Why do we have nation states today?

Q: Why do we have nation states today?

A: To suppress the extremely violent confessional civil wars that followed the Reformation and the counter-reformation.

The Q & A is based upon the following text from a Nov. 27, 2014 Open Democracy article entitled “IS – a threat to the structure of international law?”:

“Why do we have nation states today? To suppress the extremely violent confessional civil wars that followed the Reformation and the counter-reformation.

“Was there no such thing as international law before the seventeenth century? Indeed there was. However its structure was quite different. In the Holy Roman Empire, the Pope’s auctoritas ruled together with the Emperor’s potestas, in an order known as Respublica Christiana. The relation between international law and theology is not only a matter of historical concern. All attempts to universalize norms, human rights being the prime example, have brought with them a metaphysics that reproduce theological structures.”

[End of excerpt]

It’s an interesting article.

 

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