Transnational Culture: From Diasporic Nationalism to Cultural Citizenship

  • Vytis Čiubrinskas


Transnational migration and the politics of multiculturalism, despite all their discrepancies, are making the cultural dimensions more and more important, as the cultural rights of minorities and immigrants are becoming an essential part of citizenship. The article questions transnational cultural practices in relation to citizenship by exploring two waves of the Lithuanian and other East European emigration to the USA of two periods – after the WWII and after the Cold War. Based on the ethnographic fieldwork done in Chicago in 2006 and 2013 two patterns of transnational culture are revealed – diasporic (homeland) nationalism as well as cultural citizenship. It is sought to prove that the first pattern is shaped in the form of ethno-cultural community in exile and based on the imperative ‘to save the national culture’ which became under siege in homeland, while the second pattern is enacted as inter-ethnic networking and is based on social remittances and habits of moral economy brought from the post-socialist Eastern Europe.