Eric Hobsbawm, Nations and Nationalism since 1780
Chapter 1: The Nation as novelty: from revolution to liberalism 
pp. 14-18: various old definitions of “nation”, usually tied to the Latin root meaning “of my birth” (as in natal)
From about 1830 onwards, the nation began to take on its modern meaning. The first element of this was linking a people with a state (in the manner of the American and the French revolutions – in fact, the “principle of nationality” comes to the fore in the “Age of Revolutions”.
This can be summarized by the equations NATION = STATE = PEOPLE
This makes nation territorial (where before it might be, but it might also be, like the “nation of Israel”, strictly ethnic or familial), because of the territorial nature of states.
Part of the point of this equation was a demand for government by the people (Mill’s treatment of nationalism comes in his On Representative Government [ironically, though, the features he picked out as definitive of a nation – ethnicity, common language, religion, common historical memories – are not part of the revolutionary conception).
The French revolution, in demanding popular representation was seen as anti-nationalistic (in the old sense) because it explicitly did not mention particular territories (and also because it was not tied to a particular language – Alsation speakers could still be French, although (21) French citizens had to show a willingness to learn French)
The German writer Richard Bockh, on the other hand, insisted on language as the basis of nationality (this suited German interests well )
Thus, two different conceptions of the nation in operation at the time:
(c.f., Renan’s question, “why is Holland a nation and Hanover and the Grand Duchy of Parma not?” )
Hobsbawm’s answer to (1): primarily economic. Adam Smith uses the term “nation” in his great work The Wealth of Nations simply as a territorial state. The paradox is that such things, on the face of it seem barriers to economic development, or at least, irrelevant to it, given that the units of economy are individuals (and occasionally firms) (see Cairnes, Schonberg, and Cannon quotes ) That said, there are some instrumental advantages to having nations, even from the point of view of classical economics – see Molinari and Say 
This economic definition of the nation yielded the threshold principle that a nation must be of a particular size. However, this affected the answers to question (2) – the Welsh are ruled out as nationalities, as should the Irish, although Mill  suggests that they are sufficiently numerous. It also gives us the term Balkanization as a term of abuse for too-small states forming .
In this period liberals were upward-nationalists – that is, in favour of smaller groups unifying into a (perhaps multicultural) nation. This was seen as progress towards the ideal of world unity (see Mill’s “sulk on his own rocks” quote )
Liberals could still endorse measures to protect minority languages within a larger federation, but only really as a “pet” project, or as a badge of multicultural honour – if the minorities ever developed a separatist consciousness, they would cease to be regarded so fondly . And indeed, they were expected to understand that the absorption of the minority language and culture into the majority would be an inevitable, and not necessarily bad event (See Kautsky’s “old piece of inherited family furniture” .
Answer to question (3): Provided a group passed the size threshold, possession of 3 criteria guaranteed it nation status:
SUM: status of nation from point of view of liberalism in the period 1830-1880:
This was the thinking behind the “principle of nationality” used to carve up Europe in this period. After that carve-up, however, new nations were not expected to emerge, at least, except insofar as already existing states made their people into a common nationality (c.f. d’Azeglio, “We have made Italy, now we have to make Italians”, and Pilsudski “it is the state which makes the nation and not the nation the state” [44/5]). BUT (unexpectedly), after 1880 nationalism became a powerful political force because common people, for the first time, acquired national consciousness. How did this happen?
Chapter 2: Popular proto-nationalism 
“Why and how could a concept so remote from the real experience of most human beings as ‘national patriotism’ become such a powerful political force so quickly?” 
You cannot point to the natural communities (families, villages, etc.) familiar to all humans throughout time, because nations differ from these in size, scale and nature. They are, as Benedict Anderson put it, imagined communities.
However, perhaps there are certain communal sentiments that lend themselves ideally to being converted to or marshaled in favour of, nationalism. Call these proto-national sentiments, and they can either be supra-local (that is, uniting disparate communities, like belief in the Virgin Mary), or springing from local political communities.
HOWEVER: proto-national sentiments do not necessarily lead to national sentiments. Although the Jews are now nationalistic, they were able to live scattered around under various political systems in different countries right up until the “very end of the nineteenth century” preserving their sense of common Jewishness without calling for a Jewish State . (Still true of Muslims .)
So what does constitute proto-nationalism? This is a difficult question to answer because it must be located in the minds of the illiterate, because it is a popular sentiment, and before the 20th century, the vast majority of mankind was illiterate.
