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What’s the big deal?: naturalisation and the politics of desire

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What’s the big deal? naturalisation and the politics of desire. / Fortier, Anne-Marie.

In: Citizenship Studies, Vol. 17, No. 6-7, 2013, p. 697-711.

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Fortier, Anne-Marie. / What’s the big deal? naturalisation and the politics of desire. In: Citizenship Studies. 2013 ; Vol. 17, No. 6-7. pp. 697-711.

Bibtex

@article{035ee0ef52f8442fb0ff823412543aa9,
title = "What{\textquoteright}s the big deal?: naturalisation and the politics of desire",
abstract = "This article takes the naturalisation process as avantage point from which to consider how citizenship constitutes a site of emotional investment not only on the part of applicants and {\textquoteleft}new{\textquoteright} citizens, but also on the part of the state. The premise of this article is that naturalisation is more than solely the admission of foreigners to the position and rights of citizenship, and it approaches naturalisation as a state practice that needs to be understood within a politics of desire. The article asks three questions: What makes naturalisation a thinkable and desirable means of acquiring citizenship? Second, what do practices of naturalisation tell us about {\textquoteleft}the state{\textquoteright}s attachment to particular embodiments of desirable citizens{\textquoteright} (Somerville 2005: 661)? Third, {\textquoteleft}who may desire the state{\textquoteright}s desire{\textquoteright} (Butler 2002: 22)? Using policy documents and auto-ethnographic material, the article examines practices through which the state selects its own objects of desire and produces them as citizens, while it also produces itself as desirable. The article concludes that naturalisation distinguishes desirable from less desirable citizens through fantasies of English proficiency and birthright citizenship. In addition, the staged performance of the citizenship ceremony assures the state of its desirability by subsuming {\textquoteleft}as if{\textquoteright} enactments of citizenship. ",
keywords = "naturalisation, citizenship, politics of desire , fantasy, UK",
author = "Anne-Marie Fortier",
year = "2013",
doi = "10.1080/13621025.2013.780761",
language = "English",
volume = "17",
pages = "697--711",
journal = "Citizenship Studies",
issn = "1362-1025",
publisher = "Routledge",
number = "6-7",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - What’s the big deal?

T2 - naturalisation and the politics of desire

AU - Fortier, Anne-Marie

PY - 2013

Y1 - 2013

N2 - This article takes the naturalisation process as avantage point from which to consider how citizenship constitutes a site of emotional investment not only on the part of applicants and ‘new’ citizens, but also on the part of the state. The premise of this article is that naturalisation is more than solely the admission of foreigners to the position and rights of citizenship, and it approaches naturalisation as a state practice that needs to be understood within a politics of desire. The article asks three questions: What makes naturalisation a thinkable and desirable means of acquiring citizenship? Second, what do practices of naturalisation tell us about ‘the state’s attachment to particular embodiments of desirable citizens’ (Somerville 2005: 661)? Third, ‘who may desire the state’s desire’ (Butler 2002: 22)? Using policy documents and auto-ethnographic material, the article examines practices through which the state selects its own objects of desire and produces them as citizens, while it also produces itself as desirable. The article concludes that naturalisation distinguishes desirable from less desirable citizens through fantasies of English proficiency and birthright citizenship. In addition, the staged performance of the citizenship ceremony assures the state of its desirability by subsuming ‘as if’ enactments of citizenship.

AB - This article takes the naturalisation process as avantage point from which to consider how citizenship constitutes a site of emotional investment not only on the part of applicants and ‘new’ citizens, but also on the part of the state. The premise of this article is that naturalisation is more than solely the admission of foreigners to the position and rights of citizenship, and it approaches naturalisation as a state practice that needs to be understood within a politics of desire. The article asks three questions: What makes naturalisation a thinkable and desirable means of acquiring citizenship? Second, what do practices of naturalisation tell us about ‘the state’s attachment to particular embodiments of desirable citizens’ (Somerville 2005: 661)? Third, ‘who may desire the state’s desire’ (Butler 2002: 22)? Using policy documents and auto-ethnographic material, the article examines practices through which the state selects its own objects of desire and produces them as citizens, while it also produces itself as desirable. The article concludes that naturalisation distinguishes desirable from less desirable citizens through fantasies of English proficiency and birthright citizenship. In addition, the staged performance of the citizenship ceremony assures the state of its desirability by subsuming ‘as if’ enactments of citizenship.

KW - naturalisation

KW - citizenship

KW - politics of desire

KW - fantasy

KW - UK

U2 - 10.1080/13621025.2013.780761

DO - 10.1080/13621025.2013.780761

M3 - Journal article

VL - 17

SP - 697

EP - 711

JO - Citizenship Studies

JF - Citizenship Studies

SN - 1362-1025

IS - 6-7

ER -