An Introduction to Immigrant Incorporation Studies: European Perspectives 9789048523153

The combination of increased migration, new technologies, and growing wealth have changed the face of Europe: today, one

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Table of contents :
List of Tables and Figures
1. Immigrant Incorporation Studies in Europe An Introduction
Part 1: Theoretical Perspectives
2. Citizenship Theories and Migration
3. Assimilation
4. Multicultural Models
5. Race, Racism and Class Evolving Paradigms and Perspectives
6. Integration and Gender
Part 2: Immigrant Incorporation in Action
7. Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children Creating Opportunities for ‘New’ Citizens
8. Understanding the Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets
9. Immigrant Entrepreneurship
10. Immigrants’ Political Incorporation
11. Health
12. Religion
13. From Others to Artists? Immigrant and Ethnic Minority Art
14. Sport and Migration in the Global Context
Part 3: Regulation of Immigrant Incorporation
15. European Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories
16. Between National and Local Integration Policies
17. Beyond Immigrant Integration Debates and Policies An EU Multicultural Citizenship?
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An Introduction to Immigrant Incorporation Studies


International Migration, Integration and Social Cohesion in Europe The IMISCOE Research Network unites researchers from some 30 institutes specialising in studies of international migration, integration and social cohesion in Europe. What began in 2004 as a Network of Excellence sponsored by the Sixth Framework Programme of the European Commission became, as of April 2009, an independent self-funding endeavour. IMISCOE promotes integrated, multidisciplinary and globally comparative research led by scholars from various branches of the economic and social sciences, the humanities and law. The network furthers existing studies and pioneers new scholarship on migration and migrant integration. Encouraging innovative lines of inquiry key to European policymaking and governance is also a priority. The IMISCOE-Amsterdam University Press Series makes the network’s findings and results available to researchers, policymakers and practitioners, the media and other interested stakeholders. High-quality manuscripts are evaluated by external peer reviews and the IMISCOE Editorial Committee. The committee comprises the following members: Tiziana Caponio, Department of Political Studies, University of Turin / Forum for International and European Research on Immigration (FIERI), Turin, Italy Michael Collyer, Sussex Centre for Migration Research (SCMR), University of Sussex, United Kingdom Rosita Fibbi, Swiss Forum for Migration and Population Studies (SFM), University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland / Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lausanne Agata Górny, Centre of Migration Research (CMR) / Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw, Poland Albert Kraler, International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), Vienna, Austria Jorge Malheiros, Centre of Geographical Studies (CEG), University of Lisbon, Portugal Jean-Michel Lafleur, Center for Ethnic and Migration Studies (CEDEM), University of Liège, Belgium Eva Østergaard-Nielsen, Department of Political Science, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain Marlou Schrover, Institute for History, Leiden University, The Netherlands Patrick Simon, National Demographic Institute (INED), Paris, France IMISCOE Policy Briefs and more information on the network can be found at

An Introduction to Immigrant Incorporation Studies European Perspectives

edited by Marco Martiniello and Jan Rath

IMISCOE Research

Cover design: Studio Jan de Boer BNO, Amsterdam Typesetting: V3-Services, Baarn Amsterdam University Press English-language titles are distributed in the US and Canada by the University of Chicago Press. ISBN 978 90 8964 648 4 e-ISBN 978 90 4852 315 3 (pdf) NUR 747 © Marco Martiniello & Jan Rath / Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam 2014 All rights reserved. Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this book may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise) without the written permission of both the copyright owners and the authors of the book.


List of Tables and Figures



Immigrant Incorporation Studies in Europe An Introduction Marco Martiniello and Jan Rath



Citizenship Theories and Migration Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto


3 Assimilation Richard Alba and Victor Nee



Multicultural Models John Eade and Paolo Ruspini



Race, Racism and Class Evolving Paradigms and Perspectives John Solomos



Integration and Gender Marlou Schrover



Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children Creating Opportunities for ‘New’ Citizens Martha Montero-Sieburth



Understanding the Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets Michael Samers


Immigrant Entrepreneurship Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath


10 Immigrants’ Political Incorporation Irene Bloemraad and Floris Vermeulen


11 Health Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin


12 Religion Valérie Amiraux


13 From Others to Artists? Immigrant and Ethnic Minority Art Wiebke Sievers


14 Sport and Migration in the Global Context Richard Giulianotti



PART 3  REGULATION OF IMMIGRANT INCORPORATION 15 European Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories Patrick R. Ireland 16 Between National and Local Integration Policies Han Entzinger and Peter Scholten

345 371

EPILOGUE 17 Beyond Immigrant Integration Debates and Policies An EU Multicultural Citizenship? Marco Martiniello


List of Tables and Figures

Table 9.1 Table 9.2 Table 15.1 Figure 11.1 Figure 11.2

Evolution of share of self-employment in total nonagricultural employment by place of birth in OECD countries, 1998-2008 (%) 198 A typology of the opportunity structure: Markets split according to accessibility and growth potential 206 European welfare state regimes and incorporation regimes356 Health determinants 257 Conceptual framework integrating possible explanations of the relation between ethnicity and health 259


1  Immigrant Incorporation Studies in Europe An Introduction Marco Martiniello and Jan Rath

Summary The process of immigrant incorporation has many different names and is described and analysed using a variety of terms: inclusion, adjustment, absorption, integration, assimilation, et cetera. In Europe the concept of ‘integration’ is popular. This rather fuzzy notion can refer to a number of different realities. Fortunately, a growing number of scholars in Europe have taken an interest in the study of these issues, producing a large body of literature. This chapter presents some of these European scholars and introduces readers to scholarship that matters for Europe.

*** Estimates of the population of Europe today vary between 502 million1 and 738 million.2 The exact number depends on the way Europe is defined, which is a matter of contention. Indeed, there is no consensus about the precise location of Europe’s boundaries and its exact geographic extent. Some would restrict Europe to the six founding states of the European Community, also recently called ‘Old Europe’ with a somewhat ironic undertone. Others extend Europe to the 28 member states of the present European Union (EU), including some of the countries that belonged to the Soviet Empire before the fall of the Berlin Wall. Some also count the non-EU countries situated on the European peninsula (or some of them, including the Holy See), while others would include countries like the Ukraine, the Russian Federation and Turkey. This lack of 1 2

Situation as of 1 January 2011, according to EU statistics (http://epp.eurostat. election=1&footnotes=yes&labeling=labels&plugin=1). According to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (

What is Europe?


Ambiguous subject

Marco Martiniello and Jan Rath

consensus sometimes leads to contradictions. For example, the Ukraine and Turkey are frequently considered to be outside the European realm – or at most are considered to be neighbouring states with which Europe should develop privileged cooperation. But they have, at the same time, been wholeheartedly welcomed as members or participants in the Council of Europe, the Eurovision Song Contest and the UEFA Championships. Clearly, Europe is not just a matter of geography and thus a particular place on the globe. For those who consider Europe to be a political entity, made up only of the countries that are members of the EU, Switzerland would not be counted as a part of Europe. Alternatively, a view of Europe as a group of countries bound by a shared history and traditions of Christianity, JudeoChristianity and Christian-humanism would exclude the many indigenous Muslims in Central Europe, as well as second- and third-generation Muslim immigrants living in Europe. But the subjects of current and former colonial areas elsewhere in the world might well be included as true Europeans, even though they live several thousand kilometres away from Europe’s geographical heart. The very fact that Europe’s nature is the subject of such ongoing debate tells us that Europe is still under construction. Yet, as witnessed in electoral campaigns across the EU, many people find it fundamentally important to achieve clarity about Europe’s identity and the rules of membership. This situation is made even more complex by the international mobility that we have witnessed since the Second World War. Questions of identity, belongingness, membership and rights have been blurred and become more contested. Today, one out of ten Europeans is foreign-born. Applying a ‘broad’ definition of Europe, the United Nations Population Division estimates that approximately 72 million people (or 9.5 per cent of the European population) is a first-generation immigrant.3 This figure, to be sure, includes ‘internal’ migrants as well as those coming to Europe from elsewhere. The advanced economies in the north-western part of Europe constituted the first migration catchment areas after the Second World War. Guest workers from Spain and Italy, and later also from the Mediterranean, gravitated to the manufacturing industries in Germany, France, the Benelux, Nordic countries and Switzerland (Martiniello 2006). Furthermore, millions of people from former colonial areas outside Europe moved to their ‘motherland’ of the United Kingdom, France or the Netherlands, and after a while and at a much lower rate also to Spain and Portugal. At that time, Southern and Central European countries (but also countries such as Ireland) were predominantly migrant-sending coun3

Figures refer to the situation in 2010 (

Immigrant Incorporation Studies in Europe


tries, if they were involved in international migration at all. More recently, Ireland, Spain, Portugal, Greece and Italy, as well as a number of countries in Central Europe, have been transformed into transit countries and receiving countries. They now serve as magnets for hundreds of thousands of newcomers from Latin America, Central and Eastern Europe and beyond. In the meantime, refugees and asylum seekers from war zones all over the world have flocked to Europe hoping to find a safe haven. Today, professionals are moving to the centres of Europe’s knowledge economies. These modern-day ‘guest workers’ are known as ‘expats’, as are the students who are enrolling en masse in Europe’s universities and other educational facilities. There is also the category of people who used to be labelled ‘spontaneous guest workers’ but who today are viewed as ‘illegal’ or ‘undocumented migrants’. In addition, people come to Europe seeking adventure, a new lifestyle, friendship or love, and there is a category of Europeans who are simply enjoying the right of free mobility. No country in Europe is unaffected by these migratory flows, although their impact varies from place to place. Migratory movements, in combination with new technologies and increased wealth, have created a Europe that is connected in a myriad of ways to each and every part of the world. Many first-generation and second-generation Moroccans in Belgium or France – including those who are citizens of their country of residence – maintain or construct manystranded linkages with their ‘hometowns’ in the Rif, but feel completely disconnected from other Europeans, for instance, in Nordic region or the Balkans. Today, more than ever before, family ties, economic ties, political ties, cultural ties and the like exist and develop beyond ‘European’ borders. Consequent to immigration, new diversities have been added to and articulated with older diversities, resulting in ever-changing linguistic landscapes, religious landscapes and legal landscapes (as the number of individuals with multiple passports is on the rise). This makes the question what Europe is and who belongs to it all the more urgent. What applies to Europe as a whole – however defined – applies to units at lower scalar levels as well. International migrants arrive in a country, they find a job in a city, and they settle down in a neighbourhood. There they figure out how to get a place in the sun, how to access social and educational resources, and how to become upwardly mobile. They find ways to continue their identity, lifestyle, loyalties and ways of doing things while also adjusting to the host society’s ways and expectations. The host society’s individuals and institutions, for their part, have to figure out how to deal with all of these newcomers, how to maintain social order and social cohesion, and how to secure a smoothly running social, political and economic system in which everyone gets a piece of the pie and all feel connected in some way. As has become clear in Europe, these processes are complex and sensitive. They involve a great deal of negotiation, sur-

Types of migration

Transnational connections



Marco Martiniello and Jan Rath

rounding institutional settings and everyday practices and interactions. A bit of conflict may be involved too, as well as some pain and frustration. Moreover, it is often forgotten that these processes take time. They are further complicated by the fact that neither host societies nor newcomers are fixed entities. Each is subject to profound internal tensions and transformations, and the world around them is in constant change as well, exerting a range of divergent influences on local processes. Globalisation, whether it pertains to political and economic dynamics, to cultural forms or to some other life domain, impacts relations between the host society and newcomers. Nonetheless, experiences from classic countries of immigration, such as the USA and Canada and the Australasia region, teach us the interesting lesson that in the end most newcomers do manage to become part of the mainstream (Alba & Nee 2003). Even the Irish in the USA managed to assimilate! They arrived hungry and penniless and with few resources. They were poor and rowdy. They were seen as a very different type of human being and as lacking civilization. They were Roman Catholics rather than good Protestants. They were loyal to the Pope in Rome – perhaps more loyal to that un-American power than to the US president. Yet, they gradually ceased to be different. Admittedly, it took a lot of bitterness and many generations to accomplish this, but still, assimilation did occur eventually. Their assimilation coincides today with an Irish symbolic ethnicity (Gans 1979) visible, for example, in St Patrick’s Day. The process of immigrant incorporation has many different names. It is described and analysed using terms like ‘inclusion’, ‘adjustment’, ‘absorption’, ‘integration’ and ‘assimilation’. In general, we can say that the concept of ‘assimilation’ is en vogue in North America, whereas in Europe the concept of ‘integration’ is more popular. Both concepts are rather fuzzy and used to refer to several different realities. First of all, they may be understood as a way of describing the state of the art with regard to the position of immigrants and the actual makeup of a society. Second, they may be interpreted as reflecting a general vision of the way government and society should orient itself and thus a preferred end-situation. Third, they may be used to refer to a specific set of policy tools and support mechanisms for accommodating immigrant incorporation. To understand the specificity of European ways of dealing with immigrant incorporation, in contrast to North American ways, it is useful to first take a closer look at the concept of ‘integration’. The notion of integration is almost absent from scholarly and policy discussion in the USA, but it has become absolutely central to debates in Western Europe (Brubaker 2001; Favell 2003; Penninx, Berger & Kraal 2006). In the USA, use of the concept of integration goes back to the black Civil Rights Movement, which invoked it as a goal in opposition to the segregation of schools and public services or as a description of processes of desegregation and ac-

