Immigrant to citizen : reciting the Canadian oath of citizenship in a multicultural society
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The Canadian Oath of Citizenship has been a contentious topic in Canada over the past years, particularly in how the recitation of the Oath was perceived to be unconstitutional as it contains a portion where naturalized citizens pledge allegiance to the Queen. Although the courts have dismissed the objections to the Oath, how naturalized citizens interpret the Oath remains largely unexamined. This article explores the experience of 10 naturalized citizens in Canada, examining their experiences and how they make meaning of the Oath. The interviews were analyzed according to the principles of interpretative phenomenological analysis. The results of the research highlight four overarching themes which include the 1) oath as a promise, 2) the dichotomy between Canada and the Queen, 3) perceptions of Canadian identity, and 4) agency. The findings add to our knowledge of how the Oath, as a long held tradition, is perceived by new Canadians in the 21st century
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