The Introduction offers a new perspective and novel theoretical tools to analyse citizenship as well as what the position of Romani minorities in Europe indicates about citizenship in liberal democratic states. Instead of looking at Roma merely as a marginalised minority or a disadvantaged group, it aims to comprehend their position as citizens.
Chapter 2 scrutinises the connection between the right to territoriality and the mobility of marginalised minorities, particularly how the perception of Roma as a ‘deviant culture’ contributes to the forceful restriction of their rights (such as the right to free movement). State authorities limit freedom of movement for Roma because they construct them as a security threat. The chapter argues that all these cases should not be simply seen in terms of the right to mobility, but in terms of the rights certain groups have on particular territories. The chapter then examines whether there are any similarities in relation to territory and mobility in the case of Australian Indigenous people. Although both of these groups have rights on the territory, their claims have been suspended when they have been in conflict either with the sovereignty of the states or the economic interests of the states (as in the case of the Intervention in the Northern Territory in Australia). The chapter concludes that freedom of movement and territorial rights are two sides of the same coin: it is the states that grant or restrict them, and this leads to the positioning of marginalised minorities at the fringes of citizenship.
Chapter 4 looks at the position of Roma without access to citizenship: those who are stateless. 75 per cent of stateless people belong to minority groups. However, not all minorities are equally vulnerable to statelessness. Whilst most stateless minorities have no access to political rights, some have a broad scope of economic and social rights. For example, Russian speakers in the Baltic states are politically marginalised but are not at the fringes of citizenship when it comes to their socio-economic rights, but some Roma, cannot prove their citizenship and so have no rights granted whatsoever. They find themselves in a space in-between where they do not fit the definition of either a citizen or a stateless person. I call this position a total infringement of citizenship. This chapter argues that Romani individuals are not only passive observers of this infringement, but they create alternative ways to access rights denied by states. It explores how states hinder access to citizenship for certain minorities through citizenship laws and other legislation. The chapter argues that statelessness is always a product of state intervention rather than the lack of it or the lack of interest of stateless minorities to regularise their status. It first scrutinises cases where Romani individuals have found themselves with hindered access to citizenship. It then compares the position of stateless Roma with that of other stateless minorities around the globe.
The penultimate chapter looks at how states address Roma as (active) citizens and how Roma reconstruct citizenship at its fringes as activist citizens. It exposes how fringes are created by states, by international organisations and through the everyday practices of majority populations. However, the main body of the chapter explores another meaning of the fringe: marginalised minorities on the fringe also subvert and reconstruct the core understanding of citizenship from this fringe. These acts are not necessarily only activism but also include everyday mundane practices that carry the potential of political action. I call this form of enactment as citizenship sabotage.
Chapter 1 discusses the naming and counting of Romani minorities and approaches towards Roma as minority citizens in EU Member States and candidate countries. The Council of Europe has described Roma as ‘living scattered all over Europe, not having a country to call their own, they are a true European minority, but one that does not fit into the definitions of national or linguistic minorities’. The chapter looks at national legislation on minority protection, and examines the reports of the Council of Europe and the European Commission to analyse how they describe Roma as a transnational minority. It highlights how the documents of European international organisations, in describing the position of Roma in Europe, use developmental discourse similar to the United Nations’ narrative on Indigenous people. It argues that the invisible edges of citizenship have manifested themselves as perceived non-territorialism, and that the alleged underdevelopment of Roma has contributed to a lesser scope of minority rights in some contexts. Finally, the chapter addresses the interplay between international and national law in the context of defining the status of Indigenous people. It looks at the invisible edges of citizenship for Indigenous people in Australia, Canada and the US in the wake of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, showing that both Roma in Europe and Indigenous people in the four settler colonial states found themselves on the fringes of citizenship where states highlighted their positions as minority groups but also made them invisible as citizens.
To understand how subjects are constructed socially and historically in terms of power, and how they act through power on others and on themselves, but not to see this as a purely random process or activity where ‘anything goes’, or conversely, portray ethical actions in terms of fixed universal rules or specified teleological ends, constitutes the objective of this book. What a normative Foucault can offer us, I claim, is a critical ethics of the present that is well and truly beyond Kant, Hegel. and Marx, and which can guide action and conduct for the twenty-first century.
Chapter 4 examines the senses in which continuance ethics derived from Foucault, Canguilhem, and Nietzsche can claim objectivity by comparing the sense of objectivity claimed to the metaphysical sense of objectivity argued for by Derek Parfit. While it is claimed that the objectivity established is certainly different to traditional metaphysical conceptions, it still warrants being labelled as objective, and is clearly not a species of subjectivism, the dominant approach in moral philosophy for most of the twentieth century. It is objective also in that it avoids any possibility of being classified as relativistic. After this cartography of the concept, Kantian ethics is considered and rejected. Life continuance is then restated as embodying a new reconciliation of the right with the good, as well as going beyond universalism to consider contingency and cultural difference as important contextual considerations.
Chapter 8 continues the theme of ethical engagement and the senses in which Foucault’s work can be said to support a democratic ethic. It starts by examining the critical commentary of Foucault by the American political theorist Ella Myers, in order to position Foucault in relation to her conception of democratic politics. The second part of the chapter turns its attention to a current of political philosophy in North America, notably Stephen K. White’s ‘weak ontology’ thesis, and the ethic of ‘presumptive generosity’ that White, as well as influential philosophers such as William Connolly and Charles Taylor, have supported. After doing this, Foucault’s relevance for education is explored, and the chapter concludes by seeking to relate continuance ethics to virtue ethics and asking what a Foucauldian ethic for a global world might look like.
Chapter 9 concludes this study by examining the issues of ethics and the subject. Drawing on writing on normative moral philosophy in relation to Foucault, the chapter introduces and critically examines the themes of personal responsibility, integrity, authenticity, and ethical comportment, drawing especially on the work of Judith Butler. It seeks to ascertain how the individual acts morally and engages ethically in a complex world and what ethical engagement, ethical motivation, and ethical commitment looks like from a Foucauldian point of view.
Chapter 1 starts by examining the thesis advanced by Mark Kelly that Foucault’s research project is intentionally and irreparably non-normative. Contra Kelly, I argue that in important senses, Foucault cannot avoid being normative. Furthermore, I suggest, drawing on writers such as Paul Patton, Nancy Fraser, and Pierre Hadot, that the absence of normative criteria that can ground his project constitutes a major failing of his approach. The chapter then seeks to demonstrate the pervasiveness of the normative as well as to document important researches in the area, which have helped to produce the recent ‘normative turn’ in philosophy.