Journal of Global Citizenship & Equity Education, Vol 4, No 1 (2014)

Toward Enacted Cosmopolitan Citizenship: New Conceptualizations of African Immigrants’ Civic Learning and Action in the United States

Ashley Taylor Jaffee, Vaughn V. M. Watson, Michelle G. Knight

Abstract


The rapid growth of African residents in the U.S. is shaping global civil society, and calls for rethinking global identities and notions of global citizenship. This paper presents findings from a qualitative, interpretive case study on the civic learning and action of second- and 1.5-generation African immigrants in New York, U.S.A. We consider how African immigrants are constructing an understanding of their civic learning and action, and conceptualize an enacted cosmopolitan citizenship to better understand their civic engagement involving social justice issues in the U.S. and globally. We examine African immigrants' enacted cosmopolitan citizenship across two intersecting themes: 1) identities/attachments within and across local and global communities, and 2) enactments within and across local and global communities. We build upon theories of cosmopolitanism to extend understandings of an action-oriented global worldview of cosmopolitan citizenship, and point to implications for enacting new conceptualizations of citizenship and civic participation in global societies.


Keywords


Citizenship; Cosmopolitanism; African Immigrants; Civic Action; Global Justice

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