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Hosted by University of Sussex Centre for Migration Research

With Moazzam Begg, CAGE Outreach Director


Conditional Citizenship and Belonging? Britain’s ‘Muslim Question’ after the Shamima Begum ruling

Date: Friday 3rd May 2019

Time: 4-6pm

Venue: Room 155, Jubilee Building, University of Sussex, BN1 9RH


In late February, Home secretary Sajid Javid decided to strip Shamima Begum of her British citizenship, citing her as a “dangerous dual national” whose choice to leave the UK and become an ‘ISIS bride’ betrayed her hatred for the country and its values. The ensuing debate on this ruling has been fierce and polarized, much like popular images of Begum herself, which depict her as either a naive teenage runaway or a threatening terrorist sympathizer.

Yet, beyond its immediate emotional resonance, the ruling is critical to understanding contemporary framings of citizenship, identity and integration in the UK, especially in relation to the country’s growing Muslim population. This panel discussion hopes to understand the Shamima Begum ruling within this broader context by asking:

1. To what extent is citizenship conditional on individual heritage and the fulfilment of reciprocal duties towards the state?
2. How does the construction of particular communities as threats to the public good impact on individual citizenship and belonging?
3. How do patriarchal, orientalist and racist discourses in mainstream media and politics shape the embodiment of threat within particular individuals and communities?
4. How are the issues of integration and deradicalization framed in relation to particular individuals and communities?

(NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.)

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