Nation and Commemoration
What do people think when they imagine themselves as part of a nation? Nation and Commemoration answers this question in an exploration of the creation and recreation of national identities through commemorative activities. Extending recent work in cultural sociology and history, Lyn Spillman compares centennial and bicentennial celebrations in the United States and Australia to show how national identities can emerge from processes of 'cultural production'. She systematically analyses the symbols and meanings of national identity in these two 'new nations', identifying changes and continuities, similarities and differences in how visions of history, place in the world, politics, land, and diversity have been used to express nationhood. The result is a deeper understanding, not only of American and Australian national identities, but also of the global process of nation-formation.