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International Journal of Critical Indigenous Studies

The discursive nature of citizenship

Indigenous sovereign rights, racism and welfare reform


Citizenship is more than a status associated with a bundle of rights; it is also the formal contract by which the sovereignty of a nation is extended to the individual in exchange for being governed. Who can and who cannot contract into this status and what rights are able to be exercised is also shaped by who possesses the nation. In this article it is argued that citizenship operates discursively to contain Indigenous people’s engagement with the economy through social rights. This containment precludes consideration of Indigenous sovereign rights to our lands and resources, to enable Indigenous economic development within a capitalist market economy.


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Pages:2 to 9
Section: Articles
How to Cite
Moreton-Robinson, A. (2009). The discursive nature of citizenship. International Journal of Critical Indigenous Studies, 2(2), 2-9.