Handbook of Political Citizenship and Social Movements
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Handbook of Political Citizenship and Social Movements

Edited by Hein-Anton van der Heijden

This Handbook uniquely collates the results of several decades of academic research in these two important fields. The expert contributions successively address the different forms of political citizenship and current approaches and recent developments in social movement studies. Salient social movements in recent history are explored in depth, covering the environmental, women’s, international human rights, urban, Tea Party, and animal rights movements. Social movements and political citizenship in the ‘global South’: China, India, Africa, and the Arab World, are discussed, presenting a novel empirical insight into these fields of study.
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Chapter 5: Multicultural citizenship

Narzanin Massoumi and Nasar Meer


It is a sign of our times that it seems clichéd to state that minorities have increasingly ‘challenged’ the rights and status conferred upon them by various programmes of democratic citizenship. In this chapter we elaborate why this is so and how multicultural political theory and social movements literature can be brought together to provide an account that helps us to understand this. There is, of course, already a very deep and expansive body of literature on the idea and practice of citizenship, something that reflects an incredible variety in its philosophical, legal, social and political relevance. Our objective in this chapter is to discuss how citizenship has been framed and challenged, and the ways in which this relates to prevailing liberal and multicultural philosophies, as well as broader political struggles and social activism. Having established this we conclude with a consideration of how multicultural and social movement literature can be synthesized in the theorization of contemporary citizenship, and what the limitations are in doing so.

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