What is a citizen?

Our next Salon, powered by Zoom, will be held on Thursday 4 June at 7 PM.

Mladen Pupavac and Vanessa Pupavac from the Centre for the Study of Social and Global Justice, University of Nottingham and co-authors of the forthcoming book Changing European Visions of Disaster and Development will lead our discussion of ‘What is a citizen?’.

“The idea of being a citizen is tied to membership of a city or state, that is, rights, freedom and responsibilities derived from membership of a particular place. 

Crucially as citizens we enjoy rights of political self-determination where the city or state lies. 

In the modern era our core rights have been organised around being a citizen. The French Revolution put the citizens and the rights of man at its heart. However, the French philosopher Jean Jacques Rousseau had recognised a tension between the claiming the rights of man and having to being a citizen. 

Some human rights advocates argue that we should move away from many of the distinctions between citizens and non-citizens, and ground more rights on universal human rights. What would we gain or lose were we to do so? 

Thinking about this universal idea may help us determine what it is significant about being a citizen.” 

This Salon is free but please register by emailing [email protected] and you will be sent an Agenda and a link to join the event.

(Illustration: D├ęclaration des droits de l’homme et du citoyen, by Le Barbier (1789) Public Domain)