Immigrant Incorporation Studies in Europe


quisition of citizenship rights and equality. The concept of integration in North America is thus historically associated with the plight of AfricanAmericans and the Civil Rights Movement and not with the incorporation of recent immigrants, let alone with government policy to accomplish such an aim. On the American side of the Atlantic, the process of immigrant incorporation is commonly described and analysed in terms of ‘assimilation’. As it is currently used, the concept of ‘assimilation’ or ‘new assimilation’ refers not to the process of absorption into the mainstream but instead to the ‘process of becoming similar or making similar or treating as similar’ (Brubaker 2001: 532; see also Alba & Nee 1997, 2003). In Europe, the concept of integration is de rigueur in political and policy circles, though it is often rejected by the offspring of migrants born on European soil. This is undoubtedly related to social and political concerns about or perhaps even discomfort with international migration and with the presence of migrant and migrant-origin populations in urban Europe. In the USA and other classic countries of immigration, each and every individual can claim a migration history, with the exception of such communities as the Aborigines in Australia, the First Nations in Canada and the Maoris in New Zealand. These countries’ mindset and institutional makeup are therefore geared towards accommodating newcomers. European countries, in contrast, tend to be hesitant about immigration, if not flat out resistant to it. Waves of immigrants have found their way to a multitude of European states. However, the arrival of immigrants is still typically seen as a disturbance of the nation’s daily routines and social relations rather than as a precondition for its continued vitality. Especially in the more advanced European welfare states, governments have stepped in to address these issues and to channel and enhance the process of immigrant integration. This urge to ‘integrate’ the ‘Other’ is related to international migration, the concomitant proliferation of new diversities, the often time-consuming processes of immigrant incorporation and a lack of patience on the part of the host county for this process to be successfully concluded (Vermeulen & Penninx 2000). An important factor is whether newcomers as ethnic or religious minorities demand the right to be different and are allocated space to be so. When they are, such situations are often described as ‘multiculturalism’. The current political mood in Europe is not very favourable towards ‘multiculturalism’, as many fear proliferation of ‘communautarism’ and ‘parallel societies’ (Vertovec & Wessendorf 2010). That fear or discomfort is so strong that it has led leaders of countries that have never officially pursued a multicultural policy – such as Nicolas Sarkozy of France and Angela Merkel of Germany – to make public statements about the purported failure of multiculturalism in their countries (Rath 2011). The critical, or perhaps cynical, discourses notwithstanding, even in these countries there is much of what we label ‘multiculturalism by stealth’ or ‘light multicul-

Immigration in Europe



Integration process’ dynamics

Marco Martiniello and Jan Rath

turalism’: manifestations of ethnic diversity in some institutionalised form that has become commonplace and accepted by a large share of the public (Aytar & Rath 2012). A case in point here is the abundance of ethnic food outlets, which create distinctive but trendy ethnic foodscapes; another is the popularity of world music. This should remind us that policies and public discourse are not to be confused with everyday reality. More importantly, perhaps, it should sensitise us to the fact that processes of integration follow a different pace, take different forms and have different outcomes in different settings. The course of integration may vary from city to city and from country to country, but also from one institutional domain to another. The situation in the labour market is not identical to that in education or in leisure and entertainment. A growing number of scholars in Europe have taken an interest in these issues, and they have produced a large body of literature. This student textbook brings together some of that European scholarship, or more precisely, scholarship that matters to Europe. The first part of this book showcases and discusses a number of theoretical perspectives on immigrant incorporation. In a comprehensive chapter, Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto discuss a range of citizenship theories that are relevant to the study of immigrant integration. Richard Alba and Victor Nee then examine assimilation models. They first critically discuss the ‘old school’ forms of assimilation which assume that newcomers enter a kind of ‘melting pot’ and, by default, dissolve into the mainstream. Then they present a more current perspective on assimilation. John Eade and Paolo Ruspini consider the intricacies of multiculturalism. John Solomos explores various paradigms and perspectives on the interrelationship between race, racism and class. Marlou Schrover concludes this first part of the book with a description of how, by whom and why differences according to gender are made in connection with integration. The second part of the book examines a number of social fields in which the process of immigrant integration takes place. Education, the labour market, business economy, the political system, the health sector, religion, and art and sport are such domains. Martha Montero-Sieburth, Michael Samers, Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath, Irene Bloemraad and Floris Vermeulen, Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin, Valerie Amiraux, Wiebke Sievers and Richard Giulianotti briefly describe the state of the art in these fields, respectively, pointing to central concepts and addressing some of the main theoretical debates. Part three of this book discusses the policy dimensions of these processes. Patrick Ireland examines the relationship between different welfare state regimes and immigrant integration trajectories, while Han Entzinger and Peter Scholten explore national and local integration policies. The book concludes with an epilogue by Marco Martiniello, who reflects on

Immigrant Incorporation Studies in Europe


a more general and normative issue: EU multicultural citizenship as an alternative to immigrant integration policies. The editors selected and approached these authors on the basis of their expertise on these topics. We encouraged contributors to provide profound overviews of the state of the art. What is the situation? What theoretical perspectives have come to the fore in the international debates? What concepts and controversies have emerged? This book, therefore, provides a thorough theoretical introduction to the field of immigrant integration. This does not mean, however, that the editors and authors strived for completeness. Students of immigrant incorporation should be aware that this is merely an introduction, albeit a helpful one, for those seeking to understand the core features of European migration and ethnic studies.

References Alba, R. & V. Nee (1997), ‘Rethinking assimilation theory for a new era of immigration’, International Migration Review 31 (Winter): 826-874. Alba, R. & V. Nee (2003), Remaking the American Mainstream: Assimilation and Contemporary Immigration. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Aytar, V. & J. Rath (2012), Selling Ethnic Neighborhoods. New York: Routledge. Brubaker, R. (2001), ‘The return of assimilation? Changing perspectives on immigration and its sequels in France, Germany, and the United States’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 24 (4): 531-548. Favell, A. (2003), ‘“Integration” and “assimilation”’ in M. Gibney and R. Hansen (eds), Immigration and Asylum: From 1900 to the Present. Santa Barbara: Clio. Gans, H. J. (1979), ‘Symbolic ethnicity: The future of ethnic groups and cultures in America’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 17 (2): 1-20. Martiniello, M. (2006), ‘The new migratory Europe: Towards a proactive immigration policy?’, in G. Parsons and T. Smeeding (eds), Immigration and the Transformation of Europe. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 298-326. Penninx, R., M. Berger & K. Kraal (eds) (2006), The Dynamics of Migration and Settlement in Europe: A State of the Art. IMISCOE Joint Studies. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Rath, J. (2011), ‘Debating multiculturalism: Europe’s Reaction in Context’, Harvard International Review,,0 (accessed 20 October 2011). Vermeulen, H. & R. Penninx (eds) (2000), Immigrant Integration: The Dutch Case. Amsterdam: Het Spinhuis. Vertovec, S. & S. Wessendorf (eds) (2010), The Multiculturalism Backlash: European Discourses, Policies and Practices. London and New York: Routledge.


Marco Martiniello and Jan Rath

About the authors Marco Martiniello is research director at the Belgian National Fund for Scientific Research (FRS-FNRS). He teaches sociology and politics at the University of Liège and is the director of the Center for Ethnic and Migration Studies (CEDEM). Martiniello also teaches at the College of Europe (Natolin, Poland). He is member of the executive board of the IMISCOE Research Network (on International Migration and Social Cohesion in Europe) and president of Research Committee 31, Sociology of Migration (International Sociological Association). He has authored, edited or co-edited numerous articles, book chapters, reports and books on migration, ethnicity, racism, multiculturalism and citizenship within the EU and in Belgium with a transatlantic comparative perspective. These include Citizenship in European Cities (2004), Migration between States and Markets (2004), The Transnational Political Participation of Immigrants: A Transatlantic Perspective (2009), and La Démocratie Multiculturelle (2011). Jan Rath is a professor of urban sociology and associated with the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES) and the Center for Urban Studies at the University of Amsterdam. He is also the European chair of International Metropolis. An anthropologist and urban studies specialist, he is the author, editor or co-editor of numerous articles, book chapters, reports and books on the sociology, politics and economics of post-migration processes. These include Immigrant Businesses: The Economic, Political and Social Environment (2000), Unravelling the Rag Trade: Immigrant Entrepreneurship in Seven World Cities (2002), Immigrant Entrepreneurs: Venturing Abroad in the Age of Globalization (2003), Tourism, Ethnic Diversity, and the City (2007), Ethnic Amsterdam (2009), and Selling Ethnic Neighborhoods (2012).

Part 1 Theoretical Perspectives

2  Citizenship Theories and Migration1 Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

Summary There is a growing belief that we are living in what sociologist and former president of Brazil Fernando Henrique Cardoso refer to as ‘an age of citizenship’. Political scientist Mark Miller and sociologist Stephen Castles have termed this ‘the age of migration’. International migration raises, in particular, questions about inclusion and exclusion in terms of the overall meaning of partial and full membership in political communities. The acquisition of this membership is often a long and arduous process, but the public debates and political conflicts surrounding migrant citizenship are indicative of broader trends in citizenship. This chapter specifies the ways in which citizenship is presumed to be important for immigrant incorporation as well as the implications of migration for citizenship as a whole. The text provides an overview of citizenship theories and discusses the expansion of citizenship through the struggle for rights, the erosion of citizenship in times of neoliberalism, and the extension of citizenship, visible in dual citizenship and EU citizenship. Finally, it takes up debates on local citizenship, civic citizenship and the tension between citizen rights and human rights. Keywords: citizenship, naturalisation, membership, equality, rights

Introduction Citizenship has come to occupy centre stage in the social sciences. It has become a focal point for wide-ranging and varied discussions concerning the future of national welfare states, prospects for democracy in increasingly transnational societies, and the integration of newcomers such as migrants into societies, alongside overall societal integration. The mobility


Thomas Faist would like to thank Margit Fauser, Jürgen Gerdes, Mikael Spång and Eveline Reisenauer for helpful comments and inspiring criticism.



Forms of citizenship

Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

of persons across the borders of national states and the consequences of such mobility for membership, embedded in wider frames of cross-border transactions of goods, services, capital, ideas and fledgling efforts at transnational governance, have become strategic sites for research on the changing boundaries of the political. Migration is an especially salient theme in citizenship, as cross-border mobility raises questions about inclusion and exclusion in terms of citizenship and the overall meaning of partial and full membership in political communities. In fact, many or even most international migrants are – at least initially – not citizens of the country they move to. Not only is the acquisition of membership often a long and arduous process, but the public debate and political conflict that surrounds migrant citizenship is indicative of broader trends in citizenship. Indeed, both citizenship and migration are deemed as important features of our times. There is a growing belief that we are living in what sociologist and former president of Brazil Fernando Henrique Cardoso referred to as ‘an age of citizenship’ (see Kivisto & Faist 2007). Political scientist Mark Miller and sociologist Stephen Castles (2003) term this the ‘age of migration’. However, social and political theorists begin to part company when specifying why citizenship is presumed to be important for immigrant integration. They likewise hold different perspectives on the implications of migration for citizenship as a whole and vice versa, and on the factors they identify as transforming – for better or worse – the significance and character of citizenship in a migratory age. This chapter presents an overview of citizenship theories, using a focus on migration and the incorporation of newcomers to introduce salient issues of membership which are also relevant for any general treatment of citizenship. The proliferation in the literature of adjectives to describe the peculiar features of citizenship today underscores the efforts being made to capture what is deemed to be novel about the present situation. Thus, we find treatments of world citizenship (Heater 2002), global citizenship (Falk 1994), universal citizenship (Young 1989), cosmopolitan citizenship (Linklater 1999), multiple citizenship (Held 1995), post-national citizenship (Soysal 1994), transnational citizenship (Bauböck 1994), nested citizenship (Faist 2001), multi-layered citizenship (Yuval-Davis 2000), multicultural citizenship (Kymlicka 1995), cybercitizenship (Tambini 1997), environmental citizenship (Jelin 2000), feminist citizenship (Lister 1997), gendered citizenship (Seidman 1999), flexible citizenship (Ong 1999), intimate citizenship (Plummer 2003) and protective citizenship (Gilbertson & Singer 2003). Some of these terms, such as dual, post-national and flexible citizenship, have been developed explicitly to capture the nexus of migration and citizenship. Others refer to broader developments, for example, global, environmental and feminist citizenship. All of these forms of citizenship call into question two central assumptions of classical citizenship theory. The first assumption is congruence between a state territory, a people (nation)

Citizenship Theories and Migration


and a state authority (Jellinek 1964 as locus classicus; cf. Sassen’s 2006 adaptation distinguishing between territory, authority and rights). The second assumption is that of the homogeneity of people, mainly along the lines of characteristics such as class and nation. Regarding the latter, extension is warranted of the ingenious formulation by T. H. Marshall (1964), who posited social citizenship as a historical class compromise between market results based on the principle of contract, on one hand, and the principle of status, on the other hand, in a solidarity collective called the ‘nation’. Most important regarding the assumption of relative homogeneity, the new forms of citizenship listed above signal a heightened attention of citizenship theorists to the heterogeneity of people and increasing diversity. Thus, heterogeneous characteristics such as gender, religion, age and others have become more salient socially and politically. In the large – and rapidly growing – body of recent scholarly work on citizenship, mainly from the interrelated fields of sociology, political science, philosophy and cultural studies, we distinguish two major discourses on the topic. The first concerns the expansion of citizenship and the second its erosion; that is, both expansion and erosion within national states. Yet these discourses pay little attention to the twofold extension of citizenship that is also under way, transnationally and globally. Also, comparatively little effort has been devoted to the reformulation of citizenship in light of cross-border processes that have an impact on local citizenship, and to the changes in the socio-moral resources underlying citizenship, that is, reciprocity and solidarity, as in the concept of civic citizenship. Finally, in all of its forms except global, citizenship acts as a social closure towards those who do not belong to the predefined body politic. What is at stake is not simply the emergence of new forms of citizenship, such as transnational citizenship or global citizenship, but the internal globalisation of existing forms of citizenship, such as the transformation of national citizenship. Therefore, it is necessary to explore the limits of the concept of citizenship as a means of social and political inclusion.

