Liberal nationalism, citizenship and integration

Sune Lægaard*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Liberal nationalists such as Will Kymlicka and David Miller have endorsed the "revaluation of citizenship" currently expressed in more stringent naturalization requirements across western states. Kymlicka and Miller claim that such measures are "nation-building" policies and only make sense as attempts at "cultural integration" of immigrants. The chapter discusses liberal nationalism as a view that assigns normative significance to one sort of group membership, nationality, for the purpose of regulating access to another kind of group, namely the political community of citizens. The chapter discusses in which ways the recent "revaluated" naturalization requirements might be related to the aims of liberal nationalism. It is argued that "revaluated" naturalization requirements can indeed be characterised as a kind of nation-building policies and as attempts at cultural integration, but that the applicable sense of nationality is too "thin" to serve the functions shared nationality is supposed to according to liberal nationalism. Even if the there is no positive connection between liberal nationalism and revaluated citizenship, such policies might still be preferable on the basis of liberal nationalism. The paper raises some doubts about this possibility as well, however, since "revaluated" naturalization requirements are exclusionary in a way that might be counterproductive from a liberal nationalist point of view.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGroup Theory : Classes, Representation and Connections, and Applications
Number of pages19
PublisherNova Science Publishers
Publication date2010
ISBN (Print)9781608761753
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes

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