Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty: New Paths to National Emancipation and Empowerment

By Alain-G. Gagnon

© 2014

For thirty years, Alain-G. Gagnon has been one of the world’s leading experts on federalism and multinational democracies. In Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty, he presents an articulate and accessible introduction to the ways in which minority nations have begun to empower themselves in a global environment that is increasingly hostile to national minorities.

Comparing conditions in Quebec, Catalonia, and Scotland, Gagnon offers six interrelated essays on national minorities, processes of accommodation, and autonomy and self-determination within a modern democratic context. Based on a long career of scholarly study and public engagement, he argues that self-determination for these “nations without states” is best achieved through intercultural engagement and negotiation within the federal system, rather than through independence movements.

Already translated into fifteen languages from the original French, Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty is an essential text on the theory of multinational federalism and the politics of minority nations.This edition also features a foreword by noted political scientist and philosopher James Tully that discusses the significance of Gagnon's work.

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Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 176 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.5in x 9.0in
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Quick Overview

Already translated into fifteen languages from the original French, Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty is an essential text on the theory of multinational federalism and the politics of minority nations.

Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty: New Paths to National Emancipation and Empowerment

By Alain-G. Gagnon

© 2014

For thirty years, Alain-G. Gagnon has been one of the world’s leading experts on federalism and multinational democracies. In Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty, he presents an articulate and accessible introduction to the ways in which minority nations have begun to empower themselves in a global environment that is increasingly hostile to national minorities.

Comparing conditions in Quebec, Catalonia, and Scotland, Gagnon offers six interrelated essays on national minorities, processes of accommodation, and autonomy and self-determination within a modern democratic context. Based on a long career of scholarly study and public engagement, he argues that self-determination for these “nations without states” is best achieved through intercultural engagement and negotiation within the federal system, rather than through independence movements.

Already translated into fifteen languages from the original French, Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty is an essential text on the theory of multinational federalism and the politics of minority nations.This edition also features a foreword by noted political scientist and philosopher James Tully that discusses the significance of Gagnon's work.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 176 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.5in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    “Bold and direct, Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty succinctly draws together normative theory and comparative politics as very few have done in this area.”
    Peter Graefe, Department of Political Science, McMaster University

    “This is a clear and courageous work that sheds light not only on the conflicts in progress in Scotland, Quebec, and Catalonia, but also on the general debate regarding supranational institutions’ legitimacy in a diverse and globalized world.”
    Daniel Innerarity, Ikerbasque Chair in Social and Political Philosophy, University of the Basque Country

    “Drawing on his deep, unparalleled comparative knowledge of complex federal regimes, Gagnon combines the resources of political theory and comparative political sociology to define the conditions in which minority nations can flourish.”
    Guy Laforest, Department of Political Science, Université Laval

    “The main objective of this important and timely study is to suggest new paths by which  members of minority nations may work towards emancipating and empowering themselves within the federations in which they coexist with other nations and partners of various kinds.”


    From the Foreword by James Tully
  • Author Information

    Alain-G. Gagnon holds the Canada Research Chair in Québec and Canadian Studies in the Department of Political Science at UQAM. He is author of Minority Nations in the Age of Uncertainty (2014), which has been translated into 18 languages.
  • Table of contents

    Foreword by James Tully

    Introduction: National Cultures, Democracy, and Legitimacy

    1. Linguistic Diversity, Language Policy, and the Limits of Federal Accommodation

    2. New Challenges for Multinational States: Globalization and Competing Citizenship Regimes

    3. The Pillars of Quebec’s New Citizenship Regime: The Informal Constitution and Interculturalism

    4. From Containment to Empowerment: Moving towards Positive Autonomy

    5. Towards Multinational Federalism: Moving beyond the Integration-Accommodation Dyad

    6. Rethinking Intercommunal Relations in Canada

    Conclusion: Embracing a New Politics of Dignity and Hospitality

    Appendix: The Dignity of Catalonia

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