In a modern world of vast migrations and relocations, the rights -- and rites -- of citizenship are increasingly perplexing, and ever more important. This book asks how citizenship is enacted when all the world's the stage.Kung Fu cinema, soul music, plays, and speeches are some of the media May Joseph considers as expressive negotiations for legal and cultural citizenship. Nomadic Identities combines material culture and historical approaches to forge connections between East Africa, India, Britain, the Caribbean, and the United States in the struggles for democratic citizenship. Exploring the notion of nomadic citizenship as a modern construct, Joseph emphasizes culture as the volatile mise-en-scene through which popular conceptions of local and national citizenship emerge.Joseph, an Asian African from Tanzania, brings a personal insight to the question of how citizenship is expressed -- particularly the nomadic, conditional citizenship related to histories of migrancy and the tenuous status of immigrants. Nomadic Identities investigates the metaphoric, literal, and performed possibilities available in different arenas of the everyday through which individuals and communities experience citizenship -- successfully or not. A unique inquiry into contemporary experiences of migrancy linking Tanzania, Britain, and the United States, this book blends political theory, performance studies, cultural studies, and historical writing. It offers vignettes that describe the official and informal cultural transactions that designate citizenship under the globalizing forces of decolonization, the cold war, and transnational networks.Crossing the globe, Nomadic Identities provides freshinsights into the contemporary phenomena of territorial displacement and the resulting local and transnational movements of people.
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Joseph is assistant professor of performance studies at New York University.
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