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Islands in the stream: Revisiting methodological nationalism under conditions of globalization

Bailey, Nicholas J. and Winchester, Nik James 2012. Islands in the stream: Revisiting methodological nationalism under conditions of globalization. Sociology 46 (4) , pp. 712-727. 10.1177/0038038511425563

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Reference to the sovereign nation-state has traditionally been held to lie at the heart of the conceptualization of inter-state relations in social scientific discourse. Recent debates have sought to problematize the centrality of this concept, particularly under the banner of globalization. Specifically, it has been argued that contemporary practices have weakened national boundaries thereby undermining the effectiveness of state actors and the relevance and explanatory value of the national. In this article we examine the maritime industry as a ‘critical case’, and demonstrate how in an extensively globalized context the national understood as legitimate authority, grounded in territory, is still necessary to understand certain key processes. We present a series of cases in which the normal, smooth operation of shipping is disturbed, in order to reveal operative practice. Our claim is that methodological nationalism continues to be a legitimate perspective even in an extensively globalized context.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Uncontrolled Keywords: authority; globalization; methodological nationalism; state; territory
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISSN: 0038-0385
Funders: RCUK
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:58

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