Rethinking 'citizenship' in the postcolony

Robins, Steven, Cornwall, Andrea and von Lieres, Bettina (2008) Rethinking 'citizenship' in the postcolony. Third World Quarterly, 29 (6). pp. 1069-1086. ISSN 01436597

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This paper argues for an approach to researching citizenship and democracy that begins not from normative convictions but from everyday experiences in particular social, cultural and historical contexts. The paper starts with a consideration of the ways in which the terms 'democracy' and 'citizenship' have been used in the discourses and approaches taken within mainstream studies of citizenship and democracy, drawing attention to some of the conceptual blind spots that arise. We call for more attention to be paid to contextual understandings of the politics of everyday life, and to locating state, ngo and donor rhetorics and programmes promoting 'active citizenship' and 'participatory governance' within that politics. It is this kind of understanding, we suggest, that, by revealing the limits of the normativities embedded in these discourses, can provide a more substantive basis for rethinking citizenship from the perspectives of citizens themselves.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Anthropology
Depositing User: Andrea Cornwall
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 15:04
Last Modified: 06 Jun 2013 14:14
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