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The Perils of Belonging – Autochthony, Citizenship, and Exclusion in Africa and Europe - Chicago Scholarship Online
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The Perils of Belonging: Autochthony, Citizenship, and Exclusion in Africa and Europe

Peter Geschiere


Despite being told that we now live in a cosmopolitan world, more and more people have begun to assert their identities in ways that are deeply rooted in the local. These claims of autochthony—meaning “born from the soil”—seek to establish an irrefutable, primordial right to belong and are often employed in politically charged attempts to exclude outsiders. This book traces the concept of autochthony back to the classical period and incisively explores the idea in two very different contexts: Cameroon and the Netherlands. In both countries, the momentous economic and political changes followin ... More

Keywords: autochthony, citizenship, exclusion, Cameroon, Netherlands, immigrants, multiculturalism, migration, Cold War, belonging

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2009 Print ISBN-13: 9780226289649
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226289663.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Peter Geschiere, author