Rethinking Stateless Nations and National Identity in Wales and the Basque Country

  • Sophie Williams

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Sophie Williams
    Pages 1-13
  3. Sophie Williams
    Pages 225-241
  4. Back Matter
    Pages 243-274

About this book


This book looks at the fundamental components of national identity as understood by ordinary nation members, and the way in which it is mobilised by political elites. Drawing on an original case comparison between Wales and the Basque Country, the author suggests there are many commonalities between these two nations, particularly around the fundamentals of their national identities. However, differences occur in terms of degree of intensity of feeling and around the politicisation of identity, with more entrenched and hostile political positioning in the Basque Country than Wales. Through a multi-level comparison, the book generates insights into national identity as a theoretical concept and in a ‘stateless nation’ context. It argues for national identity's intangible, yet polemical, nature, looking at the primordialist way it is understood, its permanence and importance, coupled with its lack of everyday salience and consequent obligations. 

Sophie Williams is Research Officer at the Office for National Statistics, Newport, UK. She holds a PhD from Swansea University and has taught on politics modules at BA and MA levels at Swansea University.


Wales Basque Country nationalism stateless nation national identity the Self the Other UK politics Spanish politics

Authors and affiliations

  • Sophie Williams
    • 1
  1. 1.Office for National StatisticsNewportUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages Political Science and International Studies
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-91408-4
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-91409-1
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