The future of the nation state: strengthen the local identity in order to create a global one.
I started to think on what a ”nation state” is. Searching for a definition, I’ve found the following:
“The nation state is a state that self-identifies as deriving its political legitimacy from serving as a sovereign territorial unity. The state is a political and geopolitical entity; the nation is a cultural and/or ethnic entity. The term nation-state implies that the two geographically coincide¹”.
So, how can we accuse the globalization to undermine the nation state’s destruction? In my opinion it is unthinkable and unrealistic.
A nation state is not only a territory delimited by boundaries which separate it from another territory; it includes people who lives in this space with their own language, culture, habits and traditions. Of course globalization’s process had involve and is still involving changes in the traditional conception of the nation state: if before people recognized themselves in the limited community where they lived in, always following the same ancestral morals and distrustful of the diversity, today every citizen unawares hasacquired a new global nationality and a more open mentality. Territorial boundaries, that in the past isolated nation states from each other, have collapsed. Movements from one territory to another are easier and almost totally devoid of restrictions. Information circulates free and government’s censorship on the freedom of speech is reduced to a very few cases. The process of globalization doesn’t mean the nation state’s end but its opening to the rest of the world. Obviously this “collectivist” atitude implies a delegation of power by each state towards higher commun entities, but you haven’t to see it like a state’s loss of power. Actual global problems require global solutions that a single state could not provide.
Furthermore, globalization and integration don’t mean homogenization. It is important to mantain the uniqueness of each state in the same way that is fundamental that every government has to ensure a strong internal reality in order to compete with others in a peaceful, productive and useful way.
“Citizens of the world” doesn’t imply that we can’t be at the same time citizen of our country.
We all live in the same planet and the world’s best care depends on the collaboration of all its citizens. But I believe that it’s important to improve different cultural identities to bring our own added value.
Nation state means identification and the definition of sense of belonging, fundamental for human beings that they won’t give up, with or without globalization.
Written for the Globalization’s class taught by Juan Llobell Buigues