A nation is a form of self-defined cultural and social community. One of the most influential doctrines in Western Europe and the Western hemisphere since the late eighteenth century is that all humans are divided into groups called nations.
Nationhood is the starting point for the Ideology of nationalism. Members of a "nation" share a common identity, and usually a common origin. A nation extends across generations, and includes the dead as full members. More vaguely, nations are assumed to include future generations.
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