Figures of the cosmopolitan: privileged nationals and national outsider.

Kofman, Eleonore ORCID logoORCID: (2005) Figures of the cosmopolitan: privileged nationals and national outsider. Innovation: The European Journal of Social Sciences, 18 (1) . pp. 83-97. ISSN 1351-1610 [Article] (doi:10.1080/1351161042000334808)


In contemporary European social and political thought, cosmopolitanism is frequently closely linked with the modern cultural citizen, who is open to the variety of global cultures and can participate equally at al levels of society from the local to the global. The cosmopolitan or privileged national moves freely and, from a secure vantage point, is at home anywhere. However what I suggest in this paper is that there is a darker dimension, which is too easily forgotten in the celebratory figures of the cosmopolitan based on unfettered movement and consumption of places. There is another cosmopolitan figure which draws upon an ambiguous historical baggage where the rootless and flexible outsider was treated with suspicion and hostility. In 20th century Europe, cosmopolitanism often epitomised the Jew with divided allegiances and little attachment to the land, and more often at home in the city, unlike indigenous populations. Today the fear of divided loyalties and transnational political participation falls in particular upon Europe's Muslim populations, who must demonstrate that they are not cosmopolitan. Thus what is interpreted positively in the privileged national is deemed to be negative and problematic in the migrant.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Special issue on Europe and Cosmopolitanism.
Subsequently published in Cosmopolitanism and Europe, edited by Chris Rumford; Liverpool U. P.; 2007. 9781846310461
Research Areas: A. > School of Law
Item ID: 4440
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Adam Edwards
Date Deposited: 10 Mar 2010 10:47
Last Modified: 17 Oct 2019 07:55

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Activity Overview
6 month trend
6 month trend

Additional statistics are available via IRStats2.