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Title: Experiencing migration, language policy and citizenship 'from below' : the case of Luxembourg
Author: Kremer, Joanna
ISNI:       0000 0004 6060 7496
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2017
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Since the turn of the 21st century, many EU countries have introduced language and/or civics tests in the context of citizenship and migration policy. Recent studies have critically analysed the discursive justifications of these language requirements and/or testing procedures in various EU member-states (Extra et al., 2009, Hogan-Brun et al., 2009). It has also been argued that the scope of language policy should be widened to include research on the experiences of people who are directly affected by formal ‘language policy mechanisms’ (Shohamy, 2009). Moreover, there have been calls for the discursive study of citizenship to broaden its range beyond the aspect of language testing in order to investigate how citizenship is enacted by individuals (Milani, 2015). This thesis responds to these recent trends by focusing on the case study of Luxembourg. In Luxembourg, a new law on ‘la nationalité luxembourgeoise’ (Luxembourgish ‘nationalité’) came into effect in 2009 which stipulates that applicants need to pass a Luxembourgish language test and attend ‘civics’ instruction lessons in order to become citizens. Drawing upon 27 semi-structured interviews conducted with recent applicants for citizenship, this thesis considers three aspects: it first asks how the participants construct their experiences of moving to Luxembourg. Secondly, it investigates how they discuss the language testing procedure and thirdly, it queries how the concept of citizenship is understood. Through thematic analysis and discourse analysis, this thesis shows that the participants discuss their experiences of moving to the country in a variety of different ways. Some participants for example talk about experiences of discrimination, others mention the attractiveness of Luxembourg. It also illustrates that there is a broad range of perceptions on the Luxembourgish language testing procedure. In addition to this, the analysis shows that the participants attach a wide range of meanings to citizenship and ‘Luxembourgishness.’ This thesis offers important insights into the complexities of how policy affects people’s lives and demonstrates the importance of combining the areas of migration studies, citizenship studies and language policy.
Supervisor: Horner, Kristine ; Bland, Caroline Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available