free essayA nation-state is a collection of individuals living within a given territory that shares some characteristics. People who stay within a given territory are considered to form a state when they perpetually live in the defined region. In addition, they have a similar culture, certain form of control and their beliefs, and they are considered to be sovereign. Moreover,, nation-states are considered to be independent political units that have their own jurisdiction over given territories and all the activities are carried out within the state (Malešević, 2013). Although at the time the nation-states appeared governments failed to fully exercise the jurisdiction, but states had the power to force human activities to adhere to a given political map. Due to the increase in the complexity of societies, citizens started to seek political organization, first, on the basis of their kinship, after in the tribes, and finally in the city states (Malešević, 2013). In the 15th-century city, states stated to develop as nation-states. Although there are no pure nation-states, some of the examples that are almost similar to a nation-state include Japan, the United States, France, Egypt, and Iceland (Joffe, 2012).

Definition of Nation-State

The phenomenon of “nation-state” emphasizes the new alliance between nation and state. Nation-state is a term used to refer to a specific type of political entity that is guided by a cultural entity, and it mainly derives its legitimacy to successfully serve all people. A nation-state is also used to refer to a sovereign state in which a majority of the subjects are united by different factors such as a common language, common culture, traditions cherished within a given territory (La, n.d). In an ideal type of nation-state, the people consist of the only nation and the state serves the purpose of protecting, housing its national identity. Initially, there were no nation states and a majority of the current nation-states were located in the areas belonged to the others (Malešević, 2013). These nation-states were formed due to the political campaigns by the nationalists. Therefore, the formation of a nation-state was the main demand for the nationalist movement who wanted to strengthen the welfare of people within the nation.

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The initial formation of nation-states started in France during the French revolution. Later, the idea of the nation-state was spread across the Europe and afterward to the rest of the world. Island countries such as British and Japan acquired the concept of the nation-state faster but it happened coincidentally (UNESCO, n.d). Some of the current nation-states like those in Europe and those in the North America emerged in the 19th and the 20th centuries respectively. These were promoted and made the model types of governance (Joffe, 2012). In the year 1919, the League of Nations had predicted the rise of the concept of nation-state to several other countries (Malešević, 2013). To become nation-states, there were two directions that were followed by countries. The first direction is that countries became nation-states by using peaceful methods, and people within a given territory organized a common government for their nation states through elections (Joffe, 2012). In the second method, people applied oppressive and violent methods by using the army to conquer a territory before imposing their wills on the people.

Characteristics of Nation-State

Some of the most the common features of a nation-state are the population that lives in the same territory united by a common national identity and traditions; a nation state has an official language, it is independent and sovereign, in addition, it has specifically defined borders (Joffe, 2012). Sovereign means that a nation-state can rule itself without the external interference. For example, the United States was a colony of the Great Britain at the time of the American Revolution (La, n.d). After the American Revolution, America formed a nation-state.

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Nation-states started to rule themselves through a government. For, example the United States has a government that is divided into three main branches which are the legislative, the executive, and the judicial: the state, federal, and the local. All the nation-states’ governments are not organized in a similar manner (Joffe, 2012), their governments are organized in different forms. All the land and the water within a country’s territory are owned and controlled by a nation-state (Joffe, 2012). For instance, the territory of America has about 50 different states and all are controlled by the United States government.

Examples of Nation-State

Egypt is a good example of a nation-state. Egypt as a nation-state is tied to its location and the long history. Egyptians are united by a common language which is Arabic, and they have diverse cultures. Although Egypt underwent developments that brought about conflicting beliefs about it, currently Egypt is united under a common language, history, and culture (Malešević, 2013). As a nation-state, Egypt practices politics that are organized in a multi-party system and a semi-presidential system of leadership where the executive commands are divided between the Prime Minister and the President. Egypt holds multi-party parliamentary elections, which are divided into the Parliament of Egypt, the Consultative Council, and The People’s Assembly (Joffe, 2012). Egypt has one of the largest and well-equipped militaries that enable to carry out its self-rule. When it comes to foreign relations, Egypt became one of the first Arab states that established diplomatic relations with the country of Israel, and it has played vital roles in the process of solving conflicts between different Arab states such as the Israel and Palestinian conflicts (Malešević, 2013).  Egypt as a nation-state has a population that consists of different ethnic groups. Egypt has its territories in the northern Africa, and it is bordered by Libya to the West, Israel, the Gaza Strip to the East, and Sudan to the south.

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Another example of nation-state is Japan, since it has a population that shares a common identity. Besides, Japan is united by several national symbols such as the national anthem and the national flag and several other national emblems (Malešević, 2013). All these emblems play an imperative role in promoting the Japanese national identity. Also, Japan is characterized by internal uniformity and national unity. As a national state, Japan has a language policy, cultural policy, and an education system that is subordinated to this goal (Malešević, 2013). Japan as a nationstate has put measures that are aimed at reducing disparities in income.

The United States is one more example of a nation-state. The United States has several states that are united. The United States has struggled for several years to get what is common for the nation-state that is to be governed by a single government (Worldology, n.d). Initially, the United States had several independent states that were governed by different governing bodies. However, currently, the United States is under one sovereign government (Malešević, 2013). In addition, although the United States is considered to be a multicultural state, there some common cultures for the United States hat include Modernism, Consumerism, Individualism, Capitalism, Secularism, and Religiosity (Joffe, 2012). Some of the foreign policy objectives of the United States, as a nation-state, are protecting its territorial integrity and protecting the territorial integrity of its allies.

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Due to the structure, France is also a good model of a nation-state. France has a population of people living in the same territory. The country has a common language that is used for the communication purpose (Worldology, n.d). In addition, France has a territory which borders are marked by the Pyrenees Mountains that located between the modern Spain and France. France has localized cultures that are bound by a common heritage, language and the French identity. Moreover, Paris acts as the heart of the French empire (Worldology, n.d). France as a nation-state has a structure of leadership that makes it a sovereign state.

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A nation-state is a specific type of political entity that is guided by a cultural entity, and it derives its legitimacy by serving its citizens. The main characteristics of a nation state are a population that lives in the same territory, an official language, independence, and sovereignty, and specifically defined borders. Some examples of nation states include Egypt where the Arabic language is used as the main national language. It also has a communal culture, and it is united under the governance of the President and the Prime Minister. Japan also has several emblems that represent its cultures such as the national anthem and the national flag. The United States is also a good example of a nation-state. Although, initially, America existed as separate states, but it struggled to unite and, currently, the United States is a sovereign state. France is a sovereign state that has people with a common language and culture. Although, there are no pure nation-states, however, currently, there are several countries that tend to meet the requirements to be the nation-state. One of the major reasons to remain to be the nation-state is the political campaigns by the nationalists in different countries.

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