Blood and culture?: Contemporary German nationhood and the political discourse on migrants and immigration in Germany
This thesis investigates to what extent the commonly ascribed ethno-cultural definition of German nationhood shapes the political debate on migrants and immigration in Germany. The analysis of parliamentary debate transcripts and interviews with influential policymakers and high-ranking civil servants has revealed that German nationhood in the context of immigration debate is defined through civic values rather than ethno-cultural identity. As a result, the political debate on migrants and immigration in the German parliament make no reference to an ethno-cultural conception of German nationhood. Instead there is a strong consensus among German policymakers that the civic, democratic and legalistic values that are enshrined in the German constitution define German nationhood.