The present article critically evaluates Hroch’s theory in light of the Sindhi and Baloch national movements in Pakistan. At the heart of the issue are the social preconditions and the stage theory which Hroch posits to comprehend both the formation of nations and origins of the national movement. As far as social preconditions are concerned, the article contests the overarching notion in Hroch’s theory that only when a complete class structure develops that the nation comes into being and the national movement itself is successful. With respect to the stage theory, the article brings into contention the variable of “intra-ethnic conflict” or the conflicts which inheres within nations. This makes the linear progression from Stage A to B to C, as Hroch identifies, difficult to achieve because within a single nation multiple national movements exist. In such a scenario, one can depict a stage theory for each national movement within a single nation. Finally, I argue, that in order to understand nation formation and national movements, it is imperative that the ideological orientation of national movements, or in other words, nationalism should also be put in proper perspective.
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