Citizenship and National Identity by David l. Miller

By David l. Miller

A very good political neighborhood is one whose voters are actively engaged in finding out their universal destiny jointly. sure jointly through ties of nationwide team spirit, they detect and enforce rules of justice that each one can proportion, and in doing so that they recognize the separate identities of minority teams in the group.

within the essays gathered during this ebook, David Miller exhibits that such an amazing isn't just fascinating, yet possible. He explains how lively citizenship at the republican version differs from liberal citizenship, and why it serves deprived teams higher than at the moment trendy different types of id politics. via taking into account freely with each other, electorate can succeed in judgements on concerns of public coverage which are either rational and reasonable. He this with a powerful defence of the primary of nationality, arguing shared nationwide id is important to inspire voters to interact within the identify of justice. makes an attempt to create transnational sorts of citizenship, in Europe and in different places, are consequently faulty. He exhibits that the primary of nationality can accommodate the calls for of minority international locations, and doesn't result in a secessionist free-for-all. and at last he demonstrates that nationwide self-determination needn't be accomplished on the fee of world justice.

it is a robust assertion from a number one political theorist that not just extends our figuring out of citizenship, nationality and deliberative democracy, yet engages with present political debates approximately identification politics, minority nationalisms and ecu integration.

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Historically the sovereign state has been the main vehicle through which claims to national self-determination have been realized, and this is not just an accident. Nevertheless national self-determination can be realized in other ways, and as we shall see there are cases where it must be realized other than through a sovereign state, precisely to meet the equally good claims of other nationalities. I want to stress that the three propositions I have outlined – about personal identity, about bounded duties and about political 28 In Defence of Nationality self-determination– are linked together in such a way that it is difficult to feel the force of any one of them without acknowledging the others.

It follows that what social justice consists in will vary from place to place, but not directly in line with sentiments or feelings. A Swede will acknowledge more extensive obligations to provide welfare for fellow-Swedes than an American will for fellow-Americans; but this is because the public culture of Sweden, defining in part what it means to be Swedish, is solidaristic, whereas the public culture of the US is individualistic. It is not part of the story that Swedes must have more sympathetic feelings for other individual Swedes than Americans do for other Americans.

This is not to say that we owe no duties to humans as such; nor is it to deny that there may be other, perhaps smaller and more intense, communities to whose members we owe duties that are more stringent still than those we owe to Britons, Swedes, etc. at large. But it is to claim that a proper account of ethics should give weight to national boundaries, and that in particular there is no objection in principle to institutional schemes that are designed to deliver benefits exclusively to those who fall within the same boundaries as ourselves.

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