The current world has gone through a lot of events in the past, which have contributed a lot to its current state. Most of these issues are evident from the rich history that has been documented in various forms. One of the events that the history of the world explains is the formation of different countries. Various countries in the world have been formed, and for them to operate properly, there is a need for a government. A government requires power so that it can be able to run most of its activities effectively. As a result, there are different forms of governments that have been established in various countries, and they have a different way of ruling their people. One such example is the nationalism government, in which the main mode of the ruling is through nationalism. According to Orwell (56), nationalism refers to the habit of identifying oneself with one nation as well as another unit, putting it beyond any form of good or evil and understanding that there is no other duty but to further its interest. This issue inspired the idea of George Orwell to write his book on nationalism in 1984, whereby pointed out the main dangers associated with nationalism.
Dangers of Nationalism
According to George Orwell, most of the countries that adopted nationalism after World War 2, were mainly focused on making sure that only advanced. The leaders of these countries do not care whether they are doing good or evil.
In this case, one of the dangers that Orwell identified concerning nationalism is psychological manipulation (Black 200). Most citizens in countries that are experiencing nationalism have been brainwashed to believe that their government is useful. Moreover, most of the countries experiencing nationalism are constantly watching over their citizens. Therefore, the citizens are constantly monitored as well as scrutinized while doing any activity (Black 200). Also, as part of the manipulation practices, most of these governments forced their citizens to speak only one language.
Another danger that Orwell identified is the physical control apart from mental manipulation. Orwell argues that most of the citizens in the nationalism government are monitored for any form of disloyalty (Hollis 78). In the event a person shows any form of disloyalty, one is arrested and may receive severe punishment. In most case, the punishments that most people undergo is brutal torture.
The fear of this punishment makes people behave in the way that their government expects. While the government is taking part in such measures, it does not care whether it is doing good or evil to the people (Baron, Ritov & Greene 130). Therefore, people will be suffering while the government is only focused on pushing its agenda. Also, as these people are suffering, they are supposed to agree that their government is good.
Control of Information
Thirdly, nationalism is associated with the control of information (Baron, Ritov & Greene 130). In this case, most nationalist countries have created a restriction whereby their citizens cannot be able to access certain information. In this case, the ruling party controls what is being published in the newspapers or conveyed in the media. The citizens will be left to believe everything that the ruling party is telling them. Therefore, they will not be able to know the truths about some aspects, especially those that entail their wellbeing. For instance, in case there are any facts about a scenario such as violence, the government may suppress them to ensure that the citizens do understand the truth because if they do, the government will be in problem.
Resistance and Revolution
Also, nationalism may lead to resistance and revolution. According to George Orwell, being under a nationalism government may affect most of the citizens as they cannot live a life that is free because they are constantly being monitored for their actions (Roeder 56). This issue may influence most of them to develop the desire to gain freedom. In this case, the citizens will start rebelling against the practices of their government as they seek to gain freedom and do what they wish (Roeder 56).
Concluding, it is evident that several dangers are associated with nationalism. George Orwell was one of the scholars who has contributed a lot to this area through his book that was published in 1984. In this book, Orwell argued that there were several dangers associated with nationalism. Most of the countries where nationalism is practiced experience the situation whereby the government is only focused on pushing its agenda without paying attention to the needs of its citizens. Some of the dangers of nationalism that Orwell identified include manipulation of the mind, physical control, resistance, and rebellion, as well as the control of information. Since nationalism is not appropriate for a country as it harms the citizens, it is recommended that measures should be taken to free these countries.
Baron, Jonathan, Ilana Ritov, and Joshua D. Greene. "The duty to support nationalisticpolicies." Journal of Behavioral Decision Making 26.2 (2013): 128-138.
Black, Jack. "From mood to movement: English nationalism, the European Union, and takingback control." Innovation: The European Journal of Social Science Research 32.2(2019): 191-210.
Hollis, Christopher. A study of George Orwell: the man and his works. Skyhorse, 2017.
Orwell, George. Notes on nationalism. Penguin UK, 2018.
Roeder, Philip G. Where nation-states come from Institutional change in the age of nationalism.Princeton University Press, 2012.
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