Analytical treatment of nationalism, of the sort needed to frame world history teaching and comparative research, requires extension beyond historical accounts of specific episodes and the many available social science generalizations that tend to homogenize the phenomenon. Two points are crucial. The first is the historicity of nationalism as it moved away from traditional cultural definitions and political loyalties. The second is comparison of different types of nationalisms--or, more properly, different balances among complex components--in historical context. The comparative approach particularly engages most nationalisms as blends of innovation and conservative forces and, in the twentieth century, as sites for complex negotiations between westernizing and traditional emphases. These features reveal nationalism as a reflection of diverse civilizational histories, while raising questions about renewed competition with nationalism as a loyalty in the late twentieth century.