Ethnic and Racial Studies

Published by Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Online ISSN: 1466-4356
Print ISSN: 0141-9870
This article examines the experience of Japanese immigrants and their descendants in Brazil, focusing on their first sixty years: how the group established a secure economic foothold through its mostly agricultural pursuits in Brazilian society; and how this foothold facilitated the process which achieved the upward socio-economic mobility of the group. The review of the existing historical literature is adduced to probe empirically and to test the applicability of the model of ethnic hegemony earlier proposed by Robert Jiobu, specifying the model to the Japanese group in Brazil. The study has probed the model to be useful in explaining the Japanese experience in Brazil in a new and theoretically meaningful way.
This article is concerned with the successive stages of the Nazi ‘euthanasia’ programme between 1933 and 1945. The ‘euthanasia’ programme was ordered by Hitler, and implemented by an ad hoc bureaucracy which bypassed the normative institutions of the state. It also relied upon the active complicity of academic psychiatrists and some directors of mental institutions. This article traces the successive stages of the programme and demonstrates the several links between the murder of the mentally handicapped and the subsequent extermination of the Jews. It then examines the ideological, scientific and social context of these policies, particularly emphasizing the role of cost‐cutting considerations in welfare policy during and after the Depression. It also stresses developments in psychiatric medicine which led otherwise ‘progressive’ psychiatrists to contemplate killing ‘incurable’ patients. The article then examines the impact of Nazi policy on specific institutions and individuals, sometimes with the aid of interviews and material from relatives of the victims concerned. The article also considers sources of individual opposition to these policies, and attempts by the regime to overcome mass distaste for its policies by skilful use of film propaganda. These passages in the article are based upon analysis of the films themselves. The article offers no theoretical, philosophical, or psychological, general explanations or conclusions, regarding the policies it analyses and describes.
Despite the importance of education for shaping individuals' life chances, little research has examined trends and differences in educational attainment for detailed demographic subpopulations in the United States. We use labor market segmentation and cohort replacement theories, linear regression methods, and data from the National Health Interview Survey to understand educational attainment by race/ethnicity, nativity, birth cohort, and sex between 1989 and 2005 in the United States. There have been significant changes in educational attainment over time. In support of the cohort replacement theory, we find that across cohorts, females have enjoyed greater gains in education than men, and for some race/ethnic groups, recent cohorts of women average more years of education than comparable men. And in support of labor market segmentation theories, foreign-born Mexican Americans continue to possess relatively low levels of educational attainment. Our results can aid policymakers in identifying vulnerable populations, and form the base from which to better understand changing disparities in education.
Among American Indians and Alaska Natives, most aspects of ethnicity are tightly associated with the person's tribal origins. Language, history, foods, land, and traditions differ among the hundreds of tribes indigenous to the United States. With this in mind, we ask why almost one million American Indians failed to respond to the tribal affiliation part of the Census 2000 race question. We investigate four hypotheses about why one-third of multiracial American Indians and one-sixth of single-race American Indians did not write any response to the tribal affiliation question: (1) survey item non-response which undermines all fill-in-the-blank questions, (2) a non-salient tribal identity, (3) a genealogy-based affiliation, and (4) a mestizo identity which does not require a tribe. We use multivariate logistic regression models and high-density restricted-use Census 2000 data. We find support for the first two hypotheses and note that predictors differ substantially for single-race versus multiple-race American Indians.
This article examines the debate between key theories of immigrant assimilation by exploring the effect of acculturation types - dissonant, consonant, and selective - on socioeconomic outcomes in young adulthood. Drawing on survey data from the Immigrant Second Generation in Metropolitan New York, we show that while all three types occur, dissonant acculturation is the exception, not the norm, among second generation young adults. Our results also suggest that neither the type of acculturation nor the level of ethnic embeddedness can account for the variation in mobility patterns both across and within second generation groups. These findings lead us to question assumptions about the protective effect of selective acculturation and the negative effect of dissonant acculturation.
This article uses ethnographic and historical data on certain pastoral and agro-pastoral communities in Jammu and Kashmir to illustrate the simultaneous or consecutive use of a variety of cultural features in the construction, maintenance and manipulation of identity. It describes and analyses the context specific uses of religion, language and so on to include as much as to exclude in various economic and political settings. The data exemplify the floating nature of identity, which enables adaptation, assimilation and accommodation to a range of historical contexts within broader regional systems of power.
