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A Journey to Citizenship in the United Kingdom

Author(s): Dina Kiwan

Journal: International Journal of Multicultural Societies
ISSN 1817-4574

Volume: 10;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 60;
Date: 2008;
Original page

Keywords: Citizenship tests | migration | naturalisation | UK citizenship

This paper examines the naturalisation requirements for Britishcitizenship that were introduced in November 2005. I examine thesenew requirements – including the introduction of “citizenship” tests,in the context of my direct involvement in recent UK policydevelopments in the domains of nationality, immigration andeducation. I make three interrelated arguments. First, that thecitizenship policy developments on nationality cannot be fullyunderstood without reference to earlier and continuing developmentsin citizenship education policy. Second, that the introduction ofcitizenship tests illustrates a “restrictive” turn in which nationality laws are increasingly encroaching on liberal norms in Western European countries. And finally, that “national” citizenship tests in a supposedly “post-national” world are obsolete.

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