How (and why) the new nationalism is all about building a nation-brand for the global economy

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The spectacular appearance of the brand new nation might seem off- script or even plain ironic to those familiar with the story of globalisation – like a late-twentieth-century shorthand for the unhindered movement of capital, labor, goods, and people – and the opening up of the world. Weren’t we once told that the nation-state had been made “obsolete,” a superfluous political artefact in the age of globalisation? And that the nation-state was standing on “its last legs,” faced as it was with “crisis” and potential demise?

Recall how the euphoric triumph in the 1990s of liberalism at the “end of history” had ushered in the seemingly unstoppable force of globalisation and in the process brought world areas previously closed to global capital into the fold of free markets. The global nature of this capitalist transformation was produced in the language of accelerated mobility – of flows, movement, inter- connections,…

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