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Print Price: $107.50

248 pp.
156 mm x 234 mm


Publication date:
July 2008

Imprint: OUP UK

Nationalism and Social Policy

The Politics of Territorial Solidarity

Daniel Beland and Andre Lecours

Despite the recent proliferation of literature on nationalism and on social policy, relatively little has been written to analyse the possible interaction between the two. Scholars interested in social citizenship have indirectly dealt with the interaction between national identity and social programs, but they have seldom examined this connection in reference to nationalism. Specialists of nationalism rarely mention social policy, focusing instead on language, culture, ethnicity, and religion. The main objective of this book is to explore the nature of the connection between nationalism and social policy from a comparative and historical perspective. At the theoretical level, this analysis will shed new light on a more general issue: the relationships between identity formation, territorial politics, and social policy.

Although this book refers to the experience of many different countries, the main cases are three multinational states, that is, states featuring strong nationalist movements: Canada (Québec), the United Kingdom (Scotland), and Belgium (Flanders). The book looks at the interplay between nationalism and social policy at both the state and sub-state levels through a detailed comparison between these three cases. In its concluding chapter, the book brings in cases of mono-national states, like Germany and the United States to provide broader comparative insight on the meshing of nationalism and social policy. The original theoretical framework for this research is built using insight from selected scholarship on nationalism and on the welfare state.

Readership : Scholars and students of political science, especially those interested in the welfare state, social policy, multiculturalism, sociology, and nationalism.

1. Understanding the Nationalism-Social Policy Nexus
2. Canada: Nationalism, Federalism, and Social Policy
3. The United Kingdom: Nationalism, Devolution, and Social Policy
4. Belgium: Nationalism, State Reform, and the Federalisation Debate

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Daniel Béland is a Professor of Public Policy and Sociology at the University of Saskatchewan (Canada). He has been a visiting scholar at Harvard University and The University of Chicago, a Fulbright Scholar at The George Washington University, and a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center. A political sociologist analyzing politics and public policy from a comparative and historical perspective, he has published four books (Une sécurité libérale? 2001; Social Security: History and Politics from the New Deal to the Privatization Debate 2005, States of Global Insecurity 2007; and Social Security: A Documentary History [with Larry DeWitt and Edward D. Berkowitz]) and more than three dozen articles in journals. André Lecours (Ph.D. Carleton, 2001) is Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at Concordia University. His primary research interests are nationalism, with an area specialization on Western Europe, and institutionalism theory. He is the author of Basque Nationalism published by the University of Nevada Press in 2007 and the editor of New Institutionalism: Theory and Analysis published by the University of Toronto Press in 2005. Professor Lecours' articles on nationalism, regionalism, identity politics, paradiplomacy, new institutionalism and Spanish and Belgian politics have appeared in a number of journals.

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Special Features

  • Major new examination of the link between national identity and the welfare state
  • Contains indepth case studies
  • Brings together two important literatures