Citizenship and its Discontents: An Indian History by Niraja Gopal Jayal

By Niraja Gopal Jayal

Citizenship and Its Discontents explores a century of contestations over citizenship from the colonial interval to the current, examining evolving conceptions of citizenship as felony prestige, as rights, and as id

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Extra resources for Citizenship and its Discontents: An Indian History

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If the statist imperative of managing populations has dominated the determination of legal citizenship, social and political struggle have played a preeminent role in the negotiation of questions of rights and identity. The book addresses questions such as which forms of citizenship are claimed and at what juncture, who makes these claims, and where citizens meet the state in the pursuit of their rights. Claims to legal status, it shows, are generally negotiated in the judicial space, claim-making for rights tends to occur on the terrain of civil society, while claimants of differentiated citizenship typically use the sphere of partisan politics to advance their demands.

158 Download Date | 8/25/14 12:18 PM T h e S u b j e c t- C i t i z e n 45 property has from the outset been the main foundation of the franchise.  . all the evidence we have received shows that it is now well established and commands general approval. (Government of India, 1932: 33) The social background of those nominated or elected to the various Provincial Councils in India between 1893 and 1906 is revealing: 36 percent were lawyers and 22 percent were landholders (B. Majumdar, 1965: 358). : 399).

If franchise is a plausible proxy for citizenship, property also acquires significance, since the franchise was substantially based in property ownership. Indeed, there had long been widespread support in Indian society for making the franchise dependent upon property and education. Nabagopal Mitra, a nineteenth-century Bengali intellectual nicknamed “National Nabagopal”26 was among those who asked for Indian representation in the British Parliament. 158 Download Date | 8/25/14 12:18 PM 44 Cit izenship a nd Its Discontents Indian population might lead to the swamping of the House of Commons, he proposed limiting the franchise to those with wealth or education or both (B.

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