This study examined differences in religious participation and spirituality among African Americans, Caribbean Blacks (Black Caribbeans) and non-Hispanic Whites. Data are taken from the National Survey of American Life, a nationally representative study of African Americans, Black Caribbeans and non-Hispanic Whites. Selected measures of organizational, nonorganizational and subjective religious participation were examined. African American and Caribbean Blacks were largely similar in their reports of religious involvement; both groups generally indicated higher levels of religious participation than non-Hispanic Whites. African Americans were more likely than Black Caribbeans to be official members of their places of worship, engage in activities (choirs, church clubs) at their place of worship and request prayer from others. Black Caribbeans reported reading religious materials more frequently than African Americans. The discussion notes the importance of examining ethnic differences within the black American population of the United States.
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Well-being Index among Legal Immigrants, 2003 Illness/SeriousMedical Conditions Reported for Prior Year: 
Hospitalization Rates among Legal Immigrants, 2003 Hospitalization Last Year 
Legal Immigrants Covered by Health Insurance, 2003 Covered by Health Insurance 
On the basis of a study of forty health care delivery institutions in Florida, California, and New Jersey, this paper examines the interaction the immigration and health systems in the USA. We investigate barriers to care encountered by the foreign-born, especially unauthorized immigrants, and the systemic contradictions between demand for their labor and the absence of an effective immigration policy. Lack of access and high costs have forced the uninsured poor into a series of coping strategies, which we describe in relation to commercial medicine. We highlight regional differences and the importance of local politics and history in shaping health care alternatives for the foreign-born.
Civil society is the foundation of a healthy democracy but its immigrant element has received little attention. This paper is a case study of immigrant organizations of highly-skilled Asian Indians and Chinese immigrants in a suburban town of Edison, New Jersey. I find that civic participation of Asian Indian immigrants spills over into political incorporation while Chinese immigrant organizations remain marginalized. I argue the local processes of racialization are central in explaining differences in political incorporation of immigrants. In the local context, the Chinese are seen as successful but conformist model minorities and Asian Indians as invaders and troublemakers. The racialization of Asian Indians has resulted in more political activity and higher levels of political visibility of their organizations. The results highlight shortcomings of current assimilation theories, which give little space to civic and political incorporation and view human capital in an unqualifiedly positive light.
Suriname is a developing nation with a colonial legacy of ethnic division and cultural dependence. The post-1945 urbanization of the Surinamese population ushered in new dynamics in ethnicity and assimilation. In the urban context, ethnicity emerged as a pre-eminent organizer of society. However, in this context, assimilation to the unique, evolving Surinamese-Dutch culture is on the rise, signalling a shift from a linguistically and culturally fragmented polity to a linguistically and culturally integrated nation. This article examines the role of ethnicity and assimilation, with particular attention paid to reactive ethnicity and segmented assimilation, on the formation of Suriname as a culturally integrated national entity. The mode of incorporation of each ethnic group into Surinamese society, as well as the economic and demographic strength of each group condition both the salience of group ethnicity and the patterns of group assimilation. The different ethnic groups of Suriname, by subscribing to a common, ethnically neutral lingua franca, have partially overcome traditional cultural and linguistic divisions to form a multi-ethnic national culture. However, historically grounded and persistent ethnic divisions embedded in the nation's institutions continue to preclude ethnic harmony and equitable national development.
Local immigrant histories cannot be truly understood unless they are contextualized within changing global conditions. The ethnic minority status and identity of the Japanese in Brazil have been historically constrained by Japan's changing position in the global order. Immigrants from Japan were officially accepted by the Brazilian government and treated with a certain respect in the early 1900s because of Japan's newly acquired global stature as an emerging industrial power. However, as Japan continued to rise in global status and eventually became an imperialist menace, the Japanese in Brazil were subject to ethnic repression, causing most of them to react by asserting an ultra-nationalist, Japanese identity in opposition to Brazilian discrimination. After a long period of post-war assimilation, the Japanese Brazilians are again asserting a "Japanese" ethnic identity because Japan's current position at the top of the global economic hierarchy has made their ethnic heritage a source of prestige and respect in Brazil.
This article explores the concepts of borders and boundaries in the formation of an Eritrean national identity. The dialectical relationship between the State of Eritrea and its borders towards the Sudan and Ethiopia are addressed in order to analyse how this relationship influences the formation of a 'formal' national identity. The cultural, political, religious and historical configuration of the Eritrean frontiers makes it difficult to demarcate a particular Eritrean identity, distinguishing it from Sudanese ethnic and religious identities or historical-politico and ethnic Ethiopian identities. The Eritrean border conflicts with the Sudan and Ethiopia are used as empirical cases to show how state violence through the mobilization of the multi-ethnic national army is employed in order to manifest a significant other that the 'formal' Eritrean national identity may be contrasted against. The article concludes that the Eritrean boundaries of identity and borders of territory are still in the making, and what they will eventually embrace and contain remains to be seen.
