By Wilber W. Caldwell
While does nationwide delight go the invisible boundary that separates benign patriotism and malignant nationalism? Nationalism isn't exact to the USA: it was once invented with the beginning of recent countries. yet nationalism is exclusive in the USA. american citizens conceive themselves and their state to be incontrovertibly more advantageous to the opposite peoples and international locations of the earth. traditionally, American notions of superiority spring from myths of the original regenerative strength of the hot land; from visions of chosen-ness, undertaking and excessive future; from the indelible legends of frontier self-sufficiency; from the arrogance and self-reliance had to be triumphant as immigrants; from a robust experience of America's isolation and area of expertise; from the belief of abundance; and eventually from the perceived universality of yank ideology. This predisposes us to a distinctively virulent pressure of nationalism in contrast to that present in virtually the other sleek state. because the unipolar second fades into reminiscence, this feeling of unquestionable superiority - expressed via politics and overseas coverage - doesn't play good earlier than the worldwide viewers. in truth, it by no means did. In the US this present day, notions of nationwide superiority are way more deeply ingrained and much extra very likely ruinous than so much people think. it is a trip that slides from cause to emotion, from person liberty to mass tyranny, and from humanity to inhumanity. Drawing on resources from in the educational disciplines of historical past, sociology, political technological know-how and overseas affairs, the writer seeks to decode scholarly jargon and lay naked this nook of the yankee brain. * Wilber W. Caldwell is the writer of numerous books of social statement that examine American society via a number of lenses together with historical past, structure, nutrition and philosophy. prior titles contain The Courthouse and the Depot: The structure of desire in an Age of melancholy, a examine of railroad growth and its impression on public structure within the rural South 1833-1910; trying to find the Dixie fish fry: trips into the Southern Psyche, a funny examine the area of barbeque and modern rural Southern tradition; and Cynicism and the Evolution of the yankee Dream. A photographer in addition to a author, he lives within the mountains of northern Georgia.
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Extra info for American Narcissism: The Myth of National Superiority (HC)
Buadet, Paradise of Earth, 55. 92. Marx, Machine in the Garden, 228. 93. Marx, Machine in the Garden, 39-40. 94. Greene, Intellectual Construction of America, 25. ” Standing “face to face for the last time in history with something commensurate with … [its] capacity for wonder,”98 the European mind was dazzled. Suddenly the appearance of two great, unspoiled continents gave rise to the possibility that “mankind might actually realize what had been thought a poetic fantasy. 100 Like the primal myth of the hero’s journey, the new American myth held that the source of this rebirth and of “special virtue” was to be found in the land itself, in “access to undefiled, bountiful, sublime Nature….
IDEOLOGY AND INFLEXIBILITY Despite the excellence of American ideals and despite their perceived, broadly humanitarian, universal relevance, there are inherent problems with a nation based on ideology alone. If an ideology is the glue that holds the nation together and the foundation for its society, government, and economy, then ideology is in fact the single key to political and social stability. Thus, the nation will always endeavor to vigorously protect her chosen ideology and reject all others in order to maintain national unity and stability.
101. Marx, Machine in the Garden, 228. 102. Marx, Machine in the Garden, 39. 103. Marx, Machine in the Garden, 68. ”104 The American landscape meant regeneration to the European peasant. It offered a simple man a chance he could not have known in Europe. ’” 105 As more settlers arrived and put the virgin soil to the plow, the symbolically embellished myth of rebirth evolved to encompass the myth of the garden. This idea is still deeply embedded in the American psyche. “The image of this vast and constantly growing agricultural society … became … a collective representation, a poetic idea … that defined the promise of American life.
American Narcissism: The Myth of National Superiority (HC) by Wilber W. Caldwell