Skip to main navigation menu Skip to main content Skip to site footer


Vol. 1 No.2: December, 2013

Formation of Modern State Identity: Social and Cultural Dimensions

  • Iuliia Tsyrfa, PhD
February 29, 2016


The article aims to stress the importance of cultural factor influencing the formation of
modern states’ identities. Studying the formation of state identity through the consideration of
exogenous (globalization, establishment of interactions between different states, geopolitical
situation) and endogenous (level of social interactions between people, historical memory,
common destiny, cultural heritage) factors, the author concludes on the dominance of internal
factors influencing this process. It is substantiated that the latters, maintained by the whole
society, help the state to act as a unitary actor in the international arena. However, the state can
construct its own identity only when the so-called We-feeling is supported by all members of its
society. Today only a few countries are considered as nation states because their societies are
formed by different ethne. If the cultures of some ethnic groups clash inside the country, the
latter is unable to build its own identity. Taking into account the effects of two possible
scenarios of cultures’ coexistence, it is offered a few models which allow the social identity to
be constructed. They include the policy of multiculturalism supported with the state,
interexistence of groups, and the collective strategy of ethnic social competition.As a result, it is
assumed that, while any of these models is applied the state should play a dominant role
promoting the erasement of intercultural contradictions existing between different ethnic groups.
The research itself and the conclusions made are based on the usage of inductive, comparative,
analytical and historical methods.