Q: The text covers all areas and ideas of the subject appropriately and provides an effective index and/or glossary
This is not your standard introductory textbook, but a provocative and intellectual engagement into the subjects covered. This text critically analyzes both the good and the bad concerning the key concepts discussed. Drawing strongly on a philosophical and theoretical framework, the authors provide an adeqaute lens for students to gain insight into nationalism, self-nationalism and/or succession. I appreciated how they critically approached concepts, like "community" that can be manipulated or poliically taken advantage of due to their ambitious nature. Furthermore, the text is useful in that it makes reference to many of the familiar theoretical arguments and scholars prominent to this discourse, allowing undergraduate students to get an introductory level of theory if they are not yet fully accustomed to it. For example, they discuss the objective vs. subjective definition of nation in their attempt to contextualize it within a criteria of "nationness."
Comprehensiveness Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: Content is accurate, error-free and unbiased
The text quotes from political theories, such as Hobsbawn, but uses a secondary citation rather than referring to the original text, which in this case seems as if it would be simple to do, conferring a weakness in resource gathering. Nevertheless, the authors use a wide range of prominent theorists, across disciplines, creating a well-rounded and non-biases analysis that is overall, error-free.
Content Accuracy Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: Content is up-to-date, but not in a way that will quickly make the text obsolete within a short period of time. The text is written and/or arranged in such a way that necessary updates will be relatively easy and straightforward to implement
The text is up-to-date in that it addresses the subject in a longer timeframe, highlighting issues people and states faced throughout history. Contemporarily, the authors incorporate examples, such as the concept of "queer nation" that would not make the text obsolete within a short period of time. Furthermore, the text was written in a straightforward manner.
Relevance Rating: 5 out of 5
Q: The text is written in lucid, accessible prose, and provides adequate context for any jargon/technical terminology used
There is a bit of theoretical jargon that is thrown into the text without a proper explanation. For example, they note various school so thought, such as "contract theorists" and "utilitarians," as well as the names of theorists, without accompanying descriptions. Furthermore, acronyms are casually mentioned, such as "FLN" without reference to a full name. Therefore, this text may be more appropriate for students who can easily ask questions regarding this terminology, or who are already accustomed to it.
Clarity Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: The text is internally consistent in terms of terminology and framework
I felt as if the text sometimes jumped around a bit, and could have been more consistent in structuring a framework that provided a bit more clarity. For example, the rise of the modern nation-state is the historical foundation for this text, as they so mention, yet, it is placed within the community section, rather than receiving a deserving section of its own at the beginning of the text. This would perhaps not be an issue I was drawn to, if not for the very small and rather undeserving sections near the end of only a paragraph or two.
Consistency Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: The text is easily and readily divisible into smaller reading sections that can be assigned at different points within the course (i.e., enormous blocks of text without subheadings should be avoided). The text should not be overly self-referential, and should be easily reorganized and realigned with various subunits of a course without presenting much disruption to the reader.
I felt as if the text was over-sectioned at times. Some of the sections were only a paragraph and could have been included in the former sections. Nonetheless, their modules created a "clean" look to the text, allowing for an easy read.
Modularity Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: The topics in the text are presented in a logical, clear fashion
The topics were presented in a logical and clear fashion.
Organization Rating: 5 out of 5
Q: The text is free of significant interface issues, including navigation problems, distortion of images/charts, and any other display features that may distract or confuse the reader
The links did not work, and I received an error when redirected to the website from the PDF. Moreover, some of the pictures were disturbingly blurry. However, if they did/do work, then I enjoy the idea of a hyperlink interaction with the reader.
Interface Rating: 3 out of 5
Q: The text contains no grammatical errors
Other than some awkward sentence structure, more so near the beginning of the text, there were not many grammatical errors I noticed. There was a contraction placed mid-text (don't), which I thought was inconsistent as they were not used anywhere else, and some repetition of phrases, such as "political theorists," which was used multiple times in one paragraph. Also, maybe another proofread would be helpful, as there seemed to be some unnecessary commas, and random code placed within the text.
Grammar Rating: 3 out of 5
Q: The text is not culturally insensitive or offensive in any way. It should make use of examples that are inclusive of a variety of races, ethnicities, and backgrounds
The text is not culturally insensitive; however, there was some overuse of examples, such as Israel/Palestine. Although I understand they are the typical examples, I would have enjoyed to see less redundancy, and more challenging/controversial notions of empirical examples.
Cultural Relevance Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: Are there any other comments you would like to make about this book, for example, its appropriateness in a Canadian context or specific updates you think need to be made?
Focusing prominently on nationalism, Quebec serves as a solid example, and thus, was incorporated in differing contexts throughout the text, making it appropriate for a Canadian context.