The Journal of Libertarian Studies

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Nationalism and Liberalism: Friends or Foes?

The Journal of Libertarian Studies

Tags Other Schools of ThoughtPhilosophy and MethodologySubjectivism

07/30/2014David Conway

What should be the attitude of classical liberals toward nationalist aspiration and sentiment? Should classical liberals value and cultivate these attitudes in themselves and others—at least in their ostensibly less xenophobic and aggressive forms? Or should they look on all forms and manifestations of nationalism as nothing more than atavistic remnants of pre-modernity? That is, should nationalism be viewed as an outmoded form of attachment which, ideally, should be expunged from humanity? Should it be replaced by a cosmopolitan individualism the universal adoption of which will mark the liberation of humanity from all divisive partial allegiances and attachments? Alternatively, should classical liberals regard nationalist sentiment and allegiance as a purely private matter, one that has nothing to do with their political outlook as such?

Volume 16, Number 1 (2002)


David Conway

David Conway is a professor of philosophy in the School of Humanity and Cultural Studies at Middlesex University in London England.

Cite This Article

Conway, David. "Nationalism and Liberalism: Friends or Foes?." Journal of Libertarian Studies 16, No. 1 (2002): 1–22.