This article compares the impact of post-war immigration on citizenship in three Western states: the United States, Germany and Great Britain. While focusing on national variations in the immigration-citizenship relationship, this comparison suggests some general implications for the institution of citizenship in liberal states: citizenship remains indispensable for integrating immigrants; the content of citizenship may change, in deviation from nationhood traditions; and citizenship is becoming increasingly multicultural.
Percentage of Children Requiring a Racial Definition, Presented by Child's Race/Ethnicity Racial/Ethnic Group non-Hispanic white non-Hispanic black Hispanic  
This paper examines whether children of marginalized racial/ethnic groups have an awareness of race at earlier ages than youth from non-marginalized groups, documents their experiences with racial discrimination, and utilizes a modified racism-related stress model to explore the relationship between perceived racial discrimination and self-esteem. Data were collected for non-Hispanic black, non-Hispanic white, and Hispanic children aged 7 - 12 using face-to-face interviews (n = 175). The concept of race was measured by assessing whether children could define race, if not a standard definition was provided. Racial discrimination was measured using the Williams Every-day-Discrimination Scale, self-esteem was measured using the Rosenberg Scale, and ethnic identity was assessed using the Multi-group Ethnic Identity Measure. Non-Hispanic black children were able to define race more accurately, but overall, Hispanic children encountered more racial discrimination, with frequent reports of ethnic slurs. Additionally, after accounting for ethnic identity, perceived racial discrimination remained a salient stressor that contributed to low self-esteem.
Recently sociological analysis of what used to be identified as 'race' and 'race relations' has shifted to racism as an ideology and racialization as a process that ascribes physical and cultural differences to individuals and groups. While scholars have critically examined 'race' and 'race relations', the concept of racialization has received insufficient systematic attention. The purpose of this article is to trace the genealogy of concepts of racialization and deracialization and to demonstrate that the meaning of these designations has changed since their appearance in the late-nineteenth century to the emergence of racialization in contemporary debates on effects of racism; and to trace the different trajectories of racialization from the centre and from the periphery.
It is often assumed that states within the same regime-type pursue similar policies towards minorities. An imperial state, for instance, which has already consolidated its rule over its territory and subject peoples (such as the Hapsburg Empire in the nineteenth century or the Ottoman Empire in the sixteenth century) tends to pursue restrained policies towards marginal groups. Ordinarily, one could expect such states not to enforce cultural or religious homogeneity, for instance, given the costs associated with communication, transportation, the maintenance of public order and other factors. This article argues that although the Hapsburg and Ottoman states belong to the same regime-type (that is, they were both empires), their specific policies and general approach to ethnic and other minorities diverged significantly. This argument is illustrated through the two empires' policies towards their Gypsy/Romani populations.
In South Africa, a country in which the manipulation of ethnicity was at the heart of the government's attempts to establish control over the majority African population, ethnic mobilization during the liberation struggle was singularly unsuccessful. The one exception was Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi's controversial Inkatha movement. This article suggests that one of the reasons for Inkatha's successes was the astute way in which the organization and, in particular, Buthelezi played on gendered notions of 'home' and 'homeland'. Historically, apartheid constructed notions of home and space differently for women and men and Inkatha was able to draw upon and manipulate these differences to produce a powerfully felt response. Thus, for men, many of them migrant workers in South Africa's cities, the notion of 'home' implied a return to patriarchal values and male domestic control in a historically constituted 'homeland'; for women, Buthelezi emphasized the new 'modern' opportunities opened up by the KwaZulu homeland, and the importance of their 'God-given' gifts of motherhood.
In the exploration of the relationships between ethnicity, national identity, and symbolic building of the region, this article deals with a key issue: the achievements and limitations of the assimilation of culturally heterogeneous populations by European nation-states. The modern Spanish national identity (at times shown as purely political) has included and still includes cultural elements (above all, the spread of the Spanish language). This meant that the ethnicity of the Valencians (a population with autonomous political structures until their violent destruction in 1707) had to be redefined as a regional identity in order to avoid coming into conflict with national identity. This re-working excluded the Catalan language, spoken by most of the inhabitants of the region, from the political sphere. In the long term, this cultural characteristic became stigmatized, which favoured its undercommunication to the extent that a process of language shift was initiated. This case study highlights the historical analysis of ethnic identity and the instability of its integration into national structures.
