22 November 2017

Citizenships of Ancestors and Descendants

Like many family historians, I have been taking considerable interest in the constitutional citizenship saga still playing out in Australian federal politics.  Are you aware of the original meaning of the word saga?

Most Australians today are either migrants or descended from migrants over one or more generations.  Even a considerable proportion of indigenous people in Australia have non-indigenous ancestry as well as indigenous ancestry.

Are you fully aware of your own citizenship status?

Are you fully aware of your ancestry over at least three generations?

It is extraordinary there has never been a proper investigation, in previous decades, into the eligibility of people to stand for election to the Australian Parliament.  I have long known I have been ineligible as a consequence of my dual citizenship. Even if I gave up my British citizenship, I would probably still be ineligible to become a federal candidate as a consequence of my eligibility for Irish citizenship.

I have only twice mentioned citizenship on this blog.  Both times were in relation to internment in Australia in the Second World War.

The first time was in 2009.  The second time was in 2011.

Identity derives from many sources, not just ancestry, of course.  This is my family history blog.  I have another blog about identity more broadly.  I write about citizenship in that in 2009, too:

In the Name of Freedom

Virtual Via Nation

I also wrote about the subject in 2010:

World Class and Social Class

Australian Passports are Precious

And in 2011:

Sense and Censuses

Then in 2015 I wrote another one:

In the Name of Nationality

From my own research into the family backgrounds of several federal parliamentarians, quite a few of them are likely to be dual nationals.  As I am ineligible to be a member of the Australian Parliament, so are they.

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