Claiming citizenship in the shadow of the state: violence and the making and unmaking of citizens in Rio de Janeiro

Wheeler, Joanna (2012) Claiming citizenship in the shadow of the state: violence and the making and unmaking of citizens in Rio de Janeiro. Doctoral thesis (DPhil), University of Sussex.

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Abstract

This thesis asks questions about the meanings and practices of citizenship, and how they change in a context of violence. Questions of citizenship are relevant because violence shifts the fundamental circumstances for citizenship. Much of the existing literature on participatory governance and democratisation assumes a certain degree of safety and security, which is a distant reality for people whose daily lives are ordered by violence and insecurity. The overarching question at its heart is: what does citizenship mean in a context of violence?

In order to answer this larger question, this thesis explores the following:

• How does violence shape how people perceive and practice their citizenship?
• How does a spatially‐specific context of violence and insecurity affect the way
that the state acts and intervenes? What are different forms of authority (both
legitimate and illegitimate) mediating the relationship of citizens with the state?
And how do these different relationships shape the prospects for citizens
claiming substantive rights?
• How can participatory action research be used to investigate citizenship in a
context of violence, where there are significant risks in speaking publicly about
power, violence, and democracy?

This thesis focuses on three specific dimensions of the citizen‐state relationship: a) the ways that the meanings of citizenship are formed (and the processes of socialisation that lead to a sense of citizenship); b) the ways that citizens are able to act in order to make claims on the state; the way that state and other forms of authority act in relation to citizens; and, c) the types of mediators that intervene between citizens and state institutions. The starting point for this analysis is the empirical reality of favelas in Rio de Janeiro, where power and patterns of authority operate in certain ways that are shaped by violence.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: Institute of Development Studies
Subjects: F History United States, Canada, Latin America > F2201 South America > F2501 Brazil
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races > HT0101 Urban groups. The city. Urban sociology
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 27 Jun 2012 06:21
Last Modified: 04 Sep 2015 13:43
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/39705

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