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The Lefts and Nationalisms

Participation
Political theory
EDI01
Tudi Kernalegenn
Université catholique de Louvain
Emmanuel Dalle Mulle
University of Geneva

Building: 50 George Square, Floor: G, Room: G.06

Tuesday 09:00 - 17:00 (19/04/2022)

Wednesday 09:00 - 17:00 (20/04/2022)

Thursday 09:00 - 17:00 (21/04/2022)

Friday 09:00 - 17:00 (22/04/2022)


The aim of this workshop is to provide new perspectives on the relation between the Left(s) and nationalism(s). We understand both concepts as being plural and consider this diversity as an object of enquiry. The workshop will thus look with a non-normative eye at the tension between the universality shared (or claimed) by different left-wing traditions, intellectuals and parties, and the particularism inherent in nationalism as a doctrine and a principle of political legitimacy. The workshop will also simultaneously analyse the cultural, economic, social and political aspects of this tension (and their inter-relation). Whereas nationalism, and its product, the modern nation, could be said to be born on the Left at the end of the 18th century, the Left later came to be semantically associated with internationalism. Simultaneously, the Right, or even the extreme-right, acquired a near monopoly over nationalism. As a consequence, contemporary dominant left-wing ideologies have tended to neglect the national issue. The literature on nationalism(s) and the Left(s) is rich, but with problematic blind spots. Six major limitations can be singled out. First, it tends to conceive of the Left in a monolithic way and to focus on disputes of Marxist doctrine over the practice of specific parties and movements. Additionally, it tends to neglect the non-Marxist Left (Republicans, Greens…). Second, it too often lacks a comparative dimension considering several cases from different countries and geographical areas. Third, it focuses often too much on ideologies, with a top-down perspective, and not enough on how on the field activists and citizens deal with such topics. The literature is too much dominated by political theory and political history, and not enough by political sociology. Fourth, case studies have mostly focused on either cultural (relating to the management of cultural difference) or socio-economic (regarding the welfare state) issues, rather than to offer an integrative approach taking both dimensions into consideration. Fifth, with regard to Western Europe, there seems to be a need to study how social democracy has handled problems relating to nationalism, as well as used national identity to obtain popular support. Sixth, too many (left-wing) scholars have externalized nationalism as ‘the ideology of someone else’ forgetting in the process their own banal nationalism, their own ideology of the nation. The conveners notably encourage the participants to look at the three following broad axes of research (and how they engage with each other): - The cultural and the socio-economic dimensions of left-wing ideology and policy (as mentioned above, the former centres primarily around the management of diversity, while the latter around the welfare state). - Whether the most relevant national cleavage is internal to the state (as in the case of minorities) or external (as in the case of foreign migrants). - When, where, why, for what and with whom do left wing organisations, movements and individuals frame their reflection with a national(ist) perspective? We invite researchers interested in applying to contact the directors of the workshop (at tudi.kernalegenn@uclouvain.be or emmanuel.dallemulle@graduateinstitute.ch) beforehand to discuss their submission

The workshop will thus aim to fill the above gaps by collecting and discussing the following types of contributions: - Theoretical contributions on different forms of nationalisms (civic/ethnic; centripetal/centrifugal; hot/banal etc.) and the lefts (Republicans, social-democrats, communists, greens…) that emphasise the existence of different traditions. We will especially appreciate contributions analysing ideologies with a sociological and bottom-up perspective, at a grass-roots level. - Socio-historical analyses (comparative or based on single cases) of specific parties and movements dealing with issues of national identity and using (explicitly or not, in an accepted way or not) nationalist language as a tool of political legitimation. - Contemporary studies of left-wing policies towards managing cultural difference (both towards minorities and foreign immigrants) as well as the welfare state. The conveners will notably encourage the participants to look at the three following broad axes of research (and how they combine together): - The cultural and the socio-economic dimensions of left-wing ideology and policy (as mentioned above, the former centres around the management of diversity, while the latter around the welfare state). - Whether the national fracture is internal to the state (as in the case of minorities) or external (as in the case of foreign migrants). - When, why and with whom do left wing organisations, movements and individuals frame their reflection with a national(ist) perspective? The workshop will be open to junior and senior political scientists, historians and sociologists with an interest in the topic. Academic quality, an appropriate geographical coverage of different case studies, and gender balance will be the key criteria guiding the selection. Although privileging qualitative approaches that examine party discourses and practices, as well as theoretical debates, in depth and, possibly, over time, we will also welcome papers using quantitative methods.

Title Details
Leftist citizens’ agency in negotiating their Spanish nationalism: silent and voice strategies View Paper Details
Portuguese Nationalistic Rhetoric: Stage Left View Paper Details
Too Much is Too Much’ or ‘All is Well’: A csQCA of Western European social democratic parties’ nationalist position-taking (2008-2018) View Paper Details
Greens and the Nation: is Small Beautiful ? View Paper Details
Lost in Welfare-Chauvinism? Left-Wing Parties in Times of Economic Turmoil View Paper Details
Nationalism and Populism on the Left: The Case of Podemos View Paper Details
Maintaining or Withdrawing? Majority and Minority Perspectives on the Legitimacy of National Solidarity View Paper Details
EU Free Movement, the Political Left and Brexit View Paper Details
From Europeanization to Patriotism. The Place of Nationalism in the Changing Identity of the Bulgarian Socialist Party View Paper Details
Conflict and Agreement: the Relationship Between the Left and Corsican Nationalists Parties View Paper Details
Bringing Politics Back In. Left-wing Parties in the World of Ethnicized Politics View Paper Details
Constructive protest? Civil society mobilizations and transformations of left-wing nationalism in the French Basque country View Paper Details
The Limits of Self-Management ? The French Democratic Confederation of Labour and Corsican Nationalism in 1970s France View Paper Details
Socialist patriotism and nation-building in Hungary, 1956-1989 View Paper Details