Aleksandra Lewicki: "The blind spots of liberal citizenship and integration policy"
Governments across Europe have stepped up their efforts to manage social diversity politically, often specifically targeting Muslim populations. Lewicki interrogates the policy tools that the British and German governments deploy to ‘integrate’ an increasingly stigmatized and racialized population, zooming in on whether and how they problematize patterns of inequality. Complicating the ‘one country, one citizenship’ rationale of the citizenship regime literature that assumes a one-dimensional interpretation of history, cultural identity, political institutions or legal norms, she points to four salient liberal citizenship discourses that currently frame policies of diversity management. These are civic republicanism, multiculturalism, civic universalism and cosmopolitanism. Her analysis demonstrates that all four liberal citizenship discourses have blind spots when it comes to problematizing structural hierarchies and the logics of racism. Over the last two decades, liberal citizenship and integration policy frameworks have thus contributed to the retention of binary distinctions between superior citizens and inferior Others, distinctions that can now easily be exacerbated and used for mobilization by right-wing populist movements.