City and countryside in the imagining of nations

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The results of recent US Presidential elections and the UK Brexit referendum reveal a deeply polarised politics along a rural–urban axis, with “left” parties dominating in cities, and “right” parties dominating the countryside. This polarised populism marks a change in the context of nation building. In liberal democracies, routinised contestation over national values and identities constantly drives nation building. This chapter analyses a shift, around 1970, between a phase of “classic nation building” associated with the rise of the modern, centralised bureaucratic state, and one of “nation deconstructing” associated with recent neoliberalism and globalisation. The former attended to the rural–urban relationship in imagining the nation, while in the latter the urban has tended to eclipse the rural, weakening national integration.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPolitics and Policies of Rural Authenticity
EditorsPavel Pospěch, Eirik Magnus Fuglestad, Elisabete Figueiredo
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781003091714
ISBN (Print)9780367550448
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sep 2021

Publication series

NamePerspectives on Rural Policy and Planning


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