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Dr Katie Tonkiss - Aston University. Birmingham, , GB

Dr Katie Tonkiss

Senior Lecturer, Sociology and Policy | Aston University


Dr Tonkiss is concerned with critically interrogating the relationship of citizenship and national identity.



Dr Katie Tonkiss Publication






Dr Tonkiss's research is in the field of critical citizenship studies.

Her work is primarily concerned with critically interrogating the relationship between citizenship and national identity, with a particular interest in theories of post-nationalism.

Her first book, published in 2013, examined national identity and post-national citizenship in the context of intra-EU migration.

Since then she has published two edited volumes, Theorising Noncitizenship and Understanding Statelessness, and her research has also appeared in journals including Citizenship Studies, the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, and Ethnic and Racial Studies.

Katie's current research is focused on examining post-national practices of community and resistance in migration rights struggles, and on exploring the intersection of national identity, belonging and diversity in the UK. At the level of theory, Katie's work engages with the radical reconceptualisation of membership.

Areas of Expertise (7)




HM Sociology




Accomplishments (1)

Migration rights and policy narratives grant, British Academy


Education (1)

University of Birmingham: PhD, Political Science and International Studies 2012

Media Appearances (3)

The Clamour of Nationalism... In Conversation with Sivamohan Valluvan

Aston Originals  online


Join Katie Tonkiss, senior lecturer in sociology at Aston University, for the Centre for Migration and Forced Displacement’s (CMFD) first podcast.

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Spiderman of Paris shows the superhuman demands placed on migrants to earn their citizenship

The Conversation  online


Video footage of a man in Paris scaling four floors of a building to save a child dangling from a balcony has gone viral. The man, Mamoudou Gassama, a 22-year-old undocumented migrant from Mali, arrived in France only a few months ago following a perilous journey through countries including Burkino Faso and Libya and across the Mediterranean. His seemingly superhuman rescue earned him the nickname “the spiderman of the 18th” after the district in Paris where this act of heroism took place.

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History offers Britain an important lesson on shutting down immigration

The Conversation  online


Both in the 1960s and now, the UK encouraged immigration, failed to manage it properly and then tried to deconstruct free movement arrangements. The question now has to be, where does the UK go from here? And there are some important clues in history.

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Articles (3)

'A Baby Is a Baby’: The Asha Protests and the Sociology of Affective Post-Nationalism


2021 Theories of post-nationalism are concerned with deconstructing the relationship between citizenship and national identity. While literature in this field has tended towards macro-institutionalist analysis, recent research has re-articulated post-nationalism as micro-level practice. This article builds on this development by attending to the ‘affective conditions’ of such micro-political practices. The article draws on research into protests in Brisbane in February 2016 to prevent ‘Asha’, a child seeking asylum, from being returned to offshore detention. The analysis of this case demonstrates that affect performs a dual function in the practice of post-nationalism, to catalyse action in solidarity with the noncitizen informed primarily by the emotional resonance of a particular rendering of vulnerability, and in re-imagined solidarity with the co-citizen around a post-national community of feeling. Informed by this analysis, the article highlights the complex and fragile nature of a post-national solidarity dependent on intersecting, overlapping and at times problematic, affective conditions.

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Introduction Superdiversity, policy and governance in Europe

Superdiversity, Policy and Governance in Europe

2020 This introductory chapter provides an overview of superdiversity. Patterns of migration to high-income countries until the 1990s mainly consisted of many migrants coming from a few countries to a small number of places. Around the turn of the 1990s, however, a new pattern of migration and associated diversification was observed. Since its inception, the concept of ‘superdiversity’ was meant to move beyond an observation of ethnic and national diversity, to capture the multidimensional aspect of the processes of diversification driven by new migration, including variables such as gender and age, faith, patterns of distribution, language, labour market experiences, and different immigration statuses. The chapter then considers the politics and governance of superdiversity.

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Cultural education and the good citizen: a systematic analysis of a neoliberal communitarian policy trend

Social Policy Review 32: Analysis and Debate in Social Policy,


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