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Against Paranoid Nationalism
By Ghassan Hage

Not long ago, an excessive 'worrying' about the nation was associated with extreme Right organisations. Today this worrying and the paranoid nationalism in which it is grounded have become part of our mainstream political culture. Why?

In an original thesis marrying political economy and psychoanalysis, Ghassan Hage defines societies as mechanisms for the production and distribution of hope. He argues that the rise of paranoid nationalism throughout the world is linked to the shrinking of western nation-states' ability to distribute hope among their citizens. In shrinking the shared space of the public sector, neo-liberal policies have loosened the social bonds, diminishing our hopes for a better life and making us anxious and worried.

Hage examines the effects of the culture of worrying on 'White' Australian politics, using this as a case study to examine social issues that relate to many Western countries. He argues an alternative can be found to our current climate in the notion of 'the caring society'. If the defensive society sees threats everywhere and generates worrying citizens, the caring society generates citizens who care about each other. Hage explores an ethics of care through an analysis of the important relationship between migration and the colonisation and dispossession of Australia's indigenous people.

Ghassan Hage teaches Anthropology at the University of Sydney and is fast becoming one of Australia's most controversial public intellectuals. His previously published books include Arab-Australians Today: Citizenship and Belonging, and White Nation: Fantasies of White Supremacy in a Multicultural Society.

In a voice distinctively his own Hage speaks in many tones- analytical, polemical, caustic, ironic compassionate. Few writers engage so uncompromisingly the whole of oneself. For that reason Hage can be profoundly unsettling. Few people will not sometimes disagree with him... By the same token, few people will not thank him for it. Raimond Gaita Professor of Moral Philosophy, University of London King's College, Professor of Philosophy, Australian Catholic University, and author of A Common Humanity and The Philosopher's Dog.


ISBN: 1864031964

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