The ideological history of nationalism goes back hundreds of years, and nationalist tendencies are increasing gradually.
What is nationalism?
Nationalism is an ideology that a nation should act as an identifying entity in political and / or cultural life. There are many different definitions of nationalism, but most people define it as a phenomenon that arises and thrives on the basis of affiliation with a particular nation. One can be accepted as a nationalist if he feels a strong attachment to his nation and its community, traditions, history, norms, etc.,
Nationalism has had many different expressions over time, and has always been a controversial phenomenon. In the nineteenth century, nationalism emerged as a strong artistic, social and political movement, and even today, it influences the political environment in Europe and the rest of the world.
Most important question is; what characteristics of a nation has led to the different definitions of nationalism. Some says nationalism definition should be limited to ethnic, cultural, religious or other distinctive characteristics of the society. It is actually the idea of past communities in clans, tribes, etc., which have been lost over time, and now nationalist movements are trying to rejuvenate this ideology.
If you study the development of nationalism in Europe, you can see how nationalist thoughts have characterized different periods of time. The nationalist movements were initially confined to a few intellectuals, but over time the it gradually evolved into a political action towards the mid-1800s. However, only in the second half of the 19th century, nationalism evolved into a real ideology.
Today, growing globalization is often seen as the cause of provoking nationalist thoughts among people around the world as they are afraid of losing their national identity. These tendencies can both constitute a peaceful awareness of their own historical and cultural background, but can also lead to real xenophobia. Therefore, growing role of national cultures have been often subject to discussions.
National flag, national songs, fairy tales and symbols of national identity can be regarded as connective tissues in the national community. Such symbols are often used by nationalist movements for visualization and underpinning national affiliation.