Tuesday, September 27 - 4:00 - 5:00 PM
SJE Brown Bag Speaker: Professor Bettina von Lieres
Topic:The Politics of Citizenship in South Africa
Abstract: Since 1994 the term 'citizenship' in South Africa has been used by scholars and activists to refer to a wide array of democratic features which include the legalisation of new individual and collective rights, new forms of citizen engagement and the deepening of civil society mobilisation. Such wide-ranging uses of the idea of 'citizenship' speak powerfully to citizenship's emancipatory ideals: rights, inclusion, justice, equality and democracy. These democratic aspirations, however, do not explain the politics of citizenship, i.e. the struggles between society and state over the distribution of political and economic public goods. In this discussion I will present recent research on new forms of citizen mobilisation in South Africa. Aligning myself with critical approaches to citizenship studies that focus on the complex political processes, practices and struggles in and through which democratic citizenship is enacted, I will show how the politics of citizenship illustrates the uneven trajectories of political and economic inclusion. Understanding 'citizenship' both as 'struggle' and 'regime', I will locate the politics of citizenship against the failure of the South African state's participatory governance program, the extension of neo-liberal forms of economic governance and the increasing importance of informal inter-mediatory actors. I will argue that the growing focus by development theorists and practitioners on citizen participation takes our attention away from the crucial problem of democratising state power as a pre-condition for overcoming inequality and achieving justice. I will also share recent experiences in pedagogical innovations in teaching citizenship studies in Southern Africa.
Location: Rm 12-274, OISE, 252 Bloor St. West
Tuesday, October 4 -
Let's Talk Disability Studies Research!
Unique Opportunity for Research Discussions with Dr. Linda Steele
October 4, 2016 from 4-6 p.m.
Thursday, October 20 - 4:00 - 6:00 PM
Ester Reiter's Book Launch
A Future Without Hate or Need: The Promise of the Jewish Left in Canada.
Ester will be giving a talk entiltled: Women, and The Challenge Of A Socialist Jewish Voice To The Canadian State.
Location: Nexus Lounge, OISE, 12th Flr