Imagining governments and citizenship unbeholden to rules of birth-that is, cleaving the state from the family (i.e. the nation)-is the single most important thought experiment in political theory since John Rawls asked us to consider justice from a position of veiled ignorance. Jacqueline Stevens is not just a punchy provacateur, she is a careful scholar and an engaging writer. States without Nations is a must read for any scholar of the politics, sociology, or legal studies of the state-and anyone concerned with distributive justice.(Dalton Conley, Dean for the Social Sciences, New York University)
No myth needs exploding more urgently than that of the tight association of state with nation, of the exigencies of governance with the idea of people defined by culture and common descent. No misconception has done more damage in modern political theory. And no theorist is better positioned to explode this myth-in its birthright, where it lives, in its premises of blood and land and birth-than Jacqueline Stevens.(Jeremy Waldron, University Professor, New York University School of Law)
States Without Nations is a brutal exposé of the violent and mutually implicating underpinnings of liberal theory and national identity, and it constitutes nothing less than an early attempt to reconceptualize and reorganize world citizenship anew. I find it brilliant, bold, breathtaking, pioneering, far-reaching, and visionary. There's nothing else quite like it.(John Evan Seery, professor of politics, Pomona College)
States without Nations is a scathing indictment of kinship-based membership. In an argument as unrelenting as it is brilliant, Jacqueline Stevens challenges feminists, liberals, and, indeed, anyone who values peace and security, to join her in recognizing and rejecting kinship as the ultimate source of violence. This original and much-needed intervention will reshape debates in international relations, political science, and women's studies.(Jodi Dean, author of Democracy and Other Neoliberal Fantasies)
Stevens is provocative in rethinking many assumptions people take for granted.... Highly recommended.(Choice)
The breadth and creativity of [Stevens's] arguments are refreshing.... A welcome addition to the citizenship literature.(Elizabeth F. Cohen Perspectives on Politics)
While the book's learned and wide-ranging arguments do not always convince, they invariably inform and provoke, startle and rouse; States without Nations is a stunning work of radical theoretical imagination.(Jason Frank Theory and Event)
A new theory of nation and identity.--This text refers to the Digital edition.