Thinking about “US”: Liberal nationalism and political organizing in Central Iowa

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2023-12
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Cullison, Alexander
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Viatori, Maximilian
Arndt, Grant
Peterson, David
Chukharev, Evgeny
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Anthropology
Abstract
Research on nationalism has made a small resurgence in reaction to right-wing and white supremacist movements in the US and Europe. While valuable, these projects have neglected the participation of other political groups in nationalism, particularly political liberals and, more specifically, Democrats in the United States. Through content analysis, qualitative interviews, and ethnographic fieldwork, this project aims to understand the nature of liberal nationalism, specifically in the context of Central Iowa. Starting during the 2022 Midterm Elections season, this project studies the importance of how people create, negotiate, and challenge imaginings of their communities and mobilize them through political campaigns and local political organizations. In doing so, this study helps to build on other understandings of political motivation and nationalism while also demonstrating the patchwork and sprawling nature of liberalism today.
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