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Nationalism and Immigration

Over the past few decades, nationalism has been maligned as myopic and racist. Yet the Torah and the modern Zionist enterprise assume the primacy of the nation-state over a universalist one. Using Biblical and Western sources, this course will explore the appeal of universalism, its downsides, and the moral good that only the nation-state can offer. This, however, does not mean that the nation is free from its own demons. While promoting the nation-state, the Bible is well aware of the ways that it can go awry. The most prominent shortcoming within a nation-state global order is the treatment of outsiders, including immigrants and new citizens. Just as America, Israel, and much of Europe are grappling with this question, the Bible did as well. As a book of political theory, it has much to teach us.