Nationalism is the issue of our age. In The Virtue of Nationalism, Israeli philosopher Yoram Hazony makes the positive case for nationalism in an honest, reasoned, morally unflinching way. This book offers an eye-opening rethinking of the modern political experience.
It recounts how English, Dutch, Scots and American Protestants revived the Old Testament’s love of national independence—and how their nationalism freed them from the vision of world empire promoted by the German-Catholic Holy Roman Emperors. It was this Protestant reconstruction of the political world that brought national freedom to peoples from Poland to India, and from Israel to Ethiopia.
But since the 1960s, the tide has turned against the ideal of national independence. Both in America and Europe, “globalists” now see unfettered national self-determination as having been responsible for two World Wars and the Holocaust. The answer they have offered us—“global governance”—is well-intentioned. Yet in advancing it, they have reawakened hatreds they didn’t count on: The old war between Protestant nationalists and Catholic universalists that destroyed much of Europe in the 17th century has returned.
Hazony argues that in view of this renewed clash between nationalism and universalism, we will have to make a choice: Either a world of independent states, or a renewal of the ideal of universal empire—which means, inevitably, American empire.
The Virtue of Nationalism compares the options before us, and suggests that if it’s freedom we want, we should fight to preserve a world of independent nations.
“Hazony masterfully blends a deep grasp of history, political philosophy, theology, and common sense with originality and clarity in what will be one of the most-discussed books of this dawning new age of the nation.”
– Patrick Deneen, Professor of Political Science, University of Notre Dame
“Yoram Hazony’s The Virtue of Nationalism belongs among the great works of political theory. Hazony presents a radical, even dangerous thesis: What if nationalism is not the scourge that today’s left views it as, but rather the best hope humanity has? The Virtue of Nationalismmounts a necessary challenge to the liberal order of the day.”
– Batya Ungar-Sargon, Opinion Editor, The Forward
“In this engaging and deeply learned book, Yoram Hazony explores the religious and historical roots of nationalism, illuminates its modern accomplishments, and thereby offers a uniquely insightful guide to the forces transforming the politics of the West.”
– Yuval Levin, Editor, National Affairs
“Hazony’s book is profound as well as accessible and well-crafted, reflecting years of inquiry and reflection into a subject of unparalleled importance. Political figures, scholars, and the broader public will have to think carefully about this remarkable book.”
– Natan Sharansky, Chairman of the Executive, Jewish Agency
“This book by Yoram Hazony is fantastic.”
— Ben Shapiro, Editor of The Daily Wire and author of The Establishment is Dead