Synopses & Reviews
What do people think when they imagine themselves as part of a nation? What are the experiences and symbols that define their nationhood? Nation and Commemoration examines how two similar sets of people, Australians and Americans, have created and recreated their different national identities. Lyn Spillman compares American and Australian national identities at the end of the nineteenth century and again at the end of the twentieth.
"This book adds to our understanding by drawing on the historical experiences of `settler' countries." "...Spillman offers us an understanding of differences and similarities in Australian and U.S. national identities, and of national identity formation in general." Connie L. McNeely, Social Forces" Nation and Commemoration is a towering achievement...because it makes sense of massive amounts of information about national identity and collective memory without simplistically reducing it...to the manipulative imagination of cultural elites. Spillman's book will be a standard reference. No other book documents so thoroughly and so persuasively the process by which nations come to know themselves." Barry Schwartz, American Jrnl of Sociology"Nation and commemoration provides a detailed, comparative analysis of national identity as revealed by national celebrations in two countries." International Affairs"Nation and Commemoration makes an important contribution to the literature on national identity, through a study of the centennial and bicentennial celebrations in Australia and United States." Journal of Australian Studies"...Spillman has...written a lively, clear and engaging book that is obviously well researched." Australian Journal of Political Science"This is a rich book, and one from which a great variety of readers will find something to add to their own thinking about Australian and American nationalism." Journal of Intercultural Studies"Apart from finding the book interesting and well contructed, any scholar working in this area, or related areas, will particularly value the bibliographic material." Sociology
How US and Australian national identities formed and represented in their bi/centennial celebrations.
What are the experiences and symbols which define nationhood? Nation and Commemoration focuses on the major centennial and bicentennial celebrations to examine how two similar sets of people, Australians and Americans, have created and recreated their different national identities.
Table of Contents
1. Comparing national identities; 2. 'Every-one admits that commemorations have their uses': producing national identities in celebration; 3. 'Our country by the world received': centennial celebrations in 1876 and 1888; 4. 'To remind ourselves that we are a united nation': bicentennial celebrations in 1976 and 1988; 5. Making nations meaningful in the United States and Australia.