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Ambiguous Citizenship in an Age of Global Migration$
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Aoileann Ní Mhurchú

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748692774

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748692774.001.0001

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Challenging the Citizenship Debate:

Challenging the Citizenship Debate:

Beyond Sovereign Time and Space

Chapter:
(p.163) 5 Challenging the Citizenship Debate
Source:
Ambiguous Citizenship in an Age of Global Migration
Author(s):

Aoileann Ní Mhurchú

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748692774.003.0006

Chapter 5 reflects on a Kristevan conception of maternal time in contrast to a conception of national time. National time is progressive (teleological): it has a clear start, middle and end point, which is normally used to distinguish the self from an Other temporally and spatially. This chapter considers how maternal time is linked to eternity and cycles rather than progress and thus undermines the ability to base the idea of ‘I’ in a particular moment in time (the present) which can be distinguished from a similar moment (in the future or the past) and therefore an ‘Other’ which is distinct from the ‘self’. Kristeva's notion of maternal time is used here to destabilise, the prominence of national time and to explore how we can think about alternative temporal possibilities more generally. The experiences of intergenerational migrant youth are recast in this chapter through the possibility that the political subject itself is fragmented in terms of many different types of contingent space and fragmented temporality, rather than located only in dualistic space and linear progressive temporality without limits. The chapter argues that exploring this line of inquiry is an example of actually challenging the existing spatio-temporal terms of The Citizenship Debate.

Keywords:   maternal time, national time, teleological, self, Other, migrant youth, political subject, contingent space, fragmented time, Julia Kristeva

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