I. Language [51-63]
II. Ethnicity [63-67]
III. Religion [67-71]
IV. Icons [71-73]
V. Consciousness of belonging to a lasting political entity [73-4]
Nationalism and proto-nationalism can coincide
BUT: “Proto-nationalism alone is clearly not enough to form nationalities, nations, let alone states”  because:
1. The number of national movements is “patently much smaller” than the number of human groups meeting criteria of potential nationhood and than the number of groups who have proto-nationalist suggestion V. (Gellner: the apparent universal ideological domination of nationalism today is a sort of optical illusion, because a world of nations couldn’t exist because so many would overlap )
2. Proto-nationalist sentiments inessential to establishing patriotism once a state is founded – US and Australia show that once established, a state can produce national sentiments where no candidates existed before (see also quotes on p. 44) – although, of course, this does not automatically happen (especially where existing competing proto-nationalist sentiment could undermine the state).
3. We can never prove that proto-nationalist sentiments really did exist in the masses, because their thoughts are unrecorded.
Chapter 3: The government perspective 
Characteristic features of the modern state that made it novel:
1. a (preferably unbroken) territory over all of whose inhabitants it ruled
2. separated from other territories by clearly distinct borders or frontiers
3. ruled over and administered those inhabitants directly, not through other rulers or intermediate autonomous corporations
4. Sought to impose the same institutional and administrative arrangements over the whole territory (thereby intervening in the lives of even the most lowly peasants in unprecedented ways)
5. ...but not necessarily (after the Age of Revolution) the same religious or ‘secular-ideological’ ones.
6. Unlike, e.g., feudal systems, needed to take notice of the opinions of its subjects because
The transformation whereby the citizen was daily exposed to state representatives and the state had much greater information on and ways to contact each citizen posed two major kinds of political problem for ruling classes:
required a numerous body [see 82 for numbers – e.g., 1.5 million in Germany in 1907] of literate agents, who can communicate both with each other and the general public (therefore requiring language standardization)
Direct loyalty to, and identification with, the state and
Previously either loyalty was not required (citizens never conscripted, e.g.) or ensured by non-voluntary intermediaries like religion and social hierarchy (“God bless the squire and his relations...”  ). BUT now democracy implied that loyalty was voluntary, and that it demanded something of the citizenry, it was no longer a sure thing.
Need for states to adapt and encourage “civic religion” of patriotism because:
1. Between 1780 and 1815 most states had been transformed, so that traditional guarantors of loyalty (dynastic legitimacy, divine ordination, religious right, continuity of rule) had been undermined. (Although: hereditary rule did not seem to depend on country of origin: princes in turn of the 20th century Europe could more easily be born out of their country of rule than heads of international corporations now)
2. The fact that a state had to have well-define borders required exacting and specific loyalties, suggesting an identification of nation and people.
3. Other institutions, rivals to the state, were gaining ground (e.g., class loyalty, the worker movements)
4. Other nations would poach citizens—Irish threat to United Kingdom [85-6]
Pure state-based patriotism (i.e. divorced from any notion of race, language or whatever, a subsumption of nationality under citizenship) can be effective just by the state existing a few years (is this Renan’s idea?) as evidenced by the fact the Finns were loyal to the Russians just because they’d been under their control. Also there are tools of inculcating it, in particular primary (i.e., elementary) schools (see humorous example of national anthem )
HOWEVER, such patriotism could easily
(a) be controlled by ruling classes
(b) lapse into chauvinism (“my country – not yours”)- aided by the “pseudo science” of racism and by the novel fact of mass migrations 
See the “tragic paradox” of unfolding political and class consciousness  – led to masses of deaths in WWI.
Actually, though, state patriotism is most successfully engendered if both are combined: that is, manipulation from above coincides with a grass-roots sentiment. However, this merger between state patriotism and non-state nationalism is tricky. They are not necessarily compatible (the latter trades on a particular conception of the nation and allows for such notions as “un-American”), and also, given that modernization also presaged the development of minority nationalism, there are likely to be competing non-state nationalisms, so that favouring one will alienate the others .
That said, modernization and its requirement of standardized vernacular makes favoring one almost inevitable.
pp. 96-100: the problem of nation and language.
Linguistic nationalism is about the language of “office and school” – e.g. of Welsh 
Problem of asking language on a census: automatically makes a political issue out of it, and can encourage minority nationalism by forcing citizens to choose their nationality.
(Interesting question: can one discover one’s nationality to be different from what one might have thought?)