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Subject Philosophy

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405106795.2004.x


P olitical philosophy The legal status of being a member of a nation or state. In contemporary political philosophy, citizenship is both a dutyrelated and rights-related concept. As a citizen, one has a duty to promote and defend the interest of the state, even, if necessary, at the expense of one's own life. Citizens are also obliged to sacrifice some of their private life to engage in public activity. Citizens, however, are recognized as having a right to participate in public life, rights to vote and to stand for public office, rights to education and other welfare, and rights to legal protection. Other rights, such as those involving free speech, free association, and access to a free press, also derive from the notion of citizenship. Citizenship has been described as a democratic ideal that distinguishes free individuals from mere subjects who live under various forms of undemocratic regimes. The equality of democratic citizenship is a central topic in the political discussion of equality. “Democratic citizenship is a status radically disconnected from every kind of hierarchy.” Walzer, Spheres of Justice ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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