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date: 15 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Dual citizenship was historically disfavored by states. In the nineteenth century, the incidence of dual nationality threatened bilateral relations as states contested control over individuals. Although dual nationality persisted as states refused to harmonize nationality practice, states used expatriation, election, and renunciation as tools to suppress the status. Through international law doctrines and bilateral arrangements, the negative consequences of dual nationality were mitigated by the mid-twentieth century. However, sticky social norms against the status, the perception of emigrants as traitors to states of the Global South, and the largely unfounded association of dual nationality with security threats retarded acceptances of the status. More recently, a clear majority of states have come to tolerate and even embrace dual citizenship as advancing state policies, especially among immigrant-source states. Individuals increasingly value the status for instrumental and sentimental reasons. Even though dual citizenship challenges equality norms, this acceptance is unlikely to be reversed.

Keywords: dual citizenship, dual nationality, sovereignty, diplomatic protection, diaspora, expatriation, allegiance

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