Nearly a decade ago the notion of segmented assimilation was first introduced to elucidate the differential patterns of incorporation of recent immigrants into American society (Portes 1995). The concept took stock of two concomitant trends (a) the rapid increase in migration to the United States, particularly from Asia and Latin America since the 1970s and (b) sensible changes in the character and quality of employment resulting from industrial re-composition and global integration during the same period. Segmented assimilation called for a nuanced understanding of immigrant prospects showing that absorption into the receiving society does not occur monolithically—it is affected by factors such as immigrants’ knowledge and skills, the type of their reception in areas of destination, and even the proximity of specific groups with which immigrant children relate at the local level. Variations resulting from the interaction of such factors matter especially in the age of globalization when employment alternatives are significantly different from those that were available to newcomers in the late 19th or early 20th centuries.
This study was prompted by concerns about the ways in which immigrant organizations, especially those of a transnational character, may retard or prevent political integration among recent migrants to the United States. For this purpose, we constructed an inventory of all organizations created by Colombian, Dominican, and Mexican immigrants in the United States, interviewed leaders of the twenty largest from each group in person, and conducted a survey of 178 additional organizations by telephone or Internet. Results reveal a near-absence of perceived conflict between transnational activism and political incorporation. Almost without exception, leaders assert that there was no contradiction between home country loyalties and activities and U.S. citizenship and voting. These results appear to reflect genuine conviction, rather than any social desirability syndrome. Objective indicators show that most organizations maintain close ties with U.S. political authorities at various levels and engage in a number of U.S.-focused civic and political activities. Determinants of such engagement are examined. Implications of results for theory and public policy are discussed.
This paper discusses the impact of growing joblessness and dwindling work opportunities on inner-city areas in America. The lack of low-skilled manual work in the inner city is linked to poverty, crime, family dissolution and the social life of neighbourhoods. The paper discusses this impact at a neighbourhood-wide, family and individual level, noting the interaction between these levels and the intergenerational repercussions that result. The paper goes on to look at race in this context, identifying a new form of cultural racism. It examines the way race becomes an issue as black people become disproportionately represented in neighbourhoods where there is a high ratio of joblessless and very few work opportunities. The paper shows how this segregation plus its interaction with other changes in society, escalates rates of neighbourhood joblessness and compounds existing problems in these neighbourhoods. Finally the paper examines the role of public policy, the way it has exacerbated inner-city joblessness and how it attempted to resolve the problem, but failed. The paper concludes by pointing to a way forward to improve work opportunities for all sectors of society that are struggling to make ends meet, including inner-city poor and the working- and middle- classes.
Examined the process of linguistic adaptation among children of immigrants and the extent to which distinct language types exist between foreign monolingualism and a full transition to English. While complete linguistic assimilation remains the normative outcome and is widely perceived as desirable, the authors examined alternative theories holding that selective rather than full acculturation is a preferable alternative for immigrant children and their families. For this purpose effects of fluent bilingualism, indicative of selective acculturation, are contrasted with other types of linguistic adaptation on various measures of family conflict, solidarity and personality. Data were taken from the Children of Immigrants Longitudinal Study [CILS], which have been used in several previous studies of the second generation. Analyses the the interactive effects of parental and children's knowledge of English on family relations and personality outcomes and the effects of gender differences throughout the process. Results revealed that a plurality of second generation linguistic adaptation types exists in reality and that, among them, fluent bilingualism is consistently preferable. Theoretical and policy implications of these and other results are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
This paper analyzes gaps in the college graduation rates of third-generation Ashkenazim and Mizrahim (the two major ethnic groups among Israeli Jews), in comparison to the same gaps among members of the second generation. The empirical analyses have been performed using a special file of the 1995 Israeli census which matched records of respondents to their parents in the 1983 Census, thereby allowing identification of the ethnicity of the third generation for a representative sample of men and women, 25-34 years of age in 1995, as well as the identification of persons of mixed ethnicity. The results suggest that the gaps between the two major ethnic groups are not smaller in the third generation than in the second generation. Persons of mixed ethnicity -- of both the second and third generations -- are located about midway between the two ethnic groups with respect to their college graduation rates. Much of the ethnic-based gap in college graduation is due to differences in family background, especially among women. The same pattern of results is observed among persons of mixed ethnicity: holding parental characteristics constant, women of mixed ethnicity are as likely as Ashkenazi women to be college graduates, while among men, the chances of college graduation depend on the mother's ethnic origin. We discuss the implications of these results for the future of ethnic-based stratification in Israel.