Towards a definition of citizenship Before showing how migration poses a challenge to citizenship, a more general discussion of the term is in order. Citizenship is a contested and a normative concept (Walzer 1989). Today it usually refers to full membership in a national state. There are no authoritative definitions. According to the Aristotelian tradition, citizenship constitutes an expression of full membership of persons in a political community, eventually aiming towards equal political liberty, irrespective of whether the citizens are governing or are governed (Aristotle 1962: III, 1274b32-1275b21). Overall, citizenship can be usefully differentiated into a legal concept – legal



Conceptual definition

Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

citizenship or ‘nationality’ (e.g., nacionalidad, nationalité, Staatsangehörigkeit) – and a political concept. Citizenship as a legal concept means full membership in a state and the corresponding tie to state law and subjection to state power. The interstate function of nationality is to define a people within a clearly delineated territory and to protect the citizens of a state against the outside, at times hostile, world. The intrastate function of nationality is to define the rights and duties of members. According to the principle of domaine reservée – exclusive competence – each state decides within the limits of self-determination on the criteria required for access to its citizenship. One general condition for membership is that nationals have some kind of close ties to the respective state, a ‘genuine link’ (Faist 2007). In contrast, citizenship viewed as a contested political concept concerns the relationship between the state and democracy: ‘Without a state, there can be no citizenship; without citizenship, there can be no democracy’ (Linz & Stepan 1996: 28). In essence, citizenship builds on collective selfdetermination, that is, democracy, essentially comprising three mutually qualifying dimensions: (i) the legally guaranteed status of equal political freedom and democratic self-determination; (ii) equal rights and obligations of all full members; and (iii) affiliation to a political community. These three dimensions are developed below. Democracy


The first basic dimension is the principle of democratic legitimation regarding the acceptance of rule and the process of rule-making. Flowing from this are citizenship practices, namely, the ways in which the relations between citizens and the political community as a whole unfold over time, and more specifically, how citizens negotiate and shape their citizenship. Thus, citizenship means above all the principle of unity of both those governing and those being governed (Rousseau 1966: 76), whatever forms the democratic procedures of each state may take in detail. Ideally, citizens endowed with equal political liberty obey the laws in which they have participated in the creation and the validity of which they thus consent to. Without democratic procedures guiding citizens’ political self-determination, citizenship would mean little more than members of political communities being subjects of a sovereign. Rights and duties The second basic dimension of citizenship refers to the principle of rule of law regarding a guaranteed right to citizenship and to rights associated with citizenship, as well as welfare state intervention in the form of policies to underpin a modicum of living. In general, citizens’ rights fall into vari-

Citizenship Theories and Migration


ous realms: civil or negative rights to liberty, such as the right to a fair court proceeding; political rights to participation such as the right to vote and to associate; and social rights, including the right to social benefits in case of sickness, unemployment and old age and the right to education (Marshall 1964). The duties corresponding to citizens’ entitlements are the duty to serve in the armed forces in order to protect state sovereignty against exterior threats, alongside the duty to pay taxes, to acknowledge the rights and liberties of other citizens and to accept democratically legitimated decisions of majorities.


Collective affiliation The third basic dimension of citizenship implies affiliation to a political community, often understood as the ‘nation’ in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Citizenship rests on an affinity of citizens with certain political communities, implying the partial identification with and thus loyalty to a self-governing collective (cf. Weber 1980: 242-244). Such collectives claim to establish a balance between the individual and common interests, on the one hand, and rights and responsibilities within the political community, on the other. Affiliation with a collective, whether it be a nation or other entity, expressed as a set of relatively continuous, social and symbolic ties of citizens otherwise anonymous to each other, is linked to the status dimension of citizenship, because there exist reciprocal obligations of members in a political community, akin to a social contract.

Sense of belonging

The three dimensions together The three dimensions are intricately connected. There is a double coding of citizenship (cf. Habermas 1998): access to legally guaranteed status and rights in a democracy (the first and second dimension) usually implies belonging to a politically defined community (the third dimension). Importantly, citizenship rests not only on the status of state–citizen ties but also on ties among citizens. Citizenship forms a continuing series of institutionalised ties among citizens (Tilly 1996). Political analyses tend to focus on the aspect of status and to ignore the aspect of social ties. In particular, citizenship connotes the institutionalisation of specific reciprocity and diffuse solidarity of members in a political community – again, like a social contract (Dahrendorf 1988: 116). Specific reciprocity means that one’s partners may be viewed as a group (e.g., nation) rather than as particular actors. It involves conforming to generally accepted standards of behaviour. Diffuse solidarity relates to empathy towards others and also pertains to larger social formations in which participants and members largely lack face-to-face contact. Quite a few social rights and corresponding policies, especially those that have a redistributive effect, require specific reciprocal

Grouping individuals


Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

ties among citizens, such as the so-called ‘generations agreement’ implicit in pension schemes based on a younger generation paying for the one that has already retired, in the expectation that the next generation will do the same. A basis in diffuse solidarity may even be needed for certain social rights and policies, such as basic minimum income schemes financed by general tax revenues. Thus, three main trends can be identified as contributing to shape citizenship over the past century. These are expansion, via the continual inclusion of new groups within (national) states; erosion, via the decreasing political participation of members/citizens in the public sphere; and extension, via the partial separation of the triad of state authority, state population and state territory and the overall transnationalisation of social processes.

The expansion of citizenship: From exclusion to inclusion and the struggle for rights

Inclusion and exclusion

Expansion theorists view citizenship as vibrant and susceptible to reinvention in ways appropriate to the exigencies of contemporary challenges. There are actually two distinct, albeit sometimes interconnected, discourses. One account sees the expansion of citizenship in terms of the progressive inclusion of heretofore marginalised and excluded groups. For example, the evolutionary functionalism of Talcott Parsons (1971) suggests that a growing capacity and societal interest in inclusivity is one of the main trends shaping modern societies. Such a perspective views citizenship as a particularly significant mode of identity and solidarity in pluralist societies. Particular attention is paid to various spheres of heterogeneity, such as ethnicity, race, gender, migration status and experience. One aspect concerns citizenship acquisition, while another pertains to the extension of citizen rights to hitherto excluded groups, including migrants. The acquisition of citizenship is constituted by criteria relating to one’s country of birth. The two most widespread principles for children born in a state are jus sanguinis and jus soli. The former is the principle of intergenerational transmission existing in virtually all countries, while the latter is the principle of territoriality, which is more inclusive of children of newcomers. Other criteria relating to newcomers could be the length of stay in the country of naturalisation, language competence, proof of civic literacy, demonstration of material resources and marketable skills. Regarding these criteria, alongside regulations for acquisition of legal citizenship by birth or naturalisation, there has been a European trend towards convergence, for example, the spreading of the principle of jus soli and the convergence of explicit rules, such as requiring knowledge of the official language of the country of naturalisation, as a prerequisite for acquiring citizenship (cf. Joppke 1999). Empirical studies have interpreted such measurable trends

Citizenship Theories and Migration


as a sign of increasing inclusiveness (Waldrauch 2001). From the viewpoint of normative political theory much of the impetus towards greater inclusion of migrants and their offspring can be derived from the democratic principle of congruence between the resident population and the populace; that is, residents subject to laws should have a say in the formation of those laws. This is a direct outflow of the first dimension of citizenship, which affirms equal political freedom. Nonetheless, questions remain even in this discourse; for example, ‘Should immigrants show some proof that they have become incorporated socially or culturally before being allowed to naturalise and thus have access to full rights?’ Or does full citizenship instead represent a beginning of the integration process, a sort of necessary prerequisite for full incorporation? The second aspect pertains to the extension of citizen rights to hitherto excluded groups. It relates to some migrant groups or national minorities being characterised by their race or ethnicity. The focus here is not on newcomers but on full citizens who have been deprived of acquiring full rights or exercising them. Inclusion by extending universal rights (e.g., voting rights for all, such as in the American Civil Rights Movement) or granting specific rights (e.g., representation rights for religious or ethnic minorities) is often justified on the basis of discrimination in the past or present (e.g., affirmative action policies). Or measures may be taken to ensure that minority members can draw upon their cultural heritage. In states with a high degree of minority rights or multicultural rights, characteristics such as gender, ethnicity and race acquire more important meaning in shaping an understanding of who is to be granted full membership in the body politic. Nonetheless, it is highly contested whether, to what degree and for which category, citizens’ cultural or even group-differentiated rights should be a constitutive part of citizenship (Young 1989). Critics charge that cultural rights could form the basis of new divisions among citizens, contradicting the notion of equal democratic citizenship. Multicultural rights could be used to portray minorities as culturally different or to induce the (welfare) state to redistribute from the majority to such minorities. Similar charges have emerged in general debates on immigration in Europe, Australia and North America. Much of the discussion has been connected to collective identifications, which is our third dimension of citizenship. In citizenship theory, two debates have focused on this issue. The first debate concerns the claim that individual and group rights of minorities are a major basis for political inclusion in multicultural societies (Kymlicka & Norman 2000). Recently, the idea of diversity has, depending on the viewpoint taken, replaced or enriched the discourse on multiculturalism. This perspective goes beyond cultural characteristics to include social class and disability. Nevertheless, it is of utmost relevance for migrant incorporation as well, because it shifts the basic question from ‘how can migrants be socially integrated into the body politic?’ to ‘how can mainstream or majority

Integration or citizenship first?

Dealing with diversities


Citizenship as a tool

Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

organisations adjust to the (putatively) growing diversity of contemporary society?’ (Faist 2009a). The second debate is associated with the question of how far citizenship and attendant national identifications can be extended beyond their traditional association with an exclusive national community to several national communities, or even to global or cosmopolitan communities (Bosniak 2002). Thus, to what extent is citizenship bound to national states? The question of whether it can also be tied to sub-state (e.g., regional, local, city) and supranational entities (e.g., of the EU) is fiercely disputed. A competing account to the gradual, onward march of inclusion stresses the struggles of marginalised groups to gain admission to the public sphere as equals possessing all of the rights of citizens. This view is especially evident among social movement scholars. Be it a focus on the women’s movement or migrants’ struggles, the main thrust of this approach tends to reflect the dictum, ‘Rights must be taken!’ Implicitly set in the conflict theoretical approach by John Rex (1982), theoretical and empirical work in this vein has looked at forms of discrimination, exploitation and social closure in markets but also in polities. It emphasises conflicts between groups instead of competition between individuals, and it documents how resistance challenges both social structures and ideas upholding social inequality along lines other than but intricately connected to social class (e.g., Katznelson 1973). One interesting question concerns the material effects of the extension of citizenship to immigrants. Citizenship and the chances for its acquisition may have very tangible effects on the life chances of migrants, and this outcome sheds light on the relationship between citizenship acquisition and migrant incorporation. The question is whether citizenship could be used as an instrument to promote the integration of immigrants or whether it functions or should function as a reward for well-performing migrants. Recent findings on this issue regarding OECD countries (Liebig 2011: 48-49) suggest that the first position has more empirical validity than the second one. To start with, the data indicate that those migrants who have acquired the immigration country citizenship tend to show more favourable labour market outcomes. Predictably, the observed better outcomes are partly driven by the fact that there is some positive selection of migrants into citizenship. For example, immigrants who take up the immigration state citizenship are likely to be relatively highly educated and to have higher labour market positions already before naturalisation. The crucial question then is whether having immigration country citizenship can, by itself, have a beneficial effect on migrants’ labour market outcomes. Indeed, it does seem to enhance not only the general likelihood of finding work, but also its quality and wage level, and immigration country citizenship leads to a better representation of immigrants in the public sector. What is more, the effects appear to be strongest for the most disadvantaged immigrants in the labour market.

Citizenship Theories and Migration


The erosion of citizenship: Naturalisation, social cohesion and neoliberalism As to the erosion theorists, again two different, though sometimes interconnected, concerns have been voiced about what has been interpreted as a decline in the efficacy and salience of citizenship. One variant concerns what is perceived as the steady decline in involvement in public life by ordinary people. This particular topic has been a major worry to those interested in the fate of the public sphere or civil society in various ways from different perspectives, as attested by the works of Benjamin Barber, Robert Bellah, Amitai Etzioni and Robert Putnam (Kivisto & Faist 2007: Chapter 4). Regarding immigrants, one key issue is the conditions and criteria of naturalisation. The fear in this vein is the ‘devaluation’ of citizenship if immigrants can acquire it too easily (Schuck & Smith 1985). Other frequently voiced concerns relate to the instrumental acquisition of citizenship. For example, there is some evidence that in countries with more restrictive migration policies there is a higher incentive to acquire citizenship. The reverse situation is found, for example, among those who have citizenship of one EU member state: they have little incentive to strive for the acquisition of citizenship of another EU state (cf. German Federal Office for Migration 2012: 15). The second variant of erosion concerns the lively debate currently under way to address the assault on social citizenship brought about by the rise of neoliberal political regimes since the 1970s. Appropriately, this debate is usually framed in terms of T. H. Marshall’s (1964) paradigm of the evolution of citizenship linked to the rise and expansion of the modern welfare state. The expansion of citizenship is not simply a process of expanding or contracting individual rights, but of changing the relation between individual rights and a collective dimension. This is why the development of citizenship is not congruent with the neoliberal approach foregrounding individual (property) rights, but rather, in Marshall’s insightful formulation, constitutes a status, based on a collective understanding, to counter inequitable results produced by market forces. In short, citizenship may constitute a status mechanism for ameliorating class inequalities. Yet it is noteworthy that the impact of economic restructuring on migrant citizenship is not a major issue in the current discussions and theory on migrant citizenship. This stands in stark contrast to the debates on ‘race and class’ in the 1970s and 1980s. Instead, concerns about social cohesion and social integration through the lens of culture dominate the academic and public policy agenda. In a detour, this concern has been taken up by those looking again at how immigrants themselves organise to accumulate and reproduce social capital in the political realm, that is, through immigrant organisations and associated politics (e.g., Fennema & Tillie 2001).

