The concept of citizenship and its boundaries are contested, yet its plainest definition is to be a member of a political community, and possess legal rights and duties. Citizenship has many ideals – namely bounded and cosmopolitan –and their merits and downfalls in this essay shall be measured by the extent to which they permit the best use and protection of citizen’s rights. The normative arguments of Miller (2000:81-95) and Linklater (1998:23-36) shall form either side of the bounded citizenship and cosmopolitan citizenship (also referred to as global citizenship) examination, yet one is not conclusively better. Instead there is a compromise; whereby citizens can enjoy their secured rights but also consider the wider implications of
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This illustrates that sovereign state’s rights are not always secure from external pressures. This raises another issue: states may define themselves as sovereign but also partake in a cosmopolitan community, such as the European Union. Similarly to the Danish freedom of speech being hindered, in this incident so was the European Convention of free speech. Therefore both bounded citizenship and cosmopolitan citizenship suffer the same problem.
The second merit concerns bounded citizenship aiding the precision of rights. By considering cultures when reserving rights to one state, representativeness is improved - an impossible feat with the many within global citizenship. Miller (2000: 88) emphasises that nation-state’s boundaries shape its citizens’ identity. However, bounded citizenship does not always account for society’s cultural and ethnic diversifications (Kymlicka, Norman 2000:3). Bell and De-Shalit (2003:213) further this, arguing that republican’s attempts to attain clear national identities and strengthen bounded citizenship’s functionality, can lead states enforcing a national character on citizens; a recommendation of Rousseau’s (1772:n.p.), for people to only wear ‘the national costume’. This ‘difference-blind approach’ (Kymlicka, Norman 2000:3) leads to precision loss as values of certain groups are