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Modern Peoplehood

Modern Peoplehood

John Lie

ISBN 9780674013278

Publication date: 07/27/2004

In modern states, John Lie argues, ideas of race, ethnicity, and nationality can be subsumed under the rubric of "peoplehood." He argues indeed, that the modern state has created the idea of peoplehood. That is, the seemingly primitive, atavistic feelings of belonging associated with ethnic, racial, and national identity are largely formed by the state. Not only is the state responsible for the development and nurturing of these feelings, it is also responsible for racial and ethnic conflict, even genocide. When citizens think of themselves in terms of their peoplehood identity, they will naturally locate the cause of all troubles--from neighborhood squabbles to wars--in racial, ethnic, or national attitudes and conflicts.

Far from being transhistorical and transcultural phenomena, race, ethnicity, and nation, Lie argues, are modern notions--modernity here associated with the rise of the modern state, the industrial economy, and Enlightenment ideas.

Praise

  • Modern Peoplehood is a most impressive achievement by an extraordinarily intelligent, courageous, and—that goes without saying—‘well-read’ mind. The scope of this work is enormous: it provides no less than a comprehensive historically-grounded theory of ‘modern peoplehood,’ which is Lie’s felicitous umbrella term for everything that goes under the names ‘race,’ ‘ethnicity,’ and ‘nationality.’

    —Christian Joppke, American Journal of Sociology

Author

  • John Lie is C. K. Cho Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Berkeley.

Book Details

  • 394 pages
  • 6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press

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