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Do Shared Values Underpin National Identity? Examining the Role of Values in National Identity in Canada and the United Kingdom

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Abstract:

This article examines whether shared national values form a vital component in the construction and development of national identity. In so doing, it challenges Kymlicka and Norman in their assumption that shared values have little relevance for national identity. Drawing upon competing nationalist discourses in Canada, Quebec, Scotland and the United Kingdom, we argue that the idea of shared values serves as a useful tool in shaping and reinforcing national identities within multinational states. Such values contribute to defining the collective conception of national identity, describing who we are as a people, and what it is that binds us together while distinguishing us from others.

Keywords: Canada; Discourse; Identity; Nationalism; United Kingdom; Values

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14608940500144286

Publication date: June 1, 2005

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