Value and incentives

Neoliberalism, market and inequality


Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

Critics of multicultural citizenship have referred to de-solidarisation of citizens in welfare states as a consequence of multicultural citizenship. Still others argue that multiculturalism policies fuel cultural conflict and thereby increase opposition to immigrant rights by encouraging identity politics on the part of the majority groups (Sniderman & Hagendoorn 2007 on the Netherlands). By contrast, defenders of multiculturalism maintain that multiculturalism policies have led to increased equalities (Banting & Kymlicka 2006). Given the sweeping claims advanced by both critics and defenders of multicultural citizenship, it is indeed astonishing that the bulk of this work draws on a wealth of normative theory, in sharp contrast to the poverty of empirical research on multiculturalism.

The extension of citizenship: Multiple citizenship as dual and supranational citizenship

Multiple entities

Theories of expansion and erosion have both frequently presupposed that the locus of citizenship is the national state. This assumption has been increasingly challenged by scholars, who raise questions about what they claim to be erosion of the efficacy of the national state or, in more sophisticated terms, its transformation, while simultaneously pondering whether various trans-state entities such as the United Nations or, at a more regional level, the EU, might be capable of developing notions of citizenship that, in effect, burst the boundaries of the national state (Jacobson 1996). In part, the argument draws a parallel between the pre-modern and the modern loci of citizenship. In the former, it was the city-state, while in the latter it became the national state. The assumption underpinning this argument is that, as we enter what some see as late or advanced modernity (Giddens 1990) and others as postmodernity (Harvey 1989), a similar shift occurs in the locus of citizenship regimes. Empirical observations indicate that citizenship is becoming increasingly unbundled, in that identity, political participation rights and social benefits that were once grouped tightly together under the rubric of national citizenship are, in a number of circumstances, today being disaggregated and assembled in new ways, thus ‘jumping tracks’. Today, there is nothing unusual about several partially overlapping, partially competing governance structures with diverging membership criteria existing within a single territory. The voting rights of certain non-citizen residents in some municipal elections in Europe is an example. Some see in this disaggregation a sign of the end of democracy in the name of transnational capital, labour and consumerism. Others suggest that one can also locate in such a disaggregation a site for a pluralist cosmopolitan federalism of the sort that Immanuel Kant advocated (Benhabib 2004).

Citizenship Theories and Migration


Underlying these considerations is the fundamental theoretical problem of whether citizenship can fruitfully be conceptualised beyond the national state, or whether citizenship – as, for example, Bryan Turner (1993) would have it – cannot be transnationalised. If the latter is the case, there is also a danger of conceptual stretching. A third view rejects both positions and argues that the unbundling of rights, territories and authorities does not lead to a juxtaposition of old, national forms with new, supranational or even global forms of citizenship because supranational and global processes mainly work through a reconfigured national state (Sassen 2006). Basically, there are two forms of citizenship reaching beyond and below the national state. The first is overlapping, best visualized in citizenship as circles which overlap each other. Dual or multiple citizenship in national states is a prominent example. The second form is nested, consisting of concentric circles: a person may be a citizen of Lisbon, Portugal and the EU. This latter form relates to city level or local citizenship. Dual citizenship raises questions similar to those brought up by the expansion of citizenship more generally. Toleration of dual citizenship in immigration countries is usually legitimated by positing that legal equality should be a prerequisite for substantive citizenship, that is, full participation in economic, political and cultural life in the place of residence. Again, it is the congruence of the resident population and populace which is at the heart of the matter. Instrumentally, the claim that legal equality should be a prerequisite for citizenship hinges on the observation that those states tolerating dual citizenship have, ceteris paribus, proportionally more immigrants who have been naturalised. In addition, citizenship as a human right comes into play. In international law, for example, citizenship has come to be viewed increasingly as a human right, as in the case of stateless persons (Chan 1991). Gender equality as a human right found entry into international law in the Convention on Nationality for Married Women in 1957, and later into the law of national states. According to this body of law, women no longer have to give up their legal citizenship when marrying a spouse of another nationality. In a further step, taken by a Convention of the Council of Europe (1993), children from so-called bi-national marriages have dual or multiple citizenships. Countries with significant shares of emigrants, that is, emigration countries, have subsequently also adapted their citizenship laws, verging towards more tolerance of dual citizenships among their citizens abroad. However, in such cases the above-mentioned factors have played less of a role than the instrumental concerns of maintaining and re-forging ties to (former) citizens abroad (e.g., Górny et al. 2007). The increasing toleration of dual citizenship as membership around the globe (Faist & Gerdes 2008) is reflective of multiple belonging. In effect, its spread has helped to advance thinking about overcoming dichotomies in concepts of migrant incorporation. Insertion in the country of settlement

Overlapping and nested


Voting right

Allowing permanent residency

Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

is not necessarily accompanied by a dismantling of ties to countries of origin. Affiliation to transnationally connected families, religious communities and entrepreneurs is thus not an anomaly of incorporation processes but one of the many pathways to incorporation used by migrants. Dual citizenship has different implications in different political systems, depending their more unitary or more federal designs. Dual citizenship derives mainly from the acquisition of citizenship at birth (from parents with different nationalities or from the combination of jus sanguinis transmission by the state of origin and jus soli acquisition in the state of residence). Moreover, dual nationality increasingly stems from naturalisation without renunciation of a previously acquired legal citizenship. While dual citizenship may raise certain problems for the individuals and states concerned, it does not obviously violate democratic principles. One objection is that dual citizenship would violate equality of representation by giving one person two votes. However, even assuming that they can also vote by absentee ballot in a country where they do not presently live, dual citizens still have one vote only in each election. These separate votes are never aggregated in the process of electing a representative or in a referendum. Dual citizens have a stake in two different states, but their votes do not count twice in any decision. This is different in federal systems (e.g., those of the USA and Germany) or proto-federal systems (such as the EU). If a person who is a resident of both Germany and France were enfranchised in both countries for elections to the European Parliament, this would mean that their vote would be counted twice in determining the representation of these countries (or, more precisely, of districts within these countries) in the European Parliament. These considerations, in principle, also apply to other forms of multiple citizenships. Yet dual citizenship is by no means the only form of multiple citizenships. At the sub-state level, there are forms of local citizenship, and at the supra-state level, there are incarnations such as EU citizenship. The empirical observation that social and political citizenship do not coincide has led to a wider and farther-reaching debate on the nature of contemporary citizenship. The point of departure is that permanent residents may have access to virtually all social rights, yet be barred from the right to vote because they are not de jure citizens, that is, citizens in the full legal sense (Faist 1995). One branch of the discussion concerns the concept of post-national citizenship, which is particularly salient for the EU and national states. This concept emphasises the increasing relevance of genuinely inter-state and supra-state policies and rights. In general, postnationalists claim that human rights have grown closer to citizens’ rights. In their view, liberal-democratic states have come to increasingly respect the human rights of persons, irrespective of their citizenship (Soysal 1994). Interstate human rights discourses and supra-state institutions such as the EU have led states to grant rights, including virtually all civil and social

Citizenship Theories and Migration


rights, to certain groups which thereby do not become citizens (yet) but ‘denizens’, or immigrants holding permanent residence status. To some extent, the emergence of denizenship counteracts one of the main trends of national state citizenship, which privileged the binary opposition of ‘citizen’ versus ‘alien’, in contrast to the complex relationships between individuals and communities in ancien régime societies (Fahrmeir 2007). The category of denizens includes those who are permanent residents in the member states of the EU while also holding citizenship of a non-EU country, that is, citizens of third states (extracommunitari). Within the EU, supra-state institutions such as the European Court of Justice (ECJ) have developed common rights for all residents. For this reason, today there are few differences in social rights for denizens and citizens of EU member states. Nevertheless, writers in the post-national vein have little to say about citizens, as the focus is on the divergence between rights and identity, which are the second and third dimensions of citizenship. They are mainly concerned with the closing gap of rights between denizens and citizens (Jacobson 1995), and completely disregard the very foundation and first dimension of citizenship, equal political liberty. Moreover, it is certainly true that basic human and civil rights have become enshrined on a supra-state level in the EU. But this is obviously not as true for political rights and not at all true for social rights. A post-nationalist perspective neglects the double coding of citizenship. It disregards, for example, that morally demanding social rights, such as those involving redistribution of funds, require support by strong social and symbolic ties of specific reciprocity and diffuse solidarity. Such ties are usually limited to collectives that are much narrower than the category ‘European people’ as a whole. For example, generational reciprocity in pension systems does not reach from Finland to Portugal. This is not to say that the EU has had no impact on social rights. In the realm of national health services, for example, EU rules condition the options available to national welfare states. Yet, the EU has implemented new rights only in limited areas, such as the rights of mobile citizens of EU member states, those in the sphere of gender equality and those regarding health and occupational safety. The post-national perspective views the emergence of rights in-between citizen rights and human rights, such as denizenship, already as a sign that human rights of personhood have become more important than citizen rights for certain categories of persons such as migrants. In social science parlance, denizenship refers to permanent residents with civil and social rights almost equivalent to those of citizens (Hammar 1990). Denizenship implies that, increasingly, aliens acquire rights that were formerly the prerogative of citizens. However, the basis of denizenship is not only human rights but also participation in functionally differentiated systems of modern society, such as participation in labour markets and thus social security. Also, one needs to discard the implausible idea that an efficient pro-

European and supranational

Equal opportunities


European citizenship

Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

tection of human rights is located in global discourses. Therefore, one can circumvent the questionable assumptions of the post-national perspective and go a step further. Indeed, we need to ask whether citizenship can be reconceptualised supranationally – but not just as a replication of national state citizenship. The concept of nested citizenship is an alternative to a post-national analysis of supranational citizenship (Faist 2001). Nested membership allows that membership in the EU has multiple sites and that there is an interactive system of politics, policies and rights between the sub-state, state, inter-state and supra-state levels. The web of governance networks allows for enshrining (currently a few) new rights at the supra-state level, interconnecting them with old ones, and – above all – re-adapting rights and institutions in existing member states. In the near future, the EU will probably not become a federal political system like those found in its member states. Therefore, we cannot speak of EU citizenship as full-fledged federal citizenship. But what has evolved in the EU is an extraordinarily intricate network of overlapping authorities and attendant rights. The specific characteristics of nested citizenship are as follows. First, nested membership implies multiple levels. The political actors − including sovereign member states, the EU Commission, the Council of Ministers, lobby groups and citizens’ associations − are involved in activities at different levels. Second, nested citizenship is a form of federative membership. There is not a simple coexistence of different levels. EU citizenship as a whole is sited in various governance levels. An important consequence is that nested citizenship is not smoothly evolving into a truly federal citizenship. The sovereignty of member states in granting citizenship at the state level has far-reaching implications for the slow evolution of a more coherent EU citizenship, and the resistance of member states to it. Take the example of free movement. Argentinians with Spanish or Italian ancestry might have reclaimed the citizenship of their ancestors and moved to the EU – but not necessarily to their country of citizenship within the EU. Or look at Hungary extending citizenship to co-ethnics in Serbia, or the ease with which Moldavians seem to have access to Romanian citizenship and therefore citizenship in the EU and the associated mobility rights. In all these cases EU member states other than the ones mentioned could object. This state of affairs constitutes one of the factors slowing the harmonisation of citizenship laws and even the unification of citizenship within the EU. The ability of member states to regulate admission to state citizenship stands in stark contrast to their growing inability to define who is considered a ‘worker’ and thus able to cross borders freely and engage in economic activities. Access to member state citizenship is an instrument wielded by the now semi-sovereign states to fend off continued encroachment of EU case law upon access to their labour markets. Member states try to offset their sovereignty losses concerning the free movement of labour by

Citizenship Theories and Migration


protecting their exclusive right to naturalisation. The third characteristic of nested citizenship is that it cannot be thought of as membership guided by a coherent or even centralised political authority. As opposed to citizenship in federal political systems, such as the Federal Republic of Germany (not to speak of unitary systems), the EU as the highest level should not be understood as the primary centre of political authority standing above the sub-state systems. The multi-tiered governance network of the EU is better understood as a loose federal system.

