National Narcissism offers a groundbreaking anthropological and sociological approach
to nationalism through an exposé of the belief systems and psychology of extreme nationalists
for whom nationalism is a form of religion. This theoretical approach is illustrated
with examples primarily taken from Hungary, with a special focus in two chapters on
the role of gender in nationalism. The state of politics and society in Hungary is
also examined in a way that steps beyond the usual simplistic, flat narratives of
'what Hungarians are like', by stressing the broad variety of viewpoints current in
Hungarian society, the milieu in which a small minority of extreme nationalists are
able to make their voice heard out of proportion to their numbers or political support.
The theory offered by National Narcissism has wide-ranging implications for the future
study of extremist nationalism in nation-states throughout the world. Sociologists,
anthropologists, nationalism studies specialists, social-psychologists, and historians
of the recent past in Hungary will find that this theoretical book, richly illustrated
with examples from Hungarian society, challenges positive and negative stereotypes
about nationalism, extremism, post-communism, central and eastern Europe, the European
Union and, not least, about Hungarians themselves.