Special Issue of Citizenship Studies on Aspirant States

About the author(s):

Andrea Farrés Jiménez is a qualified Spanish lawyer specialized in international humanitarian law, international security and arms control. She graduated from the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in 2019 with a master’s in International Law. Her master’s thesis focused on the impact that new technologies and artificial intelligence have on IHL targeting principles. She worked as a legal expert for the Norwegian Refugee Council, the Spanish Permanent Mission in Switzerland and in The Netherlands, and the World Organization Against Torture, among other organizations. She has published on issues related to arms controls, gender, new technologies and the IHL targeting principles.

The latest Special Issue of Citizenship Studies contains 12 contributions which use political science, international law and anthropology literature to unmoor the primacy of the nation-state as the sole entity able to confer legal identity on individuals.

These contributions examine legal identity documents in entities referred to as “aspirant states” with the aim to highlight how legal identity documents issued by these states raise questions about contemporary citizenship regimes in general and about the way law and state authority are constructed and reproduced.

Through this analysis, the contributions of this special issue consider the violent and circular logic of the current nation-state system and how legal identity, and citizenship, is conferred and maintained.

The list of the articles comprising the issue can be found below:

Marika Sosnowski and Bart Klem 
Legal identity in a looking-glass world: documenting citizens of aspirant states

Atharv Dhiman and Imke Harbers 
Legal Identity at the Margins: The Impact of Violent Conflict on Birth Registration in India

Kamal Makili-Aliyev 
An Illegal Republic: The Formation and Continuity of the Collective Legal Identity of Karabakh Armenians

Ramesh Ganohariti 
(Non)Recognition of Legal Identity in Aspirant States: Evidence from Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Transnistria

Thomas McGee 
Implications of Legal Identity Documentation issued by the Kurdish-led Self Administration in Northern Syria: Competition and Compromise with the Central State

William Grant-Brook 
Documenting Life amidst the Syrian War: Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham’s Performance of Statehood through Identity Documents

Sarah Adamczyk and Jessica Doumit 
Legal Identity in Limbo: Humanitarian Challenges and Responses to Civil Documentation Issued By De Facto Authorities in Northwest Syria

Gehad Abaza 
On Becoming Citizens of the ‘Non-Existent’: Document Production and Syrian-Circassian Wartime Migration to Abkhazia

Jenny Hedström 
Weddings amidst War: The Intimate and Insurgent Politics of Marriage

Andrea Marilyn Pragashini Immanuel 
The right to nationality of the Saharawis and their legal identity documents

Kathryn Hampton and Bilyana Petkova Khan 
Armed Groups, States and Families: Accounting for the Dead as an Element of Humane Treatment

Marnie Lloydd 
Legal Identity under Insurgencies and Unrecognised States: Pushing Us Back to International Law?

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