The New Irish Question: Citizenship, Motherhood and the Politics of Life Itself
Maguire, Mark and Cassidy, Tanya (2009) The New Irish Question: Citizenship, Motherhood and the Politics of Life Itself. Irish Journal of Anthropology, 12 (3). pp. 18-28.
In 2004, voters in the Republic of Ireland supported a constitutional amendment removing the automatic right to Irish citizenship by birth in favor of granting citizenship through a combination of 'blood' and residence rights. The referendum attracted enormous public attention, especially to the perceived attempt to restrict citizenship claims arising from asylum seekers with Irish hom children. Significant scholarly attention has also been paid to the role of the Irish state, and the relationship between the state and 'race'. This article critically reviews this literature and goes beyond it in several ways: first, we re-open discussion of Irish citizenship through a critical examination of its legal underpinnings; second, we trace over the public debates in finer detail; and, third, we show the ways in which Irish citizenship is being reconfigured by broader international forces.
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