CSC Book Award Recipient 2017

Jörg Fisch, The Right of Self-Determination of Peoples

This year’s recipient of the biennial award for outstanding scholarship in citizenship studies is The Right of Self Determination of Peoples: The Domestication of an Illusion, by Jörg Fisch (translated by Anita Mage. Cambridge University Press, 2015).

This book stands out as a seminal engagement with issues central to citizenship for grappling successfully with the history of a concept that is complex, self-contradictory, and in many ways a fiction. Fisch has joined conceptual breadth with the vivid detail of specific examples to demonstrate the evolution and enactment of an idea that is widely taken as a fundamental human right. One reviewer has described The Right of Self-Determination of Peoples as a masteful work that will be an indispensable reference point for all future discussions. Another has described it as an ambitious and yet elegantly composed study of a complex notion. Highlighting the contrast between the irreducible idealism and the political instrumentality of self-determination, to produce a powerful explanation for the surprising persistence of a notion that is full of paradoxes and yet indispensable in modern political life.

Congratulations to Jörg Fisch, Professor Emeritus of Modern History at the University of Zürich.

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