Anderson falls into the " historicist " or " modernist " school of nationalism along with Ernest Gellner and Eric Hobsbawm in that he posits that nations and nationalism are products of modernity and have been created as means to political and economic ends. Among his many other works are a collection of essays on nationalism in Southeast Asia; an essay on the social forces behind a 1976 counterrevolution in Thailand, three years after a student revolt there toppled a military dictatorship; an analysis of the influence of anarchist ideas on Filipino nationalism; a travelogue about Wat Phai Rong Wua, a popular Buddhist tourist destination in Thailand that tries to depict what hell would be like; and several books on language, power, violence and belief in Indonesia. While the preconditions were set in Europe, Dr. Anderson argued, the development of national consciousness began in the Western Hemisphere — in the United States, Brazil and the former Spanish colonies — in the late 18th century. He realized that there had been no great ‘thinkers’ (like Marx or Hobbes) that focussed on the idea of Nationalism. and extended ed., 2nd ed. “Unlike most other isms, nationalism has never produced its own grand thinkers: no Hobbeses, Tocquevilles, Marxes or Webers,” he wrote. Anderson sympathised with how Tom Nairn (a close collaborator and co-author on New Left Review with Perry Anderson) took up a pro-Scottish position in The Break-Up of Britain (1978) and disagreed with Eric Hobsbawm’s assault on that book, including the assertion that a Marxist could not be a nationalist. Is Benedict Anderson's Imagined Communities more relevant than ever? Benedict Anderson, Scholar Who Saw Nations as ‘Imagined,’ Dies at 79. Benedict Anderson, a scholar of Southeast Asia who transformed the study of nationalism by positing that nations were “imagined communities” … The “deep horizontal comradeship” that characterizes a nation is socially constructed, he wrote, but also heartfelt and genuine; it explains why people die and kill for their countries. Anderson, Benedict, 1936-Imagined communities: reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism. When Anderson declared liberalism and Marxism intellectually bankrupt in the face of nationalism, he did so on the strength of two very brief quotations: Hugh Seton-Watson's conclusion that no scientific definition of the nation could be devised and Tom Nairn's statement that nationalism was ‘Marxism's greatest historical failure'. By “imagined,” Dr. Anderson did not mean that nations are not real; indeed, he wrote, any community larger than a village in which people know one another face to face is to an extent imagined. Nick Danforth ▪ March 7, 2013 Abdullah Ocalan . At any rate, the sub-text positions Anderson as a Marxist or someone sympathetic to Marxism, who was forced, at long last, to admit that the forces of narrow nationalism had betrayed Marxist ideals of socialist fraternity and internationalism. Anderson’s work also highlighted the importance of “creole pioneers” such as Benjamin Franklin and Simón Bolívar in leading movements of national liberation. Mr. Anderson's best-known book explored the emergence and power of nationalism. It was America’s bitter experience in the Vietnam War, and the clashes during that era among Vietnam, Cambodia and China — all Communist states — that prompted Dr. Anderson’s curiosity about the origins of nationalism. This is no suprise with Anderson being most heavily influenced by Marxist thought in … The book urges readers to resist the easy comforts of imagined homes; extols the joys of learning languages and of teaching and doing field work; and examines the New Left’s influence. Dr. Anderson was renowned not only for his theoretical contributions but also for his detailed examinations of language and power in Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines; he was fluent in Indonesian, Javanese, Thai and Tagalog. Anderson regarded national belonging as a central but underappreciated factor in the development of the state. i.e. Instead, Anderson describes the nation as a cultural construct, with a particular history rooted in the fall of monarchies and empires, as well as specific advancements in literacy, technology, and capitalism. 4 -- -dc20 Typeset by GCS, Leighton Buzzard, Beds fundamental about field-work that! Ong last, to rectify Marxism ’ s remarkable book Imagined Communities: Benedict,! 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