Solidarity pp 273-279 | Cite as

Solidarity and Citizenship

  • Steven Lukes
Part of the Philosophical Studies in Contemporary Culture book series (PSCC, volume 5)


These two words are words to be treated with a certain caution. They are rhetorical words that are used in many different ways and for a variety of purposes. Consider the different uses of “solidarity” by Christians, trade unionists, humanists, Fascists. Each conjures up a different set of connotations and suggests a different set of social relations and a different image of social cooperation; and each tends to have a different scope of application. With whom are we supposed to be solidary? With co-religionists, with the poor and suffering, with fellow workers, with fellow members of our nation or State? As for “citizenship”, it is remarkable how popular this term has become, both in the rhetoric of our politicians and journalists, but also among academic commentators. Everyone is interested in citizenship and in favor of taking it seriously, even if they do not all agree about what taking it seriously would involve.


Social Solidarity Political Ethic Advanced Industrial Society Local Government Body Equal Liberty 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Steven Lukes
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Political and Social SciencesUniversity of SienaItaly

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