Reformulations of citizenship: The examples of local and quasicitizenship The rise of modern (national) statehood signifies a subordination of locality in general and the city in particular to the nation as the only sovereign political community (Isin & Wood 1999). Local citizenship has thus been subjugated to national citizenship. This is not self-evident, as citizenship emerged in the Mediterranean city-states of Athens and Rome, and was reinvented in the Renaissance city republics. The modern national incarnation arose in the urban revolutions that swept across Europe from 1789 to 1848. In the age of transnationalisation and even globalisation, which has not undermined national states in principle but has given other levels of political organisation new opportunities (see, e.g., Held et al. 1999), the question is whether we see a new form of local citizenship for the twenty-first century that may differ from the nineteenth- and twentiethcentury models of national membership. The potential significance of urban citizenship for cosmopolitan democracy is not that it would provide an alternative basis to territorial federation, but that it could be the locus of new forms of identifications. Culturally diverse localities could foster new collective identifications which do not neatly correspond to national narratives of cultural homogeneity (Bauböck 2003). Membership in city locales would not necessarily be congruent with full national membership, as membership in cities could include irregular migrants, permanent residents and citizens alike. There has been a tendency across Europe to include permanent residents in the populace for local elections. Whether local or urban citizenship could also provide an alternative model of membership that could eventually help to overcome some of the exclusionary features of national citizenship or even be the harbinger for cosmopolitanism is open for debate. Nonetheless, local citizenship raises the question of how citizenship can be democratised ‘from below’. Analyses of both supranational and local citizenship are particularly salient for understanding membership in emerging polities because one may dissect the resources necessary for citizens to trust each other. Both the expansion and erosion camps talk about highly demanding norms, name-

Local level



Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

ly, trust among citizens, specific reciprocity and diffuse solidarity, as the necessary foundations of citizenship in national states. One could even go so far as to say that these are ‘socio-moral resources’ (Offe & Preuß 1991), which enable civil society to consent on rights and obligations. This means a fusion of citizenship’s second dimension – rights and obligations – and third dimension – collective identifications. Usually, these observations apply to national forms of citizenship. The interesting question is whether citizenship also requires at the local and supranational levels thick forms of reciprocity and solidarity, or whether thinner forms could also form a basis for citizens respecting each other’s equal political freedom – the very first dimension and basis of citizenship. In order to capture forms of membership in-between alienship and full citizenship in the EU, a number of concepts have been used, such as ‘denizenship’, ‘civic citizenship’ and ‘quasi-citizenship’. These all denote a sort of long-term residence status. The earliest effort was Hammar’s revival of denizenship as a distinct status which captures in-between-ness at the national level. Later, the term ‘quasi-citizenship’ was coined to denote an enhanced version of denizenship ‘that entails almost identical rights as those enjoyed by resident nationals, including voting rights at some level (local or national) or access to public office, as well as full protection from expulsion’ (Bauböck et al. 2006: 29). Nonetheless, there has been no seminal trend of liberalisation: Generally, after 2000 in the majority of the Member States, either access to the permanent residence status became more difficult with the introduction of new conditions and practical barriers, or new grounds for losing the status were introduced (Groenendijk 2006: 405).

Civic citizenship, a concept pushed by the EU in the early 2000s, denoted a similar conceptual effort as quasi-citizenship. It emerged from the European Commission’s communications on a Community immigration policy. Similar to denizenship, it includes all those who are permanent residents and is meant to apply to all legally-resident extracommunitari who have put down roots in EU member states. As long-term residents, they enjoy comparable access to employment, education, welfare benefits, healthcare and housing. In several EU member states, migrant residents are allowed to participate in local elections by voting and by standing as candidates. In sum, the main function of these three concepts was or has been to deliberate on how to increase solidarity, reciprocity and a sense of affiliation to a polity among migrants and citizens. However, given recent restrictions in access to permanent residence status in many European countries, it is not clear whether objectively – as measured by social scientists – or subjectively – as perceived by migrants themselves – this status constitutes a step toward full citizenship by way of naturalisation or a form of second-

Citizenship Theories and Migration


class citizenship. Moreover, the legal status of permanent residence raises two crucial questions concerning the comparison of permanent residents (denizens, quasi-citizens) with EU citizenship and national citizenship. First, how can the differences in rights between permanent residents and EU citizens be justified? For example, EU citizens are allowed to vote in another country in local (and EU) elections immediately after taking up residence while third-country nationals have to wait several years or may be denied local voting rights. Second, what about differences in rights between permanent residents and national citizens? For example, national citizens are allowed, in principle, to move freely between the member states of the EU. In contrast, permanent residents who are extracommunitari do not enjoy this privilege.

Permanent residence and citizenship

The limits of citizenship: The friction between citizen rights and human rights Regardless of its transnational or local extensions, citizenship in a mobile world is not a concept that could adjudicate between the principles of universal or global justice and human rights, on the one hand, and justice within a bounded political community such as a national state, on the other. Justice within the latter requires some sort of social closure and exclusion of outsiders. This becomes obvious in the case of irregular migrants or refugees. In short, citizenship presents two faces. Within a political community it stands for inclusion and universalism, but to outsiders, citizenship means exclusion. There is a fundamental tension between state control and efficiency in guarding citizen rights and the claims of individuals who may not be (full) members. Both converge in the issue of legitimation of democratic states. Not only is the protection of citizen rights in bounded welfare states clearly connected to efficient state policies, the same holds true for protection of migrant rights – but regarding human rights and not citizen rights. Hence, we find the argument that since the sovereign national state is the main enforcer of universal human rights, individuals enjoy these rights not by virtue of their humanity but by virtue of their (full) membership in a national state (Arendt 1951: 279). Ultimately, this means that stateless persons are without protection. While the protection of stateless persons has been improved over the past decades, the underlying problem has remained. It was recently taken up again and applied to migrants and asylum seekers, in particular, in form of the ‘paradox of democratic legitimacy’, which grounds legitimacy in liberal democracies in both universal human rights and particular citizen rights: ‘There is not only a tension, but often an outright contradiction, between human rights declarations and states’ sovereign claims to control their borders as well as to monitor the quality and quantity of admittees’ (Benhabib 2004: 2). As the first dimen-

Protecting citizens or human beings


Trivial and marginalised

Thomas Faist and Peter Kivisto

sion of citizenship suggests, citizens’ rights are not built upon the idea of state sovereignty but based on equal political rights, which are contingent upon (full) membership in a (national) state and on human rights, which are universal and equal but not tied to the main enforcer of rights, that is, the sovereign state. Historically, the fundamental human rights have been listed as ‘the rights to life, liberty, and property’ (Locke 1998), and new ones have been added, at least in public understanding and international human right law, such as the freedom from arbitrary arrest and detention. Human rights are much thinner than citizen rights, although the historical origins of both types are very similar. Both traditions can be traced to civil rights in the eighteenth century, as voiced in the US and French revolutions. In both contexts, rights were seen as civil rights, and were not yet exclusive to citizens only, albeit other forms of exclusion prevailed such as that related to slavery and gender. Over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, citizen rights gained equal footing with political rights as a way of inclusion, while human rights came to mean basic protection against arbitrariness. This crucial difference is visible in social rights. Citizen rights have become tied to social citizenship. While heavily contested, social citizenship means that market participation and principles of capitalism should be balanced by status rights to a modicum of livelihood. Yet, human rights in such a context only mean a very basic safety net within liberal-democratic welfare states and basically none outside. Thus, social and economic rights as stipulated in international human rights conventions are rather thin. This is why we often see that the social rights of the disabled and other vulnerable categories of persons are the first to be cut when welfare states circumscribe access to services and entitlements. Another example is unreasonable demands placed upon vulnerable groups, such as workfare programmes. This practice of limiting citizen rights runs counter to human rights stipulations and suggests that liberal democracies are prone to adopt illiberal social policies (King 1999). Human rights are particularly important for categories such as asylum seekers and illegal migrants. Indeed, there are human rights principles built into the legislation of many liberal-democratic immigration countries, such as barriers to discrimination which permanently bar long-term residents from citizenship acquisition, or which deny full membership on the basis of ascriptive features such as gender, ethnicity and race. However, human rights norms are much weaker when it comes to admission, which is a precondition for residence and later citizenship. For example, there is no human right to first admission of asylum seekers. Quite to the contrary, virtually all available empirical evidence points in the opposite direction. Most receiving states have tightened their admission rules over the past three decades and made it much harder for asylum seekers to make any claims, be it through safe third-country rules, visa requirements, conditioning development aid upon successful cooperation in migration control

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or carrier sanctions for transportation companies – to name only a few of the most obvious instruments. Next to asylum seekers, the clash of human rights and citizen rights is visible in the case of illegal migrants. In principle, illegality undermines the effectiveness of immigration policies and the maintenance of established standards in labour markets and working conditions, threatens the legitimacy and financing of social insurance systems, and challenges the established system of collective bargaining between unions and employer associations. Nevertheless, democratic national states, which are essentially legitimised by respecting human rights, cannot completely ignore the individual claims of illegal immigrants to procedures according to rule of law, such as medical treatment in emergency cases and basic education for children. In a world of ever larger mobility not only of capital and goods but also of people, one may look back in time to see how political communities have dealt with such challenges. However, liberal states in Europe and elsewhere are not only democratic states – they are also welfare states. Historically, welfare states in the current OECD have their origins in elite responses to the vagrant poor in Europe and, above all, to socialist and union challenges. One may call for ‘European solutions’ to border-crossing issues such as transnational migration. But the admission-membership dilemma of universal justice versus social justice in welfare systems is not solved by creating ever larger collectivities dealing with social risks. As suggested by the process of incipient Europeanisation of national migration policies and attempts at the collectivisation of social policy and immigration policy at the EU level, the tension has only been replicated at a higher level of aggregation, or more precisely, partly transferred to a multilevel governance system. All empirical evidence on external and internal border control in Europe suggests that Europeanisation has implied higher levels of control and increased efforts at externalisation of control by means of buffer zones at the European periphery (Faist & Kivisto 2007). All of this leads to the preliminary conclusion that national citizenship as a normative-political concept is not an apt approach for understanding the larger issues going beyond naturalisation and political inclusion, involving both admission and social exclusion. Instead, when viewed from a global perspective, citizenship in Western liberal democracies constitutes one of the mechanisms reproducing social inequality on a global scale (Shachar 2003). The single most important predictor of a person’s life chances is the country of birth. For example, taking income equality or inequality as a measure of life chances, inter-country differences in income per capita are higher than intra-country differences (Faist 2009b). More­ over, a human rights perspective, while potentially being more inclusive, also depends on the sovereign state as the main enforcer. True, there has been a recent trend toward incorporation of international human rights law into domestic law, and discussions in international forums on issues

Legitimate status’ importance



Ignoring human rights

Recent developments

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such as the right to development, collective rights of categories such as indigenous people, environmental protection, rights to good health and workers’ rights, especially those of women. However, it is equally true that most rights enumerated in prominent documents such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948), the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1966) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966) have been routinely ignored by national states, which remain the main enforcers of human and citizen rights. Legal supervision and sanctions in the international realm have remained low. This situation stands in marked contrast to citizenship rights enforcement in democratic regimes as this has been characterised by relatively efficient implementation. Despite all the shortcomings in conceptualisation and empirical analysis, theorists of post-national citizenship have rightfully highlighted a growing trend towards the increasing impact of human rights discourse on issues of immigrant integration. Some theorists cogently speak of ‘membership’ instead of ‘citizenship’ (Soysal 1994). Citizen rights at the national level are thus complemented by ‘new’ citizen rights at the EU level, for example, gender rights, which are generally farther advanced at the supranational level than at the member-state level, and which are pushed ahead by the ECJ, whose jurisdiction has to be incorporated into the law of member states. However, the EU is not only a very unique supranational entity without comparable institutions in other regions of the world, but, more importantly, such rights are usually restricted to citizens of member states. Extracommunitari, even those who are legally resident in the EU, are usually restricted to the law of the member state they reside in. This example already points towards a limit of the extension of citizen rights for non-citizens and thus the elevation of human rights to citizen rights: Citizenship cannot be extended to outsiders such as illegal aliens without fundamentally reshaping the p ­ olitical units within which they are embedded. Thus, we may ask whether human rights could evolve even further from civil rights to include social and political rights – like citizen rights did over the past three centuries, as argued by T. H. Marshall – without, in essence, becoming citizenship rights. And if such an evolution might be envisaged, what are the insti­ tutions necessary for the national-transnational-global governance of citizen rights? It might indeed make sense to speak of membership rights, obligations, identities and practices as a sort of continuum from human rights to citizen rights. This does not mean to follow the usual path from alien to denizen to citizen, as if this were a natural progression in a mobile world. Republican concepts of citizenship still imply this path as a series of gates through which immigrants ideally pass. This image evokes a powerful progression from admission to the territory and few rights to full inclusion into a na-

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tional political community from the vantage point of national states. Taking a more global perspective – or even one that uses concepts such as ‘world society’ to suggest that social actors at times refer to the normative and factual horizon of worldwide economic, political and cultural configurations – citizenship still remains one crucial way of full inclusion at the nation-society or national state level. Nonetheless, as the brief reference to illegal migrants seems to indicate, various categories of geographically mobile persons may require very different legal opportunities to participate meaningfully in societal life. Citizenship is one of them but certainly not the only one, since this concept implies a sharp distinction between insiders and outsiders and not a continuous scale in tune with the needs of border-crossing migrants.