This article approaches the study of ethnic organization and reorganization from an international and historical perspective. Focusing on Filipinos in the United States, it argues that the identities of immigrants (particularly of immigrants of colour) have been shaped not only by the social location of their group within the host society but also by the position of their country within the global racial order. Couching the study of Filipino American ethnicity within the wider context of US‐Philippine relations, this article examines the impact that US colonial policies, recruitment practices and labour conditions have had on the regional and class composition ‐ and thus on the process of group formation and differentiation ‐ of Filipinos in the United States. It compares the ethnic organization and reorganization of three different cohorts of Filipino immigrants: the pre‐World War II agricultural labourers to Hawaii; the pre‐1970 Filipino sailors in the US Navy; and the post‐1965 family reunification and occupational immigrants. In the first two cohorts, the regional divisions among Filipinos were largely minimized by their similar class position. In contrast, in the post‐1965 period, regional divisions are often compounded by class divisions, making it more difficult for the contemporary Filipino populations to build a comprehensive group consciousness. By examining the regional and class differentiation among Filipinos in the United States, this article challenges the homogeneous descriptions of communities of colour and moves the field of race relations away from a black‐white paradigm to one that explores relations within racially‐defined groups.
In the decades between 1896 and the mid-1960s it was unusual for the federal government to act to defend or advance Black Americans' interests. In this article two such rare instances are analysed. Both occurred in the 1920s, a decade with a distinctive political complexion. In 1923 Black Americans called upon the federal government's Veterans Bureau [VB] to make good its assurance that African Americans would staff a newly opened hospital in Tuskegee, Alabama, for blacks. At the end of the decade, the Superintendent of Prisons was petitioned to abrogate the new practice at the federal penitentiary in Atlanta, Georgia, of leasing out exclusively Black American prisoners to local governments for contract work. Each case was formulated and justified within the prejudicial framework of segregated race relations, but Black Americans sought fair treatment within its unsalubrious confines. The cases demonstrate the capacity of the federal government to act on racial issues when political circumstances permitted.
Despite the increase in scholarly attention to citizenship, few studies have examined how immigrants acquire formal citizenship through naturalization. We employ a qualitative, longitudinal case-study approach to examine whether immigrants naturalize in the U.S. or not, and how they understand naturalization and citizenship in the post-1996 Welfare Reform period. We found that for many immigrants, U.S. citizenship does not necessarily signify permanent settlement or incorporation in the U.S. Indeed, U.S. citizenship allowed older immigrants to continue a pattern of transnational residence, challenging the association between citizenship and permanent incorporation in a single locale and citizenship and integration. Our findings challenge both the national and post-national perspectives and argues for a transnational view of citizenship.
Much has been written in a short space of time about the rapid rise and equally sharp decline of Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party in Australia. Many of these studies have alluded to the importance of the race issue for One Nation, but argued that ultimately the anti-immigrant and anti-aboriginal sentiments associated with the party failed to mobilize voters. This study examines the debate using a multilevel analysis of One Nation [ON] support in the 148 federal electorates. The competing explanations for ON support are tested using a combination of survey data and aggregate political, demographic and socio-economic statistics. The results show that race and immigration were major factors mobilizing ON supporters, and concerns about economic insecurity were of lesser importance. Conclusions are drawn on the extent to which ON's emergence corresponds to the growth in radical right populism in many continental European nations.
This article examines the ways in which digital technology is being used in contemporary forms of racist culture within white nationalist movements. It argues that new types of racist culture are made possible in cyberspace. This both challenges popular conceptions of what 'The Racist' is supposed to look like and points the ways in which technological innovation is reinvigorating anti-Semitism and racisms that work in and through the boundaries of nation-states. It is argued that it is possible to situate racism and white nationalism at the centre of the so-called postmodern condition.
I argue that Macedonia's internal conditions set the stage for interethnic tension but did not preordain war. Ethnic inequality, cultural differences, economic troubles and political underdevelopment are examined and ruled insufficient to produce war conditions. The spark that set Macedonia alight was the proliferation of Albanian paramilitaries from Kosovo. NATO's failure to disarm and disband the Kosovo Liberation Army allowed a major security threat to develop at MacedoniaÕs doorstep. Hence, this case teaches us that porous borders, diasporic networks, and the availability of young men and weapons are the key ingredients of ethnic war-making. The concerted attention of the EU saved Macedonia from a descent into chaos, although it did so by extracting concessions not from the insurgents but from the Macedonian regime. The EU's mix of financial incentives and diplomatic pressure worked primarily because Macedonia was too weak and too poor to offer resistance.
