Iycee Charles de Gaulle Summary National identity and nationality Essay

National identity and nationality Essay

National identity and nationality

National identity of a group of individuals refers to the features possessed by the group that differentiates them from members of another group. In this group, each individual has a sense of belonging to it. In this concept, the individual does not necessarily need to be physically present in the country which it wants to identify with. The individual might not even be s citizen of the country, but still strives to identify with all the activities performed in that country.

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The other concept – nationality on the other hand has to do with the rights which an individual can exercise in a particular country. It specifies the relationship that an individual has with his/her state of origin. It determines whether an individual can vote and be voted for. The nationality of an individual can be established based on the place of birth, or his/her bloodline. An individual can also acquire the nationality of a country by naturalization.

Having defined these two concepts, in comparing the two, we discover that is a matter of choice for an individual to have a national identity. This means that an individual might decide not to identify with his/her country of origin. On the other hand, an individual by default possesses a nationality, which he can decide to change later in life if he wishes to.

Also, the national identity of an individual does not confer such rights as the ability to vote and be voted for, unemployment benefits, healthcare schemes and other social programmes designed for the nationals of that country. However, an individual is entitled to all these as long as he/she is a bona fide national of that country.

In conclusion, the two concepts of nationality and national identity are two different concepts that do not mean exactly the same thing. National identity is by will while nationality is by right.