Nation and Covenant: The Contribution of Ancient Israel to Modern Nationalism

Anthony D. Smith

in Proceedings of the British Academy, Volume 151, 2006 Lectures

Published by British Academy

Published in print December 2007 | ISBN: 9780197264249
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734045 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

Nation and Covenant: The Contribution of Ancient Israel to Modern Nationalism

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This lecture provides of ancient Israel that were revealed in the Hebrew Bible. It looks at some of the main themes and goals of modern nationalism. One section is devoted to suggesting possible causal links between the two in certain political frameworks and Christian traditions. The lecture also argues that based on the context of competing territorial states, the term ‘covenantal’ nationalism in certain early modern societies has proven to be the first kind of nationalism. This would be followed over a hundred years later by secularising nationalisms, which are both civic-territorial and ethnic-romantic.

Keywords: cultural affinities; covenantal ideals; prophetic ideals; modern nationalism; causal links; political frameworks; Christian traditions; territorial states; covenantal nationalism; secularising nationalisms

Chapter.  18764 words. 

Subjects: Social and Cultural History

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