Design and National Identity

Design and National Identity

by Javier Gimeno-Martínez

Javier Gimeno-Martínez is an assistant professor at the VU University Amsterdam in the Netherlands. His work has been published in various journals including ‘Interiors’ and ‘Design and Culture’, and he has contributed chapters to several edited volumes. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Bloomsbury Academic, 2016
  • DOI:
  • ISBN:
    978-1-4742-8730-2 (online)

    978-1-4725-9104-3 (hardback)

    978-1-4725-9103-6 (paperback)

    978-1-4725-9105-0 (epdf)

    978-1-4725-9106-7 (epub)
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Design and National Identity
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This important study introduces the key theories of national identity, and relates them to the broad fields of product, graphic and fashion design.

Javier Gimeno-Martinez approaches the inter-relationship between national identity and cultural production from two perspectives: the distinctive characteristics of a nation's output, and the consumption of design products within a country as a means of generating a national design landscape. Using case studies ranging from stamps in nineteenth century Russian-occupied Finland, to Coca-Cola as an ‘American’ drink in modern Trinidad and Tobago, he addresses concepts of essentialism, constructivism, geography and multiculturality, and considers the works of key theorists, including Benedict Anderson, Eric Hobsbawm and Doreen Massey.

This illuminating book offers the first comprehensive account of how national identity and cultural policy have shaped design, while suggesting that traditional formations of the ‘national’ are increasingly unsustainable in an age of globalisation, migration and cultural diversity.