Is 'citizenship' still a useful concept? Can citizens - and democracy - exist independently of the state? This text provides an accessible guide to the theories and debates that surround the key political concepts of state, citizenship, and democracy today. John Hoffman reviews the modern development of these concepts from the classic texts of Marx and Weber to the post-war critiques of the feminist, multicultural and critical theorists and considers the on-going barriers to a full realisation of a democratic citizenship. By carefully considering what the state is and what it does, Hoffman shows that it is possible to respond to these critiques and challenges and 'reclaim' citizenship and democracy as inclusive and emancipatory, rather than divisive and controlling. In advancing this alternative view of a 'stateless' citizenship, Hoffman opens up new possibilities for conceiving power and society in contemporary politics today. It will be essential reading for all students of politics and sociology for whom the questions of state, nationality, power and identity remain of central importance.
Chapter 9: The Problem of Agency and Realization
The Problem of Agency and Realization
- Theory and Practice: Why the Gulf? 155
- Agents of Transformation: Marxism and Anarchism 158
- New Social Movements: A Vehicle for Developing Citizenship? 161
- An Evaluation of the Crick Report 165
- Agency and the Struggle for Citizenship 168
- Summary 172
Who is to carry through the changes advocated here and is the notion of an inclusive citizenship an ideal to be realized?
The first issue deserving of attention is the relation between theory and practice, ideals and reality. It will be argued that we need to distinguish the gulf between theory and practice, which is positive and developmental, and one that is frustrating and disillusioning. A disjunction is inevitable. But we should separate a disjunction from a dualism. Dualism implies an unbridgeable ...