(Re-)Making Citizenship: Explorations of Belonging and Participation in the Arts, 7th May 2020

Maria Roca Lizarazu's picture

Call for Contributions: (Re-)Making Citizenship: Explorations of Belonging and Participation in the Arts

Date: 7 May 2020, Time: 10-5 pm; Location: University of Warwick

Confirmed Keynote Speaker:
Prof. Nando Sigona (Birmingham University)

In our era of globalised mass migration, traditional notions of citizenship are becoming increasingly contested. As several scholars have argued [Matthew J Gibney, Linda Bosniak], the existing juridical model of citizenship no longer account for the experiences and existences of those who move at the – real and symbolic – margins of nation states and their human rights regimes, such as, for example, asylum seekers, refuges and undocumented migrants. At the same time, post-migrant societies, for example, Belgium, France, Germany, are shaped by individuals who might hold citizenship rights but are still perceived as other, owing to ethnicised and racialised perceptions of national belonging. And these perceptions can result in the revocation of their rights, as the recent Windrush scandal in the UK has demonstrated.
It therefore appears as though we need to re-negotiate notions citizenship, belonging and participation for our contemporary moment of mass and post-migration. While work of this kind is currently being undertaken in Politics and the Social Sciences [Nando Sigona, Engin Isin], it is interesting that some theorists turn to artistic traditions – such as for example the Greek tragedy but also theatre more broadly – to think through the complexities of citizenship and belonging in the 21st century [Bonnie Honig, David Wiles]. This suggests that the Arts might hold important insights to these debates, which have so far remained underexplored. The Arts might on the one hand provide us with historical models that allow us to question, de-naturalise and modify out contemporary political categories. On the other hand, the Arts provide spaces of experimentation and (re-)creation that also allow us to think (about) alternative models of political participation.


This one-day workshop wants to explore the role and contribution of the Arts in contemporary discussions of citizenship. What alternative models of belonging, membership and participation can we find in the Arts? How do the Arts potentially challenge our existing conceptions of citizenship, whilst also allowing us to go beyond them? And how might the Arts contribute toward citizenship education?
The workshop is interested in bringing together academics from all disciplines with artistic practitioners from various backgrounds (literature, music, performance, visual arts) to collaboratively think through these questions. We invite both traditional academic papers and other forms of contribution, such as artistic pieces, interventions, reflections etc. Topics may include but are not limited to:


• Everyday practices of belonging and participation
• Non-citizen citizenship
• Statelessness and citizenship revocation: disfranchisement as a mechanism of exclusion
• Migration, documented and undocumented
• Asylum seekers and refugees
• Second and third-generation migrants
• Postmigrant conditions
• Mechanisms of inclusion and exclusion
• The integration paradigm and its criticisms

Abstracts of no more than 300 words for either academic papers or other modes of contribution, followed by a short bio note, should be sent to I.Dal-Poz@warwick.ac.uk and M.RocaLizarazu@bham.ac.uk by February 15th, 2020.