The Philosopher Who Coined the Term ‘Nationalism’ Also Preached Inclusivity

275 Years Ago, Johann Gottfried Herder Imagined Nations Forming Around a Common Language and Culture, Not a Common Enemy

Since the French Revolution, a brilliant cast of ideologies has starred on the world stage, ranging from conservatism to liberalism to communism. Yet the -ism that has been most resilient, and today has become resurgent, is one that modern thinkers dismissed as a walk-on. Nationalism, the political theorist Isaiah Berlin once observed, was long thought to be an allergic reaction of national consciousness when “held down and forcibly repressed by despotic rulers.” Remove this particular allergen, and the sneezing fit of nationalism would end. 
 
Yet as we stumble into …

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Why Don’t American Jews Search for Their Heritage in New York City?

Tourists Now See the Holocaust, Not the Lower East Side, as the Core of the Jewish Experience

While the Jewish heritage industry is booming in many places, it is struggling in New York.

This poses a problem not just for the city but also for those who …

Ulysses Grant’s Forgotten Fight for Native American Rights

The President and His Seneca Friend Ely Parker Wanted Indians to Gain Citizenship, But Their Efforts Are Mostly Lost to History

The man elected president in 1868—Ulysses S. Grant—was determined to change the way many of his fellow Americans understood citizenship. As he saw it, anyone could become an American, not …

For California’s New Governor, Big Mistakes Will Lead to Greatness

Gavin Newsom Can’t Make Meaningful Progress on Health Care or Housing Without an Appetite for Risk

“I’ll be watching from the ranch… but I’m only an hour from Sacramento, so Gavin, do not screw up.” — Gov. Jerry Brown, November 5, 2018

Gavin, screw up. Please.

Make mistakes. …

How Hawai‘i Inspired the Advance of Aviation

In the 1920s, the Contest to Cross the Ocean and Reach the Islands Was Deadly—and Transformational

Approximately 20 million airline passengers traveled through Hawaiian airports last year. That might seem like a lot of people on a couple of small Pacific islands, but Hawai‘i hardly broke …

The Quiet Yalie Who Invented American Football

As a Player and Coach, Walter Camp Rewrote Rugby’s Rules to Create a Sport Fit for America

American football is the all-but-official sport of the United States. But for all the media coverage it draws, the origin story of football gets missed. How did this game …