The End of Modern Statehood? Globalization and the Nation-State

Public Lecture, DHI London

GHIL in cooperation with the Seminar in Modern German History, Institute of Historical Research, University of London

Globalization seems to be threatening the most successful form of modern statehood: the nation-state. The political autonomy of national governments and the capacity for self-government of national societies seem to be waning in a world of growing global cultural and economic interrelations. This lecture will examine such diagnoses from a historical perspective. It will argue that modern statehood has developed in response to globalization since the nineteenth century; the nation-state is neither static nor self-contained. Rather, it is a product as well as an actor of globalization. Therefore globalization is responsible for the nation-state’s genesis as much as for its current transformation.

Julia Angster is Professor of Modern History at the University of Mannheim. She earned her Ph.D. and her Habilitation at the University of Tübingen; from 2010 to 2012 she was Professor of British and North American History at the University of Kassel. Her fields of research include German contemporary history, transatlantic relations, the British Empire, and international relations. She is the author of Erdbeeren und Piraten: Die Royal Navy und die Ordnung der Welt 1770–1860 (2012); Reform und Krise: Die Bundesrepublik Deutschland 1963–1982 (2012); and Konsenskapitalismus und Sozialdemokratie: Die Westernisierung von SPD und DGB (2003).