Reconciling human rights and citizen rights? World citizenship If human rights and citizen rights are at odds at the national and supranational level, is there a possibility of reconciling human rights and citizen rights in the most inclusive of all citizenship constructs, world citizenship? After all, the supposed transcendence of the national state is seen to open up the prospect of world citizenship (Heater 2002). While much of this particular conversation occurs at the philosophical level, the impact of universal human rights regimes and the idea that organisations such as the United Nations have a role to play in ensuring the protection of those rights – including the interventions of various sorts into nations accused of rights violations – also gives it real-world evidence to examine and ­interpret. For the conceptualisation of global citizenship as a horizon of possibility there are two types of approaches. One of these stems from normative political philosophy, and the other from political sociology, more specifically, from differentiation-theoretical assumptions of world society theory. In normative political theory, in turn, two branches can be distinguished: a world citizenship or ‘genuine cosmopolitan’ perspective and a national cosmopolitan perspective. The genuinely cosmopolitan citizenship perspective views civil, political and social rights as part of a desirable world citizenship. An optimistic perspective may refer to Max Weber’s (1980) social and economic history and argue that citizenship was first conceived and practised at the municipal level in ancient Greece and medieval Europe before it moved up one level and became de jure and de facto congruous with membership in a territorial national state characterised by an authority-demos relationship. Citizenship and citizenship rights beyond the national state would therefore be an evolutionary leap forward (Heater 2004). Ultimately, this would, however, require a global political community with socio-moral resources that could be drawn on

Conceptualise world citizenship



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as required. This would be a broad extension of Immanuel Kant’s idea of a cosmopolitan right to hospitality (Linklater 1999) by means of a rational development of collective identities beyond the national level. Such a global political identity is today conceivable only as a transparent, constructed affiliation (Habermas 1998). This perspective would certainly be attractive in terms of the allocation of life chances according to legal citizenship. World citizenship would not acknowledge any privileges passed on by descent or birth within a certain territory. We would all formally have the same status as members of an all-encompassing, global polity. Such a community would, however, be greatly endangered by a ‘tyranny of the majority’ (De Tocqueville 1986) because of the unavailability of exit options, and thus undermine the first dimension of citizenship. More importantly, certain kinds of rights, such as social rights, would require a willingness to redistribute goods among anonymous others; that is, specific reciprocity and diffuse solidarity. A strong version of this notion is even less probable and less conceivable on a global scale than it is in the EU. While these qualities can be observed when disaster strikes, they have no legal status and certainly no regulative components, such as EU social policy to take but one example. This critique of the concept of world citizenship highlights the central elements of a republican version of national cosmopolitanism. The republican version grasps social rights primarily as a close form of diffuse solidarity on a national scale. As a consequence of this, several conditions can be fulfilled only in a national state. First, only holders of the respective legal citizenship are counted as valid members of a framed political community and in this way secure the socio-cultural basis for citizenship, namely trust among citizens. Second, a common culture has a bonding effect on the citizens and enables them to agree on substantive rights and obligations that form the basis of their membership. Third, citizenship confers participatory rights and political representation. Ultimately, world citizenship from this perspective appears to be little more than a vague cosmopolitan idea in a world lacking a fundamental moral consensus. A further criticism is that, at best, world citizenship would weaken the bonds that hold citizens of a national state together. And only these national bonds ensure that citizens maintain their ties to the rest of humanity (Walzer 1996). Yet, even this critique of the concept of world citizenship is debatable, based on empirical findings which suggest that world and national citizenship are not necessarily zero-sum notions (Furia 2005). These normative considerations should be supplemented by sociopolitical reflections that can be empirically validated, in order to shift the focus from desirable situations to actually emerging legal constructs and especially their institutional context. World society theory claims to address issues of inclusion and exclusion on a global scale. For example, Niklas Luhmann’s (1977) theory of functional differentiation replaces the

Citizenship Theories and Migration


national state as the main unit of analysis with a world society, using functionally differentiated societal subsystems as the main frame of reference. According to this theory, societal spheres are organised in subsystems that fulfil certain societal functions, such as the political, legal, economic and educational systems. These operate largely autonomously. In this view, the state has no privileged role in social steering but is part of the political system, which is one among many. There is a long-term evolution from segmented systems, in which societies are based on territorial entities, towards stratified systems in which the national state and class differentiation are expressions, up to functional differentiation, in which each system operates autonomously according to its own codes such as power/ non-power in the political system or money/no money in the economic system. Systems-based world society theory thus assumes that the master mechanism of functional differentiation makes concepts such as class and stratified assumptions about social inequality obsolete. Binary concepts such as inclusion into or exclusion from societal systems replace earlier notions, and thus pay no regard to the central dimension of citizenship and equal political liberty. In an age when the postulate of equality is claimed to have universal validity, world society in this view offers the widest scope for an analysis of domestic and global inequality. In a weak sense, world society can be conceived of as a horizon of expectation and meaning, not necessarily of concrete institutions. From a system-theoretical perspective the neglect of (world) citizenship rights comes as no surprise. First, conflicts between democracy and capitalism, upon which ideas such as social citizenship are based, are defined to be no longer adequate descriptions of societal processes because of the autonomy of societal subsystems such as the political and the economic systems. Second, the majority of the poor in so-called developing countries are excluded from functional systems such as education and the economy, and therefore ultimately cannot be mobilised on this issue (Luhmann 1997: 632-633). This argument overlooks the fact, however, that social movements and non-governmental organisations demand (social) rights directly as advocates of the poor, or that the poor make claims on their own. In short, it completely disregards the evolution of human and citizen rights as contentious political processes (cf. Tilly 1996). To simply overlook the salience of political contention and claimsmaking and the meta-norms of political and other forms of equality, and to oversimplify notions and gradations of (in)equality into the dichotomy of inclusion and exclusion is to lose sight of the mechanisms driving conflicts around membership. In some versions, the concept of world or global citizenship has overtones of an institutional monoculture. Nonetheless, even a global concept needs to take account of the diverse cultural readings of the terms ‘citizenship’ and ‘rights’. The question here is whether concepts such as political, civil, cultural and social rights and citizenship, as they developed in the

Systems and functions

Different political cultures


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corridor of Europe and North America, can be applied unhesitatingly in other regions of the world. What are the ramifications if, for example, social rights are removed from a state context and considered in relation to other forms of political rule? In other words, what is at stake is not merely the relative role of principles of social order such as the state, the market, the family and the community, as is the case in the welfare state regime literature (cf. Esping-Andersen 1995), but the constitution of political rule in itself. If, for instance, the concept of citizenship as interpreted in Europe is transferred directly to the African context, then dichotomies such as citizens/subjects and modernism/tradition immediately arise. Such dichotomies must be scrutinised for their historical context such as – in this case – colonialism (Mamdami 1996) and the respective interpretations of modernity and tradition. The problem also becomes quite manifest in discussions over citizenship in Latin America, for instance, in the debate on whether paternalistic, clientelistic forms of political participation – that is, clientship rather than citizenship – can also be deemed a valid form of democratic citizenship (see Dagnino 2003 versus Taylor 2004). The central issue here is to what extent clientelism, which does actually permit shortterm social security arrangements, rules out the autonomy of individuals as citizens in the long run.

Conclusion: ‘We’ and ‘Other’ unbound in diversity

Changing discourses

Citizenship has often implied dichotomizing views about ‘We’ within the political community and those ‘Other’ outsiders. Therefore, aptly, one may speak of national citizenship as a social closure around political communities. Yet, as we have seen, citizenship theories have increasingly conceptualised the boundaries of citizenship as less rigid, and started to explore the very formation of boundaries and their constant change and transformation. This has meant more attention to social categories other than class and nation. Forms of multiple citizenships, such as overlapping dual citizenship and nested citizenship in the EU are instances where discussions have focused on the future of citizenship. This is in addition to the neoliberal onslaught on social citizenship and the concern with citizenship participation in republican versions of national citizenship. We have also seen that the boundaries of citizenship are tested in the crucial cases of local citizenship and quasi-citizenship, and in what constitutes sociocultural resources underpinning legal citizenship. If the boundaries of citizenship do not simply coincide with state territories but also cannot be discussed without it, one needs to avoid prior assumptions about what level or dimension of citizenship has the most important status – national, global or local – and about what form best describes contemporary constellations – unitary, overlapping or nested.

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To take the first two forms, national and global, exemplifies the dangers of pressing ahead. World citizenship prioritises global justice discourses. This, taken to their logical end, leads to open borders arguments and normative concepts of world citizenship. National citizenship highlights the necessity of closure in order to foster democratic communities in which meaningful and deeply contextual moral and political discourses emerge. This view could end in a protectionist approach, which holds that immigration restriction is a condition sine qua non for upholding highly-regulated welfare states (cf. Freeman 1986). This line of thinking, finally, leads to arguments which hold that there is no such thing as a just or unjust distribution of membership. What such one-dimensional perspectives occlude is that we no longer live in a world (if, indeed, we ever did) where we can imagine ‘others’ as always already entirely outside the boundaries of the respective political community. Today, those who populate liberal pluralist states in Europe not only often have partially overlapping attachments to multiple communities. Their ties may reach into immigration countries; and from there backwards into countries of origin or forwards to other countries where their significant others live. It also implies that there is attachment to more than one political community in a given territory. One of the forms reflecting this multiplication is dual citizenship as a form of citizenship overlapping membership in distinct national states. The social structural equivalent is transnational social spaces, that is, social formations such as cross-border families, communities, networks and organisations spanning various places in multiple national contexts. Another form of multiple memberships is nested citizenship, as exemplified by actually existing forms of membership in the EU in cities, member states and the Union itself. Here, political communities themselves are enlarging, nested in supranational configurations, and creating new opportunities for sub-state citizenship, such as regional and local citizenship. The continued presence of non-citizens, along with the revival and emergence of non-national forms of citizenship, indicates that there is a number of these ‘others’ who live permanently among a territorially defined ‘us’. In a nutshell, ‘[T]he “other” is not elsewhere’ (Benhabib 2004). Indeed, socially constituted diversity has rapidly increased as a result of international migration and debates around integration of migrants and the integration of societies. Citizenship is one of the distinguishing markers between ‘We’ and ‘Other’. Its salience depends on the very construction of boundaries between ‘us’ and ‘them’. Since citizenship is a democratic form of membership, there is a built-in reflexive loop. The boundaries of membership, including the regulation of borders, are subject to democratic deliberation, which is a logical result of equal political liberties. This leads to the question of who decides the rules of the game in which borders and boundaries are deliberated. As Ivor Jennings (1956) pointed out, demands for democratic self-determination concerning the boundaries of political communities

New approaches

Contesting citizenship


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lead to a paradox: ‘[T]he people cannot decide unless someone decides who are the people’ (ibid.: 56). At the very least, this question suggests that ‘We’ and ‘Others’ are the results of contingent decisions. Moreover, even the way ‘We’ go about the construction of the ‘Other’ is not outside the bounds of our democratic deliberation. Thus, for example, the forum in which these questions are debated is far from trivial: backroom political bargains, parliament and public discourses in the mass media. While one may be critical of the quality of public and democratic debates regarding admission to membership, there is no alternative to democratic forms of contestation. The future of the by now multiplying forms of citizenship depends on which political forces prevail concerning the expansion, erosion, but also the various forms of extending citizenship, and the reformulation of the guiding questions.

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Waldrauch, H. (2001), Die Integration von Einwanderern: Ein Index der Rechtlichen Diskriminierung, Frankfurt: Campus. Walzer, M. (1989), ‘Citizenship’, in T. Ball, J. Farr & R. L. Hanson (eds), Political Innovation and Conceptual Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 211-220. Walzer, M. (1996), Thick and Thin: Moral Argument at Home and Abroad, Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press. Weber, M. (1980 [1922]), Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft. Grundriss der Verstehenden Soziologie. Fifth edition, revised by Johannes Winckelmann. Tübingen: J. C. B. Mohr (Paul Siebeck). Young, I. M. (1989), ‘Polity and group difference: A critique of the ideal of universal citizenship’, Ethics 99 (January): 250-274. Yuval-Davis, N. (2000), ‘Multi-layered citizenship and the boundaries of the “nation-state”’, International Social Science Review 1 (1): 112-127.

Key reading Bauböck, R. (1994), Transnational Citizenship: Membership and Rights in International Migration. Aldershot: Edward Elgar. Fahrmeir, A. (2007), Citizenship: The Rise and Fall of a Modern Concept. New Haven: Yale University Press. Faist, T. & P. Kivisto (eds) (2008), Dual Citizenship in Global Perspective: From Unitary to Multiple Citizenship. New York & Houndmills: Palgrave Macmillan. Janowski, T. (2010), The Ironies of Citizenship: Naturalization Policies in Advanced Industrialized Countries. New York: Cambridge University Press. Soysal, Y. N. (1994), Limits of Citizenship: Migrants and Postnational Membership in Europe. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

About the authors Thomas Faist is a professor of sociology at Bielefeld University. His main research interests are transnational relations, development sociology and migration studies. He has held visiting professorships at Malmö University and the University of Toronto. Recently, he published Transnational Migration, with Margit Fauser and Eveline Reisenauer (2013). Thomas Faist co-edited, with Nina Glick Schiller, Migration, Development and Transnationalization: A Critical Stance (2010), and with Rainer Bauböck, Diaspora and Transnationalism: Concepts, Theories and Methods (2010). Thomas Faist contributes to the Collaborative Research Centre programme ‘From Heterogeneities to Inequalities’.

Citizenship Theories and Migration


Peter Kivisto is the Richard A. Swanson Professor of Social Thought at Augustana College and Finland Distinguished Professor at the University of Turku. He recently completed two edited volumes, one with Peter Kraus on diversity in Finland and the other with Östen Wahlbeck on Nordic multiculturalism. He is working on a book on Jeffrey Alexander’s Civil Sphere thesis with Giuseppe Sciortino. He is the past editor of The Sociological Quarterly and serves as an advisory editor of Ethnic and Racial Studies.

