Building the State through the Nation: Dual Citizenship Policies in Central and Eastern Europe
Sociology and Anthropology University of Windsor Windsor, Canada
Panel 1: Citizenship and Governance (Chair: Professor Virginie Guiraudon)
My paper provides a historical-sociological investigation of post-communist dual citizenship policies and practices in Central and Eastern Europe, proposing to conceive of citizenship as a means of state building. While dual citizenship policies in Western Europe generally took an inclusionary form, generated by the stringent need to incorporate and assimilate foreign immigrants, and to come to terms with their colonial and world expanding capitalist past, in Central and Eastern Europe they have essentially been differentialist, putting emphasis on ethno-cultural distinctions and privileged historical relationship with a state.
In an attempt to synthesize the dominant motives governing the strategies chosen by these states, in the second part of the paper dual citizenship practices are inventoried according to a typology that reveals important historically built and practically shaped variation and significance of the state rationalities involved.
Finally, an examination of asymmetries in dual citizenship, relating both to the eased and privileged access to citizenship to co-ethnics abroad or expatriates wishing to return, and to the degree to which states accept their emigrated citizens to become dual nationals, as compared to their reluctance to accept dual citizenship at naturalized citizens, aims to further the state building argument, and to point to the tensions inherent in dual citizenship legislation.