Oslo Summer School in Comparative Social Science Studies 2012

Citizenship: Inclusions and Exlusions

Lecturer: Professor Yasemin Soysal,
Department of Sociology,
University of Essex, UK 

Main disciplines: Sociology, Political Science, Anthropology
Dates: 23 - 27 July 2012
Course Credits: 10 pts (ECTS)
Limitation: 30 participants


This course is an introduction to major theoretical approaches and substantive issues in current sociological thinking on citizenship, with a view on the postwar reconfigurations of the nation-state and citizenship via globalization and the expansion of transnational framework of human rights. Substantively, the course explores the contemporary processes that underline the inclusions and exclusions in the body of citizenry: territorial and cultural closure of the nation, expansion of individual (human) rights and privileges, immigration and incorporation of diversity, European citizenship, globalization of economy and markets, and the transnationalization of normativity, actors, and claims for citizenship.

The seminar aims to orient students to recent conceptualizations, and theoretical and research issues in the field. Thereby it hopes to stimulate further research on the topics to be covered in the course.

Preparatory Readings
Students must obtain and read the following books in advance of the course

  • Sassen, Saskia. 2006. Territory, Authority, Rights: From Medieval to Global Assemblages. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.
  • Shafir, Gershon, ed. 1998. The Citizenship Debates: A reader. Minneapolis: Univ. of Minnesota Press.
  • Somers, Margaret R. 2008. Genealogies of Citizenship: Markets, Statelessness, and the Right to Have Rights. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.
  • Soysal, Yasemin Nuhoğlu. 1994. Limits of citizenship: Migrants and Postnational Membership in Europe. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.

See also Additional Recommended Readings

Lecture Outline

Lecture 1: Introduction and the Foundations of the Nation-State and Citizenship: Sovereignty as Territorial Closure
On the growing popularity of the topic, general perspectives and conceptual clarifications. Sovereignty and territory as definers of the boundaries of citizenship.


  • Meyer, John W. 1980. The World Polity and the Authority of the Nation-state, pp. 109-37 in Studies of the Modern World-System, A. Bergesen, ed. Academic Press.
  • Levy, Daniel and Natan Sznaider. 2006. Sovereignty Transformed: A Sociology of Human Rights. The British Journal of Sociology 57(4): 657-676.

Lecture 2: Collective Nation as Cultural Closure
National culture and identity as definers of the boundaries of citizenship. Alternative perspectives on rethinking the boundaries of citizenship.


  • Anderson, Benedict. 1991. Imagined Communities (2nd ed). Verso. (pp. 1-82)
  • Shachar, Ayelet. 2007. Against Birthright Privilege: Redefining Citizenship as Property, pp. 257-81 in Identities, Affiliations, and Allegiances, S. Benhabib, I. Shapiro, and D. Petranović, eds. Cambridge University Press.

Lecture 3: From Subjects to Equal Citizens
Where do citizenship rights come from?  Historical trajectories and sociological explanations.


  • Marshall, T.H. 1998 [1950]. Citizenship and Social Class, pp. 93-112 in The Citizenship Debates, Gershon Shafir, ed. University of Minnesota Press.
  • Tilly, Charles. 1999. Where Do Rights Come From? pp. 55-72 in Democracy, Revolution and History, Theda Skocpol, ed. Cornell University Press. 

Lecture 4: Markets, Welfare and Citizenship
What is the relationship between formal rights and substantive equality? Changing foundations of ‘good citizenship’ and social justice.


  • Somers, Margaret R. 2008. Genealogies of Citizenship: Markets, Statelessness, and the Right to Have Rights, Cambridge University Press. (chps 2 and 6)
  • Soysal, Yasemin. 2012. Citizenship, Immigration, and The European Social Project: Rights and Obligations of Individuality. British Journal of Sociology (March).

Lecture 5: Immigration and Citizenship
What immigration reveals about the principles and modes of membership and belonging.


  • Benhabib, Seyla. 1999. Citizens, Residents, and Aliens in a Changing World: Political Membership in the Global Era. Social Research 66 (3): 709- 44. 
  • Joppke, Christian. 2007. Beyond National Models: Civic Integration Policies for Immigrants in Western Europe. West European Politics 30(1): 1-22.

Lecture 6: Citizenship and Diversity
How does citizenship’s claim to universal inclusion and equal rights and duties stand vis-à-vis societal and cultural diversity?


  • Kymlicka, Will. 2003. Immigration, Citizenship, Multiculturalism: Exploring the Links. The Political Quarterly Publishing 74 (August): 195-208.
  • Benhabib, Seyla. 2002. The Claims of Culture: Equality and Diversity in the Global Era, Princeton University Press. (chps 3, 4 and 5)

Lecture 7: Participation and Civicness
Public sphere and associational life as sites for citizenship practices.


  • Putnam, Robert D. 2007. E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and Community in the Twenty-first Century. Scandinavian Political Studies 30(2): 137-174.
  • Kesler, Christel and Irene Bloemraad. 2010. Does Immigration Erode Social Capital? The Conditional Effects of Immigration-Generated Diversity on Trust, Membership, and Participation across 19 countries, 1981-2000. Canadian Journal of Political Science 43(2): 319-347.

Lecture 8: Transnationalization of Actors and Claims
New sites and forms of citizens’ claims making.


  • Sassen, Saskia. 2006. Territory, Authority, Rights: From Medieval to Global Assemblages. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press. (chp 6)
  • Benhabib, Seyla. 2009. Claiming Rights across Borders: International Human Rights and Democratic Sovereignty, American Political Science Review 103(4): 691-704.

Lecture 9: Cosmopolitization of Citizenship
How global or Eurocentric is the cosmopolitization project?


  • Levy, Daniel and Natan Sznaider, 2007. Memories of Europe: Cosmopolitanism and its Others, chp 10 in Cosmopolitanism and Europe, Chris Rumford, ed. Liverpool University Press.
  • Soysal, Yasemin and Simona Szakacs, 2010. Re-conceptualizing the Republic: Citizenship Education in France. The Journal of Interdisciplinary History 41(1): 97-115.

Lecture 10: Citizenship and Human Rights
What is the relationship between citizenship and human rights?


  • Shafir, Gershon and Alison Brysk, 2006. The Globalization of Rights: From Citizenship to Human Rights. Citizenship Studies 10(3): 275-87.
  • Kate Nash. 2009. Between Citizenship and Human Rights. Sociology 43(6): 1067–83.

The Lecturer
Before taking her position at Essex University, Yasemin Soysal studied and worked in the US. She has written extensively on the historical development and contemporary reconfigurations of the nation-state and citizenship in Europe. Her publications include Limits of Citizenship: Migrants and Postnational Membership in Europe and The Nation, Europe and the World: Textbooks and Curricula in Transition (with H. Schissler, eds). Currently she is working on two projects: a comparative and longitudinal study of the changing concepts of “good citizen” and “good society” in Europe and East Asia (with S.Y. Wong, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, UK, and the Hong Kong Research Grant Council), and a survey study of “life course and self projections” of immigrant origin youth in Spain (with A. Gonzales and H. Cebolla, funded by Juan March Institute).

Soysal has held several fellowships and guest professorships, including Wissenschaftskolleg, National Endowment of Humanities, National Academy of Education, German Marshall Fund, Max Planck Institute, European University Institute, Juan March Institute, Hitotsubashi University, and the Chinese University of Hong Kong. She is past president of the European Sociological Association.

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Tags: Citizenship, Immigration, Summer School, PhD, Sociology
Published Oct. 10, 2012 1:20 PM - Last modified Aug. 21, 2015 1:09 PM