[ex libris] The Symbolic State

Minority Recognition, Majority Backlash, and Secession in Multinational Countries and Autonomy.

  • English
  • Date: 23.06.2022, 15:00–16:30
  • Place: Zoom
  • Typology: Webinar
  • Info:


[ex libris] The Symbolic State Minority Recognition, Majority Backlash, and Secession in Multinational Countries and Autonomy Karlo Basta McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2021

The nation-state is a double sleight of hand, naturalizing both the nation and the state encompassing it. No such naturalization is possible in multinational states. To explain why these countries experience political crises that bring their very existence into question, standard accounts point to conflicts over resources, security, and power. This book turns the spotlight on institutional symbolism.

When minority nations in multinational states press for more self-government, they are not only looking to protect their interests. They are asking to be recognized as political communities in their own right. Yet satisfying their demands for recognition threatens to provoke a reaction from members of majority nations who see such changes as a symbolic repudiation of their own vision of politics. Secessionist crises flare up when majority backlash reverses symbolic concessions to minority nations. Through a synoptic historical sweep of Canada, Spain, Yugoslavia, and Czechoslovakia,The Symbolic State shows us that institutions may be more important for what they mean than for what they do.

23 June 2022

Author of the book Karlo Basta, University of Edinburgh

Discussants Maja Sahadžić, University of Antwerp Francisco Javier Romero Caro, Institute for Comparative Federalism, Eurac Research

Moderation Petra Malfertheiner, Institute for Comparative Federalism, Eurac Research

Info and contact Francisco Javier Romero Caro Eurac Research – Institute for Comparative Federalism franciscojavier.romerocaro@eurac.edu



4c/2022: DATE - Diversity Accommodation through Territorial Equalization

Duration: October 2020 - May 2022Funding: Provincial P.-L.P. 14. Research ...

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