Jul 2, 2007

Creating an Edanian Culture

If Edan is to be a nation (“people who share common customs, origins, history, and frequently language; a nationality”), then we must examine the elements that make a nation. Definitions of ‘nation’ other than that quoted above include such criterion as psychological outlook and shared economic activity. While territory is sometimes included in the definition of ‘nation’, increasingly it is not. The dispersal of people amongst many territories, such as the Jewish Diaspora, has not made the people involved less of a nation. The philosopher Ernest Renan argued that a nation is defined by those people who choose to be members of that nation, a form of Voluntarism very apropos to Edan (even though Renan was not discussing the founding of new nations).

But one common thread is the idea that a nation is defined by a common culture. Culture is, broadly, the common values, social norms, institutions, and artifacts shared by a people or nation. I know, I know; the definitions are tautological (‘nations’ are people that share a culture while a ‘culture’ are the things shared by the people of a nation). But this reflects that the concepts of ‘nation’ and ‘culture’ are not truly separable. Therefore, it is imperative that Edan develop an Edanian culture if it is to survive, let alone thrive. Any attempt to create a nation, either real or model, is predicated upon developing a culture concurrently.

In light of this, there will be a series of articles on values (both personal and collective), norms, institutions and their social importance, and artifacts.

Post a Comment