An event organised by the Subaltern and Decolonising Citizenship Research Network at CRASSH.
Engin Isin (School of Politics and International Relations, Queen Mary University of London and University of London in Paris)
15 October 2020
Decolonising citizenship – deconstructing its universalism (by revealing an able-bodied, male, propertied, white, heterosexual, and Christian figure), historicising its modernity (by exposing slavery and colonialism in its development), and overturning its exclusions (by making rights claims) – radically transformed the modern state and its regime of rights. Yet the reaction and opposition to it as a social movement, as a body of knowledge, and an ethical perspective have been swift and severe. By drawing on recent work on the colonial and imperial origins of modern citizenship as an institution of domination and subaltern acts that challenged this domination, in this seminar I will discuss political and theoretical difficulties of decolonising citizenship, conflicting projects it spawns into, and the oppositions it elicits.