This essay sketches the ambivalent relationship of Hebraism and Hellenism from ancient times to the foundation of modern Israel. It analyses classical Greek influence on the Jewish Enlightenment (the Haskalah) and modern Jewish nationalism, particularly as reflected in Hebrew literature. Greece's successful struggle for independence from Ottoman Turkey in the 1820s showed the early Zionists that an ancient nation could be resurrected. Also, the ancient Greek ideal of physical education, revived in nineteenth-century Europe, radically transformed both Christian and Jewish attitudes to the body, giving rise to two related movements, "muscular Christianity" and "muscular Judaism". As the assimilationist attempts of the Haskalah broke down in the late nineteenth century under the burden of anti-Semitism and European racial nationalism, "muscular Judaism" was incorporated into Zionism. Jewish nationalists largely rejected rabbinic spirituality, non-belligerence and the disdain for athleticism which had dominated Jewish life after Rome destroyed the Jewish state in 70 CE.
Local and migrant unions jointly rally against wage cuts and employment, October 1998, Hong Kong (AMC/MFA 1999: 109)
AMC staff visiting Jojo Sanchez, OWWA officer, Singapore (AMC/ MFA 1999: 175)  
Founding meeting of MFA , May 1994, Taiwan (AMC/MFA 1999: 41)  
This article offers a cultural interpretation of transnational solidarities that Asian political activists are generating through electronic telecommunications networks. Its focus is on the experiences of the Migrant Forum in Asia [MFA], a network of non-government organizations that question issues of human rights, citizenship and working conditions of labour migrants in the Asian region. MFA's networking activities are being transformed as email enables daily conversations across multiple national borders, and new 'imagined' communities of political action have emerged. English has been chosen as the language of solidarity, and photographs have become important in communicating activities and ideas. These media are innovative modes of transnational communication and shape political spaces that exist in symbiotic relation to the 'real'. Attention to these practices, spaces and the symbolic meanings activists attach to these communities helps to illuminate a cultural politics of transnational activism in this region.
This article investigates social and cultural aspects of "teenage life" among south Asian girls in Britain, particularly their experiences of relationships with boys and the extent to which they become involved in sexual activities. In-depth interviews were carried out with teenage girls and young women from Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi backgrounds and a comparative group of white British girls, in four schools and one college in the South and West Health Authority Region. Asian teenage girls conformed to different behavioural norms than their white peers. They were influenced by cultural traditions, religious obligations, family loyalties and community expectations. Few Asian girls became involved in relationships or sexual activities. However, once removed from the parental home, the influence of parents and their Asian community, their social and sexual behaviour changes; they experience an independence which often involves relationships and sexual activities. In contrast, white teenage girls experienced a different set of pressures which came from peers and boyfriends and accepted involvement with boys and sexual activity.
Clara Law's film Floating Life was the first Australian film to be nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Film, and the first Australian film to deal with migrant Hong Kong Chinese identities 'from inside'. From perspectives of transnational Chinese migration and flexible citizenship, this article looks at Floating Life as a Hong Kong Chinese migrant reading of Australia, which defamiliarizes and recontextualizes familiar Australian localities and geopolitical formations, contrasting them with the film's other principal loci of Hong Kong and Germany. It also interprets the film as a neo-Confucian study of family disintegration in a migrant context, and an exploration of notions of home and identity.
Students of ethnic identity have recently begun to recognize the role of the state in causing identity shift. Constructivists, in particular, focus on the importance of state institutions and policies in creating new identities and transforming old ones. This article focuses on identity creation and change in Bashkortostan, an ethnic region within the Russian Federation. It shows how, at the beginning of the twentieth century, the Russian/Soviet state created new ethnic identities from pre-existing regional, estate-based and religious identities. It also shows how later changes in state institutions and policies played a crucial role in determining the direction of identity change among a mixed population, straddling the geographical and cultural boundaries between the Tatar and Bashkir ethnic groups. By tracing the impact of the state on one ethnic group over an extended time-period, this article shows that state actions can lead to both instrumental and culturally-based shifts in ethnic identity.
This article investigates what narrations on the symbolic complex of virginity in the life-stories of second-generation women of Moroccan descent in The Netherlands can tell us about the ways these women construct, maintain and combine their various social identifications. It is demonstrated that these biographical narratives contain numerous episodes in which the women improvise upon and shift the meanings of Moroccan core-values like virginity and obedience to one's parents. It is argued that they do so in ways that allow their identifying with values that are cherished within Moroccan circles to be combined with upholding cultural notions that are highly valued by Dutch peers with whom they also identify. It is also pointed out, however, that their drawing upon multicultural capital to create new strategies of living is not without constraints.
The paper poses the question: what are the epistemological consequences of an unreflexive use of the concept of community as the privileged container of cultural difference? The argument is made that contemporary notions of ethnic minority communities as deployed in official and demotic discourse have a complex history which may usefully be traced through classical sociological and anthropological thinking on the idea of community as connoting the premodern and non-Western. This is supplemented by a discussion of the contribution of ideas from these disciplines to contemporary imaginings of ethnic difference in 'multicultural' Britain.