3 Assimilation Richard Alba and Victor Nee

Summary The concept of ‘assimilation’ emerged out of the US experience with immigration in the early twentieth century. For a time, it was generalised to all racial and ethnic situations. After being subjected to harsh critique in the closing decades of the twentieth century for its apparent ethnocentrism and other faults, the concept re-emerged at the beginning of the twenty-first century. This chapter considers the newly revised concept of assimilation in relation to the historical experiences that gave rise to it and explores its potential relevance to contemporary immigration situations in North America and Western Europe. The distinction between assimilation and integration is also addressed. Keywords: assimilation, integration, neo-assimilation, segmented assimilation, social boundaries

Introduction Assimilation was once the indispensable idea in the study of immigrant groups. The theory of assimilation emerged out of the US experience with immigration in the early twentieth century and, for a time, was generalized to all ethno-racial situations. Subject to harsh critique in the closing decades of the twentieth century for its apparent ethnocentrism and other faults, the theory re-emerged in a revised version at the beginning of the twenty-first century. The current chapter considers the amended theory in relation to the assimilation canon of the mid-twentieth century and to the historical experiences that gave rise to the theory in the first place. It also explores the potential relevance of assimilation theory to the contemporary immigration situations in North America and Western Europe. A chapter on new assimilation ideas must also acknowledge that many scholars, especially those outside of the US, have not embraced them. They prefer to discuss immigrant-group incorporation in terms of ‘integration’.

Debates on “assimilation”


Richard Alba and Victor Nee

The relationship between the two, in both scientific and normative respects, will be addressed here. The chapter begins, however, with a discussion of the canonical ideas about assimilation that reached mature form during the 1960s in the USA and a consideration of their problematic aspects.

The assimilation canon in the USA


Assimilation theory is often seen as rigidly predicting the extinction of ethnic differences through the one-way adjustment of an immigrant group (or, perhaps better put, ‘immigrant-origin group’ since assimilation is far more advanced for the second and third generations than for the immigrant one) to the receiving society’s mainstream, which hardly changes at all. However, the theory did not start that way. In the Chicago School formulation, assimilation was far from mechanistic, and it did not demand the sloughing off of all ethnic characteristics. One of the best-known early definitions of assimilation, by Park and Burgess ([1921] 1969: 735), describes ‘a process of interpenetration and fusion in which persons and groups acquire the memory, sentiments and attitudes of other persons and groups and, by sharing their experience and history, are incorporated with them in a common historical life’. This definition does not require what many critics of assimilation theory assume, namely, the erasure of all signs of ethnic origins. Instead, it equates assimilation with changes that bring ethnic minorities into the societal mainstream. The canonical form of assimilation theory did not take shape until Milton Gordon’s (1964) classic exposition, Assimilation in American Life. The book had the virtue of laying out in a clear way for the first time a multidimensional concept, which was a necessity in light of the complexity of the phenomena that were included under the rubric of assimilation. Placing particular stress on the distinction between the cultural aspects of assimilation, or acculturation, and social integration into the mainstream and its institutions, or ‘structural’ assimilation in his lexicon, Gordon also formulated two famous hypotheses, namely, that acculturation typically happened first but did not inevitably lead to structural assimilation, but that once the latter took place, then assimilation would follow along all other dimensions. However, Gordon’s canonical formulation also entailed some problematic aspects and thus sowed the seeds of future criticism. One such aspect was the clearly one-sided nature of assimilation. It was, in his view, a process that changed the immigrant group but not the mainstream society. In another famous passage, Gordon described acculturation as the adoption by the immigrant-origin groups of the traits of what he called the ‘core culture’, which he identified with ‘middle-class cultural patterns of, largely, white Protestant, Anglo-Saxon origins’. Not only did Gordon fail to acknowledge the complexity of the mainstream culture of his time, which



varied substantially from one region to another, but implicitly his concept viewed assimilation as the crossing over of ethnic-minority individuals into the ethnic majority. This was not a concept that could transfer well to the contemporary immigration landscape of the United States, given the non-white racial status of the majority of immigrants and their descendants. For Gordon’s concept would seem to require that non-whites would need to become whites in order to fully assimilate. Indeed, even in Gordon’s time the one-way conception of assimilation was problematic for religion, given that most of the ethnics who were presumably assimilating belonged to minority religions – Catholicism and Judaism above all. Hence, he was forced to make an explicit exception for religion, since the assimilating ethnics did not usually convert to Protestantism. Another difficulty in the canonical version of assimilation theory was its teleological character. This, in fact, originates with the Chicago School, in Park’s race-relations cycle of ‘contact, competition, accommodation and eventual assimilation’, which appeared to cast assimilation as the inevitable final stage in relations between ethno-racial groups. While there can be doubt about how seriously Park took this idea, the same is not true for some of his followers. In particular, W. Lloyd Warner and Leo Srole in the book, The Social Systems of American Ethnic Groups (1945), portrayed all of the ethno-racial groups of ‘Yankee City’ (Newburyport, Massachusetts) as moving in the direction of assimilation, albeit at greatly varying rates. While for the groups of European origin, the time required varied from ‘short’ to ‘moderate’ (though the latter could require up to six generations, according to Warner and Srole, for groups like the Eastern European Jews and Southern Italians), for non-Europeans, such as African-Americans the process would be ‘slow’ to ‘very slow’, with these adjectives in fact implying uncertainty. ‘Slow’, in fact, refers to ‘a very long time in the future which is not yet discernible,’ while ‘very slow’ indicates that ‘the group will not be totally assimilated until the present American social order changes gradually or by revolution’. However, if these characterisations cast doubt on the relevance of assimilation to the non-European groups, they did not lead to an alternative conceptualisation of their incorporation into American society. For the social scientists who worked within the canonical assimilation framework, African-Americans and other non-whites were generally treated therefore as exceptions.

New assimilation theories The onset of a new immigration era in the USA led perhaps inevitably to a reconsideration of assimilation theory (Morawska 1994). The first serious revision was formulated by Alejandro Portes and Min Zhou (1993) in the form of ‘segmented’ assimilation. Portes and Zhou posited that as-


Assimilation process’ duration


Races and different levels of assimilation

Fading ethnic qualities

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similation can occur into different sectors, or ‘segments’, of American society and therefore entails distinct trajectories by assimilating individuals and groups. One trajectory leads to the middle-class mainstream; this is conventional or mainstream assimilation, consistent with the canonical concept of Gordon. But another leads to incorporation into the racialised population at the bottom of US society. According to Portes and Zhou, this ‘downward’ trajectory is likely to be followed by many in the second and later generations from the new immigrant groups, who are handicapped by their very humble starting points in US society, that is, the low class positions of their immigrant parents, and barred from entry to the white mainstream by their non-white race. On this route of assimilation, they are guided by the cultural models of poor, native-born African Americans and Latinos. Perceiving that they are likely to remain in their parents’ status at the bottom of the occupational hierarchy and evaluating this prospect negatively because, unlike their parents, they have absorbed the standards of the American mainstream, they respond with an oppositional stance and succumb to various temptations, such as dropping out of school and entering into deviant subcultures and even criminal careers. Portes and Zhou (1993) envision a pluralist alternative to either ‘upward’ (i.e., mainstream) or ‘downward’ assimilation. That is, they argue that some individuals and groups are able to draw on social and economic advantages by embedding much of their social life in an ethnic matrix (e.g., ethnic economic niches, ethnic communities). Under optimal circumstances, exemplified by the Cubans of Miami, immigrant-origin groups may even be able to equal within their ethnic communities and networks the socioeconomic opportunities afforded by the mainstream. In such cases, the pluralist route of incorporation would provide a truly viable alternative to assimilation. The other major revision to the canonical theory, often dubbed ‘neoassimilation’ theory, was formulated by Richard Alba and Victor Nee in the book, Remaking the American Mainstream (2003). The theory starts from a new definition of assimilation – the ‘decline of an ethnic distinction and its corollary cultural and social differences’. ‘Decline’ means in this context that a distinction attenuates in salience, that the occurrences for which it is relevant diminish in number and contract to fewer and fewer domains of social life. As this decline takes place, individuals’ ethnic origins become less and less relevant in relation to the members of another ethnic group (typically, but not necessarily, the ethnic majority group); and those on both sides of an ethnic boundary mutually perceive themselves with less and less frequency in terms of ethnic categories and increasingly only under specific circumstances. Assimilation, moreover, is not a dichotomous outcome and does not require the disappearance of ethnicity. Consequently, the individuals and groups undergoing assimilation may still bear a number of ethnic markers. It can occur on a large scale to members of a



group even as the group itself remains as a highly visible point of reference on the social landscape, embodied in an ethnic culture, neighbourhoods and institutional infrastructures. This definition leaves room for assimilation to occur as a two-sided process, whereby the immigrant minority influences the ethnic majority group and is not only influenced by it. The degree to which the assimilation process is in fact two-sided is an empirical question to be answered in specific cases and not a matter to be settled a priori. But there can be no question in the US context that the culture of the majority, the mainstream culture, has taken on layers of influence from the many immigrant groups who have come to US shores. The Alba and Nee (2003) account also envisions that assimilation can involve entry into a mainstream (a term that probably should be put in the plural to recognise the social heterogeneity and complex cultural layering that are involved in the mainstream of an economically advanced society), as distinct from acceptance as a member of the ethno-racial majority. The distinction is critical because it implies that assimilation does not require assimilating individuals or groups to become like the majority in all respects. The mainstream encompasses those social settings where the presence of members of the majority population of the appropriate age, gender, social class, et cetera, is unproblematic or taken for granted. But although, in the USA, mainstream settings are defined by the presence of whites, they are not necessarily limited to them. Others who enter these settings and are accepted in them are also part of the mainstream, at least for some part of their social life; and mainstream cultures can also incorporate elements of the cultures of new arrivals, giving them a variegated character. The Alba-Nee approach specifies mechanisms that bring about assimilation into the mainstream under the right conditions. The core mechanism involves the aspirations of immigrants and subsequent generations to improve the material and social circumstances of their lives. This mecha­nism does not require that individuals intend to take assimilatory steps. Often the unintended consequences of practical strategies taken in pursuit of highly valued goals – a good education, a good job, a nice place to live, interesting friends and acquaintances – result in specific forms of assimilation. For instance, in the USA, the search for a desirable place to live – with good schools and opportunities for children to grow up away from the seductions of deviant models of behaviour – leads many socio-economically successful ethnic families into communities where whites also reside in large numbers, since residentially linked resources and amenities tend to be concentrated in such places. One consequence, whether intended or not, is greater interaction with families of the majority group; such increased contact tends to encourage acculturation and social integration, especially for children. To be sure, this form of integration can only take place when families are not excluded from desirable

Other forms of discrimination


Influences on mainstream

Secondgeneration’s changes

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communities by racial segregation, and research indicates that Asians and light-skinned Latinos are the most likely to be able to enter such communities (Massey & Denton 1993). In the US context, neo-assimilation theory also points to changes in societal institutions as contributing to the prospects for mainstream assimilation by many members of new immigrant minorities. In particular, there have been fundamental changes in the societal ‘rules of the game’ since the 1960s. Prior to the Second World War, these rules bolstered the racism that excluded non-white minorities from effective participation in civil society. For example, Asian immigrants were ineligible for citizenship until 1952, and they faced many discriminatory local and regional laws that restricted their property rights and civil liberties. But the legal changes of the civilrights era extended fundamental constitutional rights to racial minorities, and they were accompanied by new institutional arrangements, such as affirmative action and government enforcement of anti-discrimination laws that have increased the cost of discrimination. These institutional changes have gone hand in hand with changes in mainstream values, including a remarkable decline in the power of racist ideologies. The recent evidence about the second generation in the USA, while hardly definitive given the youth of most members of that generation, seems to highlight the continuing importance of the mainstream-assimilation modality. For the evidence demonstrates substantial socio-economic advance on the part of the majority of its members, far more, in truth, than was expected at the beginning of the 1990s when the theory of segmented assimilation was formulated and when scholars were considering scenarios involving massive stagnation on the part of the children of immigrants (Gans 1992). The most recent data from the Children of Immigrants Longitudinal Study, directed by Portes and Rubén Rumbaut (Portes, FernándezKelly & Haller 2005), report that the average member of the Miami sample (one of the two samples in the study) had achieved an unexpectedly high level of education, namely, two years of post-secondary education, and only 4 per cent had failed to complete secondary school. Moreover, the average family income of sample members was actually higher than that reported by the census for Miami as a whole. Positive findings about secondgeneration socio-economic advance have also emerged from the New York second-generation study, directed by Philip Kasinitz, John Mollenkopf and Mary Waters (Kasinitz et al. 2008). This study finds, moreover, that the most successful groups, like the Chinese, have made use of mainstream institutions. Since intergenerational advance by the children of low-wage immigrants seems consistent with conventional ideas about assimilation, such findings encourage a focus on assimilation into the mainstream as the major form of incorporation at present in the USA.



