Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The origins of Jingoism ?

As a former student of an instituiton with a large mixed student population,I have had many opportunities to witness jingoistic tendencies among people.The region from which one hails from,the primary language that one speaks,one's religious beliefs and even the kind of music that one listens to can all be hailed as reasons for people holding chavunistic attitudes.Passive jngoism always seems to be at play,and usually turns active after a trigger-Even something as trivial as a region-specific sporting event can act as a reason for violent confrontation between people belonging to different 'groups'.
It can also be clearly seen that fanaticism exists everywhere,and at every level-From small gangs and cliques to large nations with aggressive foreign policies.The number of people who do not identify themselves as belonging to any one group at any level are few and far apart.(It can also be argued that a group of two or more such people can be considered a group itself.)
Groups at any level also seem to possess the following traits :

1.Consensual agreement among its members for certain issues,even if the members do not agree with each other for other issues,seen as irrelevant to the functioning of the group itself.

2.A tendency amongst most of its members to regard their group as superior to other groups on the same level.

3.A tendency among most of its members to be aggressive to any member formerly part of the group,but is not anymore.

4.The members of a group at one level are all not necessarily part of a single group at another level,but the ones who are,tend to form sub-groups within a group.

The reason why groups exist is definitely not a singular one,and one reason surely cannot satisfactorily explain their prescence,though I believe that groups arise because humans are naturally pack animals,and in the absence of a rigid pack system,we tend to blend into what is the closest equivalent.In pack animals such as dogs and wolves,agression towards non-members of the pack is sometimes observed,and the parallel to this in human society may be jingoism.