Liberalism Against the Nation: A False Hypothesis of Historical Analysis

Sergiu Miscoiu


The main objective of this essay is to offer an answer to the following question: Is there a scientific ground for the theory of the historical opposition between liberalism and the nation? In order to answer this question, this essay is organised in three parts. The first part identifies the position of the nation within the classical liberal discourse; the second identifies the crucial moment of the 1950 s as the precise period in which a major change in the relation between liberalism and the nation took place; the third one identifies the moment of the nation s restoration within the contemporary liberal discourse. The main conclusion of this essay is that, except for a brief though noteworthy period (which explains the actual apparent consensus concerning the opposition between the liberal and the national theories), the nation was a fundamental component of the liberal discourse and of the liberal political practices rather than a result of an opposing political vision.


political science, historiography, liberalism, nation, democracy

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