The transformation of modern citizenship ethnic minorities and the politics of citizenship in Germany
This study examines through a case study of Germany and its politics of citizenship vis-a-vls members of ethnic minorities a) the deficiencies of a nationally bound concept of citizenship in countries of immigration; b) the transformation of citizenship into a concept that is increasingly oblivious to national borders as a result of international migration and ethnic heterogeneity. This is a development that takes place despite strenuous efforts by the nation state to maintain a nationally bounded notion of citizenship; c) finally, the role of members of ethnic minorities in inducing this transformation will be analysed by focussing on the case of Berliners of Turkish origin. The thesis is an original contribution to the development of sociological accounts of citizenship for three reasons: First, it integrates three central debates around citizenship - as regards legal status, rights and participation. Second, it contributes to the development of a new dimension to citizenship studies by analysing the social construction of citizenship from below. Finally, it provides important empirical findings that illuminate current debates on citizenship which have so far been highly abstract and theoretical. The thesis is based on empirical research that was carried out in Berlin in October/November 1996, from April to June 1997 and in May 1998. In this context, I conducted interviews with civil servants, officials and politicians at the national and city level; with members/employees of social initiatives, academics and journalists. Furthermore, I carried out qualitative, semistructured interviews with a) young Berliners of Turkish origin, and with persons of the same background who are b) active members of German political parties and trade unions; c) active in immigrant organisations.