Transnationalism and the Challenge to National Histories

Prasenjit Duara

in Rethinking American History in a Global Age

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 2002 | ISBN: 9780520230576
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520936034 | DOI:
Transnationalism and the Challenge to National Histories

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This chapter examines the limits and alterations that can occur from framing histories too tightly as national narratives. The author argues that history and the nation have historically mutually constituted each other, and that a historian must place himself outside of this process. This should be done in order to get some perspective on the ways history makes national subjects and the ways the nation structures historical thinking. The chapter uses information taken from regional literature of the “borderlands” of Second World War Manchuria and of the United States. The discussion illustrates how complicated the relationship between politics, place, culture, and nation is.

Keywords: national narratives; framing history; historian; historical thinking; regional literature

Chapter.  10138 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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