Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Nature of Empire

I was reading this article which argues the British Empire still exists & actually dominates world affairs through "it's" influence in the realms of finances, politics, & natural resources.

Supposedly "it" just isn't called "The British Empire" anymore. Well, that made me question the very nature of the collective entities that we call empires & nation-states.

A 'nation' is basically an abstract concept of organization that people mutually accept or are usually forced to accept. It's interesting (for me, anyway) to consider the rise and fall of social structures throughout history. Despite its ephemeral nature, the nation-state is a useful organizing principle for the chaotic swarm known as 'the human race'. I just think it's good to keep a perspective on the actual reality of powerful institutions such as nations, banks, religions, sports teams- that we take for granted as 'real' things with a individual existence unto themselves. This, of course, is an illusion.

These videos from Maps of War shows what I've called the amoeba-like quality to the interaction of these political & religious movements throughout time.

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