In the early 1990s, ‘citizenship’ had made a successful entry into the academic debate. It had become a ‘buzz word among thinkers on all points of the political spectrum’, according to Will Kymlicka and Wayne Norman, who carried out an overview of the academic literature at that time (Kymlicka & Norman 1994: 352). On the level of theory, the notion of ‘citizenship’ integrated community membership on the one hand and justice on the other. On the level of society, interest in citizenship was ignited by developments such as the rise of multiculturalism and nationalism, the backlash against the welfare state, and increasing voter apathy. And, indeed, quality and attitudes of citizens matter, the authors noted: without a sense of identity, the ability to get on with and work with others from different backgrounds, a desire to participate in the political process and a willingness to show restraint and responsibility in the public domain, democracies become difficult to govern. The authors were not too hopeful about an overall theory of citizenship arising, as they saw all attempts to create ‘good citizens’ succumb under good intentions. But they did stress the need for shared citizenship, to supersede rival identities based on ethnicity, as a source of unity in a multinational country (376).
KeywordsWelfare State Social Cohesion Productive Space Active Citizen European Social Survey
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