“Debating Nationalism – The Global Spread of nations” – a conversation with Florian Bieber

Even though the end of nationalism has been predicted several times by now, nationalism continues to permeate the global system, interstate relations, and people’s (everyday) behavior.  With Brexit and Boris Johnson’s election, the election of Donald Trump, the success of Narendra Modi’s BJP in India, then Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Turkey, Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, Rodrigo Duterte in the Philippines, Hungary’s Viktor Orbán, as well as with the electoral success of far-right parties in Austria, Italy and elsewhere, nationalism appears to be on the rise in global politics in recent years. During the periods of profound crises – like the global economic crisis in 2008 or the current COVID 19 pandemic – nationalism presents ‘a ready-made product on the “market place of ideas”’. In his newly published book, Florian Bieber focuses on the emergence of nationalism and its historical evolution.  In taking a global perspective, Bieber reflects upon main themes in the existing scholarship and sheds light on some of the contemporary trends found in the nationalism of today through engagement with debates about migration, diversity and authoritarian politics.

Besides discussing the origin of his new book, challenges of writing about and researching nations and nationalism from a global perspective, and asking what makes nations and nationalism so durable, this episode of Opinion Peace (link below) also touches upon the role and the rise of the (nation) state in the current crisis and the potential impact(s) of the current pandemic on nationalism.


Florian Bieber
(copyright Uni Graz) 

Florian Bieber is a Professor in South East European History and Politics and director of the Center for South East European Studies at the University of Graz. He is also a Visiting Professor at the Nationalism Studies Program at Central European University, and a coordinator of the Balkans in Europe Policy Advisory Group. Bieber’s research interests include institutional design in multiethnic states, nationalism and ethnic conflict, and the political systems of South-eastern Europe. In addition to teaching and research, he has been providing expert advice on minorities and minority rights for the European Commission, the OSCE, and the Council of Europe as well as to governments and international organizations on the Balkans.  This year he published two books Debating Nationalism. The Global Spread of Nations (Bloomsbury 2020) and The Rise of Authoritarianism in the Western Balkans (Palgrave 2020). Most recently, Foreign Policy published his opinion piece  Authoritarianism in the Time of the Coronavirus”. More about Florian Bieber’s work can be found on his website and Twitter.


Host: Sladjana Lazic

Post-production & text: Sladjana Lazic

Share this: