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Title: Constructing and contesting the good British citizen : an investigation of the contemporary citizenship regime as discursive practice
Author: Lewis, Rachel F.
ISNI:       0000 0004 7227 8837
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2017
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The last two decades have seen major interventions in naturalisation legislation across much of the ‘industrialised’ world, with successive UK administrations introducing and refining citizenship tests, language proficiency requirements, and ceremonial performances in an explicit bid to elevate the acquisition of citizen-status from a ‘right’ to a ‘privilege’ (Home Office, 2013a). In this thesis, I draw on theorisations of the border as a geopolitical, a biopolitical, and a ‘neuropolitical’ (Isin, 2004) phenomenon, and thus conceptualise these newly-instituted ‘citizenisation’ (Fortier, 2017) processes as a political project, as part of an assemblage of bordering practices through which to heighten and manage the anxieties of the neurotic subject within the securitised state, and to realise the nation state in domopolitical terms as a home (Walters, 2004). While discourse researchers have certainly provided much important empirical insight into the strategies employed in contemporary citizenship documentation, and in the broader discursive contexts in which these citizenship regimes are situated (e.g. Wodak et al, 2009; Löwenheim and Gazit, 2009), I argue that the citizenship regime cannot be understood as wholly constituted through the linguistic practices of élite policy and media actors, but should instead be conceptualised more broadly as discursive practice: as a complex set of linguistic, material, and symbolic practices. From this premise, I situate my research within a particular local context, drawing together a data set which takes into account policy documents and testing materials, observations of testing and ceremonial rituals, and interviews with twenty actors involved in the production of the citizenship regime, including citizenship officials and recent and prospective citizens. Articulating themes across the data set, I look to the ways in which both the state and the Good citizen-subject are performed and secured within this discursive landscape, and find important moments of disruption and contestation to this dominant discursive formation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: JN101 Great Britain