Ronit Lentin ‘Ireland: Racial state and crisis racism’, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 30, 4, 2007, pp 610-627
Ethnic and Racial Studies 30 4
This article theorises the state as central to the construction of racism in the Republic of Ireland, which, since the 1990s economic boom, has become an in-migration destination. State racism culminated in the 2004 Citizenship Referendum, in which, at a majority of four to one, the Irish electorate voted for the removal of birth right citizenship to children of migrants. Based on Goldberg’s theory of the racial state, which, in constructing homogeneity, obscures existing heterogeneities, and on Foucault’s theory of biopolitics, leading to the state supposedly caring for the population through a series of technologies aiming to regulate and manage racial diversities, the article examines recent developments in Ireland’s immigration and asylum policies. The debates around the Citizenship Referendum are theorized as constructing what Balibar terms ‘crisis racism’, blaming migrants for the problems of the system.
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