This article is an exploration of theoretical approaches to 'difference' in relation to black and Asian communities in Britain. It argues that, in the wake of the splintering of 'black' as a politically inclusive term, two opposed versions of difference have emerged to dominate understandings of race and ethnicity, and have been applied differentially to African-Caribbean and Asian identities. Black/African-Caribbean identities have been theorized through the 'politics of difference', whereas Asian groups have been transfixed through attributions of 'cultural difference'. The essay is a challenge to this theoretical dichotomy, and calls for a reworking of notions of difference to fully account for the intersection of culture and structure, and the application of theory to empirical accounts of identity creation.
This article explores the consequences of rapidly fissuring binary models of community and progress in a national and global context. It suggests that this is a dominant (black/white) paradigm used to map both mainstream and particularly liminal sites of cultural/political articulation. Furthermore, it argues that such models of imputed progress, reason and civility contain the narcissistic residue of an earlier liberal encounter: namely, the fetish quality attached to the black body as abject text and privileged humanist ontology by the twentieth-century European movement of liberal humanism. The article argues that recent attempts to rethink this position vis à vis the European Holocaust have actually rehearsed the logic, both of fetish and binarism. Moreover, that this stasis in liberal thinking on issues of race and violence has heightened the attraction of those political movements characterized by cultural absolutism. The essay suggests that acknowledgement of the 'public secret' which underwrites liberal narrative stasis is the first step towards a more appropriate cultural grammar.
This article examines the issue of ethnic and social identity formation among the minority peoples who span the frontier zones of China, Burma and Thailand. Seeking to get beyond "multiple identities" based on dichotomies of origin and destination, I explore the way in which identities are "trans-localized" in the context of current transnational migration. In particular, I investigate the discursive narratives of Chinese identity among the people officially not categorized as "Chinese" but as "Hani" in China and as "Akha/hill tribes" in Thailand. "Trans-localized Chinese identity" represents the socio-cultural capital of transnational social networks through the personal experiences of the migrants and the alternative survival strategy against externally imagined ethnic categories enforced by various nation-states. The study draws on findings from anthropological fieldwork carried out over the years 1994-1998.
The events in Britain since the beginning of the new millennium starkly and dramatically reflect the continued salience of racial and ethnic difference. In media, political and academic discourse, the struggles over nationhood and multiculturalism, the duties of citizenship and the right to cultural expression, similarity and difference have been played out against global and national backdrops, and across many local stages. The articles in this volume aim to explore the contours of this changing terrain, and suggest new avenues for research and theorization. They are primarily an engagement with British debates and events, but seek to place these within a broader global and diasporic context. The aim of this introductory article is to sketch the background to the events that surround the production of these articles, to outline a broad conceptual overview of the current academic debates and to explore the links between each contribution.
The problematic relationship between 'Britishness' and the identities of UK ethnic minorities is further complicated in Scotland by the increasing salience of the Scottish dimension. This article discusses the relationship between reformulations of 'post-British' national identities, and the position of Scottish Pakistani-Muslims. The study focuses on the preferred identities of young Pakistani-Scots in West Central Scotland, reporting chiefly on the results of the modified Twenty Statement Test [TST] as administered to sixty-three Scottish-Pakistani teenagers aged between fourteen and seventeen years, estimated as a significant percentage of the Glasgow Pakistani population in this age range. Religious, ethnic and nationality labels are all adopted by these respondents. Where there are no constraints on their identity labels, religious (Muslim) statements predominate, and where a choice of labels is provided, dual ethnicity labels are preferred. The results are theorized in relation to present deficiencies in the acceptance of plural or 'hyphenate' identities within the United Kingdom.
This article explores the relationship between demographic trends and nationalist ideologies through an analysis of fertility policies in France, Romania, Singapore and Israel. Each of these countries has sought to increase birthrates through government initiatives. I examine the extent to which pronatalist programmes in these countries reflect ethno-nationalist ideologies, as opposed to more inclusive civic/cultural nationalist visions, and find that policies are moving in a more civic/cultural nationalist direction. Pronatalist policies are less often specifically aimed at dominant racial/ethnic groups and are less oriented towards 'traditional' gender roles. I argue that ethno-nationalist visions of the nation may become less influential, in part due to demographic imperatives.
