states today are populated by many 'nations'

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Senior Member
Israel, hebrew
What means the word nations in this context? I'm not sure if it means citizenship? Most states today are populated by many nations, and some nations are not states.

-From the Book "World politics and transformation" by Charles W. Kegley, Jr and Shannon L. Blanton
  • JamesM

    Senior Member
    I suspect it's defined in the context. Nation can mean many things. I imagine he is using the word in the sense of "tribe / group of people who identify themselves with each other".


    Senior Member
    English (US)
    A nation can be any group of people that form a community, usually within some geographical area, and generally people that share things like an ethnicity, language, cultural traditions, etc. So an entire country (like the United States) can be called a nation, but you can also have nations within countries (like the Navajo nation, a Native American nation within the United States, but not a country).

    Very often in English the word "nation" is just used as a synonym of "country" or "state" though.


    ▶noun a large body of people united by common descent, culture, or language, inhabiting a particular state or territory. ■ a North American Indian people or confederation of peoples.


    Senior Member
    American English
    You are allowed to quote up to four sentences and it would be good if you gave us enough information to go on. I know you have to type it in, but you could save everyone the effort of searching and typing in order to help you.

    Here is a more complete passage. The term nation is defined in the first sentence.

    A nation is a collection of people who, on the basis of ethnic, linguistic, or cultural commonality, so construct their reality as to primarily perceive themselves to be members of the same group, which defines their identity. Thus, the term nation-state implies a convergence between territorial states and the psychological identification of the people within them. [Sentence omitted.] Most states today are populated by many nations, and some nations are not states. These “non-state” nations are ethnic groups such as Native Americans in the United States, Sikhs in India, Basques in Spain, or Kurds in Iraq, Turkey, Iran, and Syria – composed of people without sovereign power over the territory in which they live.

    Here is the searchable book on Amazon.
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