Mass Perceptions of National Identity: Evidence from Survey Data

Murrey Stewart Leith and Daniel P. J. Soule

in Political Discourse and National Identity in Scotland

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9780748637362
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748652914 | DOI:
Mass Perceptions of National Identity: Evidence from Survey Data

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This chapter evaluates survey data to outline how individuals, when aggregated, conceive of their national identity, and what criteria of national membership they impose to determine who can, and cannot, be a member of the Scottish nation. It looks at the dynamics of national identity in relation to the constitutional, political, and wider cultural inflections, as deducible from the mass survey data. The analysis begins with a reflection on the strength of feeling as regards a Scottish versus a British sense of identity, shifting then to a consideration of certain key questions relating to the nature of national identity within Scotland. It also considers the interaction between strength of national identification and how individuals construe national belonging and Scottish identity. The chapter furthermore describes the theoretical divide that challenges any study into nationalism and national identity both within Scotland and upon the wider stage.

Keywords: national identity; national membership; Scotland; survey data; British identity

Chapter.  7073 words. 

Subjects: UK Politics

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