Historical apologies as acts of symbolic inclusion – and exclusion? : Reflections on institutional apologies as politics of cultural citizenship

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Löfström , J 2011 , ' Historical apologies as acts of symbolic inclusion – and exclusion? Reflections on institutional apologies as politics of cultural citizenship ' , Citizenship studies , vol. 15 , no. 1 , pp. 93-108 . https://doi.org/10.1080/13621025.2011.534933

Title: Historical apologies as acts of symbolic inclusion – and exclusion? : Reflections on institutional apologies as politics of cultural citizenship
Author: Löfström, Jan
Contributor organization: Teacher Education
Date: 2011
Language: eng
Number of pages: 16
Belongs to series: Citizenship studies
ISSN: 1362-1025
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13621025.2011.534933
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/36256
Abstract: Institutional apologies for historical injustices can be conceived as acts of symbolic inclusion directed to people whose collective experiences and memories of the past have not been recognized in the hegemonic narratives of the past. However, in this article it is argued that such apologies also have exclusionary potential as vehicles of symbolic politics of citizenship in that they may designate the apologizing community, so that it effectively excludes cultural ‘aliens’, like migrants, from the community of ‘remedial’ citizens. The article suggests a crucial point is the rhetoric shifts when one is appealing to both cultural and political solidarity, as when apologizing in the name of the state but simultaneously invoking ‘our’ nation and ‘our’ history. Thus, the increasing number of institutional historical apologies is not necessarily incompatible with the trend of reinforcing the symbolic boundaries around ‘our’ historical–cultural communities that has been visible recently, e.g. in the demands for cultural canons and citizenship tests in many Western societies.
Subject: 5141 Sociology
5142 Social policy
claiming citizenship
claims making
obligations
migrants
identity
citizenship
Peer reviewed: Yes
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: acceptedVersion


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