Neighborhoods and States: Why Collective Self-determination is Not Always Valuable

Abstract

Collective self-determination is considered to be an important political value. Many liberal political philosophers appeal to it to defend the right of states to exclude would-be newcomers. In this paper, I challenge the value of collective self-determination in the case of countries like the US, former colonial powers with a history of white supremacist immigration and citizenship policies. I argue for my claim by way of an analogy: There is no value to white neighborhoods in the US, which are the result of racist attitudes and state policies, determining autonomously who should become a neighbor. In light of this commitment, defenders of the US's right to exclude would need to explain why it should be of moral value that a community whose character and composition has been shaped by white supremacy be able to determine its membership on its own terms.

Author's Profile

Torsten Menge
Northwestern University In Qatar

Analytics

Added to PP
2020-01-18

Downloads
132 (#51,903)

6 months
40 (#32,300)

Historical graph of downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.
How can I increase my downloads?