Research on interethnic relationships in urban neighbourhoods tends to focus on how the 'they' in a 'we/they' divide along ethnic lines is constructed. This article argues that such research often takes the 'we' for granted. The result is a slightly homogeneous picture of the native residents, as if they form one single group with an attitude towards migrants that can be explained en bloc. Dissecting an empirical complex picture of how native Dutch residents develop relationships with migrant neighbours, a case study of a Rotterdam neighbourhood is used to show that four routes to discriminatory vocabulary can be distinguished. By way of discussing these four routes, the article argues that the different theoretical perspectives should not be seen as an either/or choice, but that they need to be combined. In many accounts of racism and discrimination, the nuances within politically incorrect, discriminatory vocabulary are insufficiently stressed. These nuances, it is argued, relate to different sorts of conflict that need to be theorized.
This article deals with political mobilization among immigrants from the Former Soviet Union [FSU] in Israel. Political patterns among these immigrants are examined through an analysis of their voting in the 1999 Israeli elections for Parliament and Prime Minister. The data are derived from a nationwide survey, conducted in August–September 1999, based on a representative sample of 707 adult immigrants (18 years and over) who came to Israel between January 1990 and July 1999. Our findings indicate that immigrants from the FSU in Israel have adopted an ethnic mobilization strategy through which they seek to integrate in Israel as a distinct group, not just as individuals. This mobilization strategy counts on the immigrants' points of strength while at the same time manipulating the weak points of the Israeli political and social structure. Throughout our analysis the reactive and the competitive approaches towards ethnic mobilization are juxtaposed and examined.
In 2011, al-Qaeda leader, Osama Bin Laden, was killed in Pakistan and the US president, Barack Obama, concluded a decade of global ‘war against terror’. In light of this, it seems only sensible to explore what implications the post-9/11 international developments have had on a local basis in specific national contexts. With this in mind, this article focuses on Denmark and discusses how the critical event of 9/11 motivated a security/integration response, including various pre-emptive measures that have cast the Muslim population as the usual suspects. It will discuss how these changes have affected the everyday lives of ordinary Danish Muslims over the last ten years and changed the relationship between majorities and minorities. Finally, it will also examine how and why recent national and international events have created the potential for another shift in majority–minority relations.
In this paper I investigate the resonance of the volume The Empire Strikes Back within the debates on racism in Germany since the late 1970s. I am interested in this long-term intellectual exchange in light of the current need to conceptualize racism in a European framework and thereby reflect upon the characteristics, concepts and possibilities of such a framework. I begin by situating the debate at that time within the context of the New Left. What connected both situations, in Germany and the UK, was an inscription of the then-ongoing anti-colonial and decolonial struggles of the South in the North, not least through the ‘retaliatory effect’ of migration movements and struggles of migration arriving in Europe. I argue that the understandings of racism and anti-racism are grounded in a materialist framework and that the concept of articulation helped and continues to help thinking the complexity and heterogeneity of the social.
Not only in Sweden, but also in several international studies, it has been shown that a non-negligible proportion of the European population subscribes to classical anti-Semitic notions, and that anti-Semitism is a phenomenon that is still very much present in post-1945 Europe, more so in some countries than others. Moreover, there is evidence of an increase in anti-Semitic attitudes and incidents in recent decades. The latter is also depicted as being related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, especially the Israeli military operation Cast Lead of 2008-2009 which resulted in Jews being blamed for the political and military actions of the State of Israel. As prejudice is acquired in the early years of socialization, and/or is innate and fairly stable over the life cycle, examining adolescents' attitudes is vitally important because they can help us to understand what might happen in the future.Hence, the aim of this study is to study three interrelated questions: Which factors explain anti-Semitism among secondary school youths in Sweden? Is religious affiliation an important factor in explaining anti-Semitism among Swedish youth? Has anti-Semitism among Swedish secondary school youths increased between 2003 and 2009? Using two unique surveys of secondary school students in Sweden for the years 2003 and 2009, we try to address the above questions. The results of our analysis show that in general anti-Semitism amongst Swedish youths is in line with the results of earlier studies. However, in contrast to the views of the general public, it has not increased during the examined period but has instead decreased. Moreover, we show that anti-Semitism has increased amongst Muslim youth.
The Empire Strikes Back made a landmark and sometimes controversial intervention in the scholarship of ethnicity and race when it was first published. This article considers both the continuities and breaks that linked and separated the volume from the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies' work and tradition that preceded it. It also suggests that the balance between ethnographic engagement and critical scholarship sets up a necessarily iterative process that values both but also recognizes the differences between the two. Such iteration speaks also to the manner in which the study of contemporary migration and its consequences demands both more self-conscious links between the study of migration and the scholarship of racial formation and ethnic identity.
Top-cited authors
Steven Vertovec
  • Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity
Alejandro Portes
  • University of Miami School of Law
Thomas Faist
  • Bielefeld University
William Haller
  • Clemson University
Patricia Fernandez-Kelly
  • Princeton University