Citizenship and Governmentality

Michael Woods, Lynda Cheshire

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionary

6 Citations (SciVal)


Citizenship is often understood in straightforward legal terms, but it also represents a set of practices that constitute a change in the relationship between citizens and the nation-state, and the way society is governed. While citizenship was historically associated with urban societies, the promotion of national forms of citizenship from the late 18th century onward meant that citizenship rights were also extended to rural dwellers. From a Foucauldian governmentality perspective, such processes have been associated with the emergence of new advanced liberal governmentalities of rule, accompanied by techniques for thinking about, and acting upon, the objects and subjects of government. Where previously, citizenship was construed, in social terms, through the rights and responsibilities of citizens to a national polity, advanced liberalism reconstitutes citizenship as something that is active and imbued with norms of self-reliance. For rural citizens, this has meant the decline of state protectionism and subsidization for primary industries and rural service delivery in favor of new modes of intervention that seek to activate their citizenship via their allegiance to subnational communities of interest.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Encyclopedia of Human Geography
ISBN (Electronic)9780081022962
ISBN (Print)9780081022955
Publication statusPublished - 29 Nov 2019


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