Part or chapter of a book
Identities, Nationalism, Citizenship and Republican ideology
Developments in French Politics 3
DUCHESNE Sophie - Centre de recherches politiques de Sciences Po (CEVIPOF) (Author)
New York : Palgrave Macmillan
230 - 244 p.
Citizenship and national identities are central elements of political systems. They account for the political link, i.e. for the relationship between the citizens as well as between citizens and rulers. Citizenship is often analyzed through the notions of rights and obligations (Walzer 1989). As Jean Leca pointed out, these rights and obligations are not only a matter of status, of legal rules(Leca 1983). They also encompass a set of values or moral qualities as well as a series of social roles. The relationship between rules, values and roles is not straightforward. Civic values and the distinction between citizens’ and private roles are part of the political culture of a country. The legal regulation of membership, rights and obligations is also supposed to reflect this political culture, but it may be influenced by external sources of constraint, such as supranational integration. Moreover, a political culture is not an homogeneous set of values shared by all members of a political community. It is an evolving but persistent configuration of competing ideologies inherited from the main political struggles that the national community has gone through. The notion of national identity is embedded in the political culture. In the fullest sense of the term, a national identity is a complex pattern of meanings and values related to the group whose borders are defined by the state’s capacity to intervene. Any change in the regulation of the group may be interpreted as a consequence as well as a cause of some change in national identity (...).