You’d be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t consider their nationality as part of their identity, either as a large or small factor. The assumed reasoning behind this is that people like to take pride in where they are from, and there are certain characteristics that we assume people have based on their nationality.
When you travel to a foreign country, people often take a keen interest in where you’re originally from. We like to believe that by knowing where someone grew up, we’ll have a better idea of who they are.
Without a doubt, nationality holds a high importance to many people on a global basis. I proudly identify myself as Canadian because I identify that as my home, where I developed my personal beliefs, and where I feel safe, happy, and welcome.
It’s the understanding that I may have been a very different person if I had grown up somewhere else that strikes me. Would I have the same sense of humour or moral belief system if I had been raised somewhere else in the world? Likely not.
Nationality matters because it does define who we are. Not because of stereotypes, but because where we grew up impacts who we are. Who we meet, what we’re taught, and social norms shape us as people, and nationality goes hand in hand with that.