Nicholas Ostler (2005, Harper&Collins). Anderson coined the expression “imagined communities” which resumes the whole meaning of his book: nations are historical products, the constructs of collective imaginations triggered by a convergence of historical events. As any articulate thought about nationalism suggests, it always important to reflect upon the value sometimes attributed to these historical constructs. Are really worth sacrifice? Blood? Anderson does not give any answer, on the contrary, trying to be as scientific as possible, he aims at analyzing the existent, which is that “it is useful to remind ourselves that nations inspire love, and often profoundly self-sacrificing love. The cultural products of nationalism - poetry, prose fiction, music, plastic arts - show this love very clearly in thousands of different forms and styles” (141). As this year Italy is celebrating its 150th anniversary as a nation, this book seems more apt than ever. In the song festival “Sanremo” the Italian actor Roberto Benigni exalted the patriots who died for the Italian flag during the Risorgimento. He highlighted their youngness, their limitless love for this “idea” which was only in their head yet. And he chose to interpret one of these young soldiers who, going home at dusk, tired of the daylong fighting and aware that he is risking his own life every day for an idea/ideal, first mutters and then sings “Fratelli d’Italia”, that will become the Italian national anthem a short time afterwards. What does Anderson say about anthems? “The image: unisonance. Singing the Marseillaise, the Waltzing Matilda, the Indonesian Raya provide occasion for unisonality, for the echoed physical realization of the imagined community” (145). What do I say? I must confess: I was nearly crying when he sang it. I am not sure I feel nationalist, much of what I intellectually like goes in the opposite direction, but I can not deny that I miss my country when I am abroad and that I “feel” something towards it. This constitutes evidence that the imagined community is real in our heads and our hearts, no matter how much we try to suffocate it rationally. This does not mean it should exist, I am only testifying.
Volpesaggia said on Feb 25, 2011, 16:00
A classic analysis of nationalism, thought-provoking and convincingly argued. Essentially nations are imagined and nations are thus defined by the way in which they are imagined. For there is an imagined linkage perceived as shared among its members although they do not necessarily know each and every one of them in person. Time, language and class also play a part. Anyone who is interested enough to be bothered by a faint taint of question of the clique of nationalism should take at least a decent look at this book. You may not agree with all the arguments the author presents, but at least it should prompt you to think deeper and ask more "why".
秋盈 said on Dec 29, 2010, 11:44
想像的共同體這個書的名字真是他媽的無比貼切。 霍布斯邦民族國家與民族主義去探討民族的形成， 講好聽一點就是「想像的共同體」 （講難聽一點就是你爸覺得我是什麼就是什麼，你爸覺得不是什麼就不是什麼） 所以所謂的台灣人就要講台灣話（或是講台灣話就是台灣人）是不一定的 更甚者，王明軻的華夏邊緣則是中國所謂的「華夏形成」的探討。
對於想像的共同體的文化認同、或是驕傲 （微管仲，吾其被髮左衽矣） （台灣人對於日治時代的認同和響往） （榮民對日本侵華的集體共同記憶） 對於共同利益階級的形成
而且都會去或多或少抵毀想像中敵對的民族 而且殘忍的提到 如果是一般吃不飽的人，根本不會去想這種問題 對民族意識跟本不會有這樣的思考
對比台灣而言。台灣主體意識的興起 （還不是黨外喔，因為有些黨外是大中國主義的XD） 一開始也就是所謂的知識份子和資產階級的 所以民進黨走這條路線也很正確 只是太早於非我族類其心必誅了 導致推開了很多本來應該會被吸引的人
而對比之下，台灣正在走到華夏的邊緣 所以台灣的「羌人」就愈來愈少了 （我指的台灣羌人是指在中國和台灣意識之間模糊的，對比華夏邊緣 就是所謂的漢藏之間）
mark said on Nov 18, 2010, 02:18
凹腦袋 said on Sep 25, 2010, 13:56
冰雹 said on Aug 17, 2010, 14:20