Citizenship and belonging: An analysis of the Zimbabwean diaspora

Maswikwa, Belinda (2010-03)

Thesis (MA (Political Science))--University of Stellenbosch, 2010.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Immigrant societies are in the midst of heated debates about citizenship and what it means to belong to their nation-states. The main purpose of this study is to conduct exploratory and descriptive research into the concept of belonging to a host country, in order to advance an understanding of this under-conceptualised, yet topical issue. The project was based on an extensive review of literature from the fields of psychology, sociology and political science, as well as on the responses from an empirical, quantitative survey of Zimbabweans living in South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. The findings reveal that Zimbabwean respondents are frustrated with perceived attempts to exclude them from becoming full and equal members of host societies. Zimbabweans who feel that they will never truly belong or be fully accepted by host countries have subsequently developed a heightened sense of attachment to Zimbabwe, as a way of differentiating themselves from the dominant population. The main conclusion that can be drawn is that belonging, inclusion and identification with a host country is a complex process that involves three separate stakeholders namely the host country, members of the dominant group, and the immigrants themselves. This research thus argues that the problem of immigrant integration should be viewed through multiple lenses, by including the influence of various stakeholders. Doing so would lead to a more nuanced understanding of the forces influencing belonging, and could potentially lead to the formulation of more comprehensive and more targeted policies.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Immigrante samelewings is in die midde van hewige debatte oor burgerskap en wat dit beteken om te behoort tot hul nasie-state. Die hoofdoel van hierdie studie is om in verkennende en beskrywende ondersoek van die konsep “gasheer land intergrasie”, ten einde 'n begrip van hierdie vooraf onder-gekonseptualiseerde maar tog hedendaags belangrike konsep, te formuleer. Die projek is op 'n omvattende oorsig van die literatuur gebaseer uit die gebied van sielkunde, sosiologie en politieke wetenskap, sowel as op die antwoorde van' ʼn empiriese, kwantitatiewe opname van Zimbabwiërs wat in Suid-Afrika, die Verenigde Koninkryk en die Verenigde State van Amerika gehuisves is. Die bevinding van die studie toon dat die Zimbabwiese proefpersone gefrustreerd is met die waargenome pogings van uitsluiting deur lede van die gasheer lande ten opsigte van volle gelykstelling met bogenoemde lede. Zimbabwiërs wat voel dat hulle sal nooit werklik behoort, of nie ten volle aanvaar sal word in gasheer-lande nie, het 'n verhoogde gevoel van verbinding ontwikkel met hul tuisland Zimbabwe, as ʼn manier van onderskeiding tussen hulself en die dominante bevolking. Die belangrikste gevolgtrekking wat gemaak kan word, is dat groep behoorting, insluiting en identifikasie met 'n gasheer land 'n komplekse proses is wat drie afsonderlike belanghebbendes naamlik die gasheer land, die lede van die dominante groep en die immigrante hulself behels. Hierdie navorsing argumenteer dus dat die probleem van die immigrant integrasie uit verskeie perspektiewe geanaliseer moet word, deur die betrekking van die invloed van verskeie belanghebbendes. Dit sou lei tot 'n meer genuanseerde begrip van die kragte wat ʼn uitwerking het op intergrasie, en kan moontlik lei tot die formulering van meer omvattende en geringe beleide.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/4148
This item appears in the following collections: