IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Nationalism, cosmopolitanism and statelessness: An interview with Craig Calhoun


  • Barzoo Eliassi

    (University of Lund, Sweden)


This interview with Professor Craig Calhoun expands on issues of nationalism and cosmopolitanism in relation to the question of statelessness. Since the 1990s, Calhoun has worked on nationalism, ethnicity and cosmopolitanism. For Calhoun, nations still matter despite post-national and cosmopolitan elaboration and repudiation of so-called parochial and provincialised identities like nation or national identity and citizenship. In this interview, Calhoun dis-cusses the material, political and cultural situations of the Kurds in the Middle East and the role of Kurdish nationalism in the context of statelessness. Calhoun finds class-based understanding of inequalities between the Kurds and their dominant others in the Middle East as problematic and incomplete since the cultural, political and material inequalities are intimately interlinked in rendering the Kurds to a subordinated position in the states they inhabit. The interview also engages with diasporic identities and examines how countries of residence can impinge on the identity formation of diasporas and how they obstruct or facilitate migrants translating their citizenship status into the right to have rights (Arendt). An important issue that Calhoun discusses is that there are both asymmetrical power relations between dominated (Kurdish) and dominating nationalisms (Turkish, Iraqi, Iranian and Syrian) and within the same nationalisms.

Suggested Citation

  • Barzoo Eliassi, 2014. "Nationalism, cosmopolitanism and statelessness: An interview with Craig Calhoun," Kurdish Studies, Transnational Press London, UK, vol. 2(1), pages 61-74, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:mig:ksjrnl:v:2:y:2014:i:1:p:61-74

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mig:ksjrnl:v:2:y:2014:i:1:p:61-74. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (TPLondon). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.