Boundary theory Neo-assimilation theory draws upon ideas about social boundaries for additional ways to think about processes of assimilation and their implications. A social boundary can be conceptualised as a social distinction that individuals make in their everyday lives and that shapes their actions and mental orientations towards others (Lamont and Molnár 2002). Obviously, then, ethnic and racial distinctions can be viewed as social boundaries, and assimilation in the Alba and Nee definition involves the decline of a boundary’s relevance, for a group (in relation to another group) or for some individuals from it. However, this decline of relevance can come about in one of three ways (Zolberg & Woon 1999). Boundary crossing corresponds to the classic version of individual-level assimilation: someone moves from one group to another, without any real change to the boundary itself (although if such boundary crossings happen on a large scale and in a consistent direction, then the social structure is being altered). Boundary blurring implies that the social profile of a boundary has become less distinct: the clarity of the social distinction involved has become clouded. The final process, boundary shifting, involves the relocation of a boundary so that populations once situated on one side are now included on the other: former outsiders are thereby transformed into insiders. The mechanism of boundary shift has been invoked to explain the mass assimilation of the so-called ‘white ethnics’ in the USA in the middle of the twentieth century. Since the racial position of groups such as the Irish, Italians and Eastern European Jews was initially ambiguous, their eventual acceptance as whites was key to their assimilation in the post-Second World War period. In other words, the racial boundary shifted to include them within the dominant population (e.g., Jacobson 1998; Roediger 2005). However, the distinction between boundary crossing and boundary blurring is more relevant for contemporary immigration situations. Alba (2005) argues that the social psychology of these two processes is quite different – and hence so too are their implications for the magnitude and selectivity of assimilation. In the presence of an unambiguous, or ‘bright’, boundary, boundary crossing will generally be experienced as something akin to a conversion, that is, a departure from one group and a discarding of signs of membership in it, linked to an attempt to enter into another, with all of the social and psychic burdens a conversion process entails, such as growing distance from peers, feelings of disloyalty and anxieties about acceptance. Where a boundary is blurred, by contrast, individuals can be seen as simultaneously members of the groups on both sides of the boundary, or sometimes they appear to be members of one and at other times members of the other. In this case, assimilation may be eased insofar as the individuals undergoing it do not sense a rupture between participation in mainstream institutions and familiar social and cultural practices

Altering social boundaries



Different institutional structures’ impacts

Richard Alba and Victor Nee

and identities; nor are they forced to choose between the mainstream and their group of origin. Assimilation of this type involves intermediate, or hyphenated, stages, that allow individuals to feel simultaneously as members of an ethnic minority and of the mainstream. One way that blurring can occur is when the mainstream culture and identity are relatively porous and allow for the incorporation of cultural elements brought by immigrant groups. The distinction is implicated in the magnitude of the assimilation processes, the number of individuals who can become involved. When assimilation more or less requires a breaking of many ties to the group of origin and the assumption of a high degree of risk of failure, it is unlikely to be undertaken by large numbers, even in the second generation. Blurring boundaries are more conducive to large-scale assimilation. The type of boundary also bears some relationship, albeit a complex one, to whether assimilation occurs as an individualistic process or a group one. In the latter case, when large numbers of minority individuals may be assimilating at the same time and thus encounter one another in venues associated with mobility (e.g., the case of Asian groups in US higher education), they are often able to draw on ethnic resources, such as social networks, for assistance. At first sight, bright boundaries would appear to lend themselves to a largely individualistic pattern of assimilation. However, the resistance to minority mobility created by such boundaries also calls forth minority collective action to break down barriers. The US Civil Rights Movement is an obvious example. But how can we know whether a boundary is blurred or blur-able? To answer this question, we must look to the way in which it is institutionalised, that is, the ‘web of interrelated’ normative patterns that govern the way that the boundary is manifested to social actors (Nee & Ingram 1998: 19). These normative patterns, exemplified by widely shared and often taken-for-granted expectations about which and how religious holidays will be publicly recognised (e.g., Christmas but not Eid al-Fitr), determine the social distance between majority and minority group and the difficulties associated with bridging it. Institutionalisation, it should be noted, is not simply a matter of the native-immigrant distinction itself, but also of other distinctions, such as those in religion and language, that are correlated with it. When this complex of distinctions is manifest in many domains (implying that participants enact it with regularity in their everyday lives) and is associated with salient asymmetries in social status and power, then it is unlikely to be blur-able; in the opposite case, it is already blurred or is at least blur-able. That social boundaries separate immigrant minority groups from native majority groups and are typically imposed or maintained by majorities as a way of creating social distance and preserving privileges (or achieving ‘monopolistic closure’, to employ the famous phrase of Max Weber) is



hardly news. But what the newer thinking about boundaries and assimilation does call attention to is twofold: (i) native-immigrant boundaries are not all the same, and their nature may admit of greater or lesser permeability and mutability; and (ii) boundaries are generally constructed from cultural, legal and institutional materials that are already at hand and thus they depend in a path-dependent way on the prior histories of the societies and groups involved. Finally, they are sociologically complex in that they manifest themselves in distinct ways in different domains.

The historical basis of assimilation theory Assimilation theory is based on the incorporation of the descendants of Southern and Eastern European immigrants into the US mainstream, a process that accelerated to completion in the quarter century following the end of the Second World War (Perlmann and Waldinger 1997). The immigrants themselves were regarded as outsiders, on grounds that include racial, ethnic and religious elements. Arriving in large numbers at a time when scientific racism was at its zenith, they were widely seen as racially inferior to ‘old-stock’ white Americans, descended from Northern and Western European forebears. Primarily of Catholic, Jewish and Orthodox faiths, they had entered a society that defined itself as Christian in a postReformation sense; indeed, the resurgence of the Ku Klux Klan in the early 1920s was spurred largely by the threat these immigrants, and especially the Catholics among them, posed to the Protestant identity of the American nation. Finally, the cultures of the immigrants were viewed as impediments to their integration, and an Americanisation campaign, which grew in intensity during and after World War I, aimed to replace these cultures with American ways, from cooking, to clothing, to leisure pastimes. Assimilation was most visibly on the march in the post-Second World War period, when the young adults from the then new immigrant groups belonged primarily to the second and third generations. The assimilation they experienced was expressed along a number of dimensions and eroded the social foundations for ethnic distinctions. It diminished the cultural differences that served to signal ethnic membership to others and to sustain ethnic solidarity; it brought about a rough parity of life chances to attain such socio-economic goods as educational credentials and remunerative jobs, while loosening the attachment of ethnicity to specific economic niches; it shifted residence away from central-city ethnic neighbourhoods to ethnically mixed suburbs and urban neighbourhoods; and it fostered relatively easy social intercourse across ethnic lines. Not surprisingly, then, the rates of intermarriage involving these groups rose sharply in the postwar period to the point that, for most of them – the Italians and Poles, for example – intermarriage became the rule and endogamy the excep-

Religion’s influences


Language proficiency

Criticism on racial differences

Richard Alba and Victor Nee

tion. Under conditions of socio-economic parity and frequent boundary crossing, ethnicity itself took on a voluntary character, and ethnic identity became an option, exercised only occasionally by many, rather than an inescapable categorisation imposed from the outside (Waters 1990). The processes underlying this assimilation en masse are still not well understood. Certainly, some forms of assimilation were progressing before the critical post-war period. The strongest body of evidence for this statement concerns linguistic assimilation and supports a three-generation model of Anglicisation, or transition to English monolingualism, a model that was first codified by sociolinguists Joshua Fishman and Calvin Veltman. In the first or immigrant generation, many individuals learned some English, but they generally preferred to use their native language, especially at home. Their children usually grew up as bilinguals, but many of these children preferred English. A well-known phenomenon in immigrant homes, then and today, was that of children understanding what their parents say to them in the mother tongue but answering back in English. The second generation generally spoke English at home when establishing its own households and rearing children. Consequently, by the third generation, the prevalent pattern was English monolingualism, and knowledge of the mother tongue was mostly fragmentary. (Recent evidence suggests that the three-generation model is a widespread, albeit not universal, pattern among contemporary immigrant groups; see Alba & Nee 2003: Chapter 6.) But the singularity of the post-war period stands out. In recent years, the approach of historians to the mass assimilation of this period has emphasised the racial transformation in prior decades that took such ‘in-between’ groups as southern Italians and Eastern European Jews and made them questionably into white Americans. Historians have observed – correctly – that this process was abetted by law and social policy, both of which classified the new groups with other whites, while excluding nonwhites from the benefits the new groups obtained (Jacobson 1998; Roediger 2005). However, this historical perspective, dubbed the ‘whiteness’ literature, sheds light on only some aspects of the changes. It answers one of the two central questions about the mass assimilation, namely, how were the Southern and Eastern European groups, along with Irish Catholics, who initially seemed scarcely more advantaged than blacks in US cities, able to move so decisively ahead of them (see also Lieberson 1980). But, by emphasising race so strongly, it fails to recognise the second question, which asks how were the white ethnics able to attain parity and integration with native white Protestants, the ethnic core of American society a century ago. Why, in other words, did the USA evolve by the middle of the twentieth century towards a two-group division, white versus non-white (and, in most places, black), rather than a three-tiered one, with the white ethnics remaining in-between? How such a dramatic decline could occur in the significance of what had been powerful social distinctions, such as



that between Protestants and Catholics, ought to be a critical question about the ethno-racial boundary changes of the mid-twentieth century because it focuses attention on the processes by which a hierarchically ordered boundary, one that seals off the privileges of a core group, loses its salience and its power to exclude. In answering this second question, the nature of the opportunities for social mobility during the post-war period must come into play. Opportunities to get ahead have surely played a major part in US assimilation, no matter what the time point. But the mobility in the 1945-1970 period had a unusual, non-zero-sum character; that is, it resulted from expansion of the post-secondary educational system and of middle and upper-middle portions of the occupational distribution. Hence, the socio-economic ascent of the white ethnics posed minimal threat to the privileges of established groups (e.g., to be able to assure that their children received high-quality university educations and good jobs afterwards). Moreover, due partly to the enormous reorganisation of residential space occurring as a result of suburbanisation, upwardly mobile white ethnics were able to translate their improved socio-economic position into greater social proximity to mainstream whites. In all likelihood, these are ideal conditions for boundary change to occur, and it did. As a consequence, the hard edges of the mainstream/ethnic boundary blurred, and the distinctions inhering in ethnic and religious difference weakened (Alba 2009).

Assimilation: A universal theory? Assimilation theory has had a considerable impact on studies of immigration groups in Western Europe. I focus here on two European societies, France and Germany, which are frequently viewed as contrasts in terms of their incorporation models. France is usually seen as akin to the USA in terms of the salience on the mainstream assimilation pathway of incorporation while Germany is typically viewed as an ethno-cultural nation at risk of excluding new immigrant minorities such as the Turks that cannot emulate mainstream ethnic and cultural templates (Brubaker 1992; Schnapper 1991). Yet in Germany there is no question but that early studies of the incorporation of guest-worker groups were conducted within an assimilation framework largely imported from the USA. Scholars such as Hartmut Esser (1980) looked to the concepts developed by Gordon as providing the key indices by which incorporation should be assessed. Perhaps this development is not surprising, for German sociologists perceived their society as at the beginnings of a long-term process of immigrant-group absorption, a process with which the USA already had accumulated a great deal of experience.

Social mobility


Turks immigrants’ high assimilation

Situation in France

Richard Alba and Victor Nee

More recent German research, while not necessarily inspired by the theories developed in the USA, echoes the debates taking place there. One dispute concerns the willingness of the Turks and perhaps other groups to eventually integrate into the German mainstream. Some analysts, such as Necla Kelek (2005), argue that the Turks in particular, partly in response to a perceived lack of welcome in German society and partly because of the strength of their transnational ties, are forming a marginalised, parallel subsociety. The analogy to the downward-assimilation trajectory as depicted by segmented-assimilation theory is striking. However, Claudia Diehl and Rainer Schnell (2006) find that indicators of assimilation have not declined over time and that the second generation of every group ranks markedly higher on these scales than the immigrant one does. Frank Kalter and Nadia Granato (2002) also observe the dynamic role played by generation; however, they highlight that the educational distance of some second-generation groups, most notably, that of the Turks, from the mainstream is not diminishing. These varied findings indicate a need to better integrate the insights from segmented-assimilation and new-assimilation theories to encompass the spectrum of incorporation trajectories found in Germany and elsewhere. Esser (2008), working from a rational-choice framework, has made the first such attempt. Recent research in France likewise suggests the potential relevance of both segmented-assimilation and new-assimilation theories. In the mid1990s, Michèle Tribalat (1995, 1996) carried out a large-scale assessment of the assimilation trajectory of the major immigrant groups to France. Considering the changes taking place in a variety of domains – education, language, family patterns and religion – Tribalat concluded that, in most respects, the immigrant groups were drawing closer to the French mainstream. However, the degree to which this is true and the barriers that stand in the way of further convergence vary from group to group, depending on their immigration history and prior relationship to France. In this respect, there appear to be powerful forces working against full assimilation in the cases of groups coming from former French colonies, especially those of North and sub-Saharan Africa. Recent research on the experiences of the second generations from these groups in the labour market reveals that their members suffer from a heavy ethnic penalty, due in substantial part to overt discrimination by employers (Silberman 2011; Lucassen 2005). Other European scholars are attempting to move the theoretical focus away from assimilation and toward a more loosely defined concept, that of ‘integration’. Indeed, ‘integration’ is probably the term most widely used in Europe to describe successful incorporation. The obvious question is what is the relationship between these concepts. Integration is not consistently defined by scholars who use it, but in general its scope includes the ‘public’ aspects of immigrant and secondgeneration lives. Thus, its use usually stresses the attainment of parity with



the societal majority group in educational institutions, the labour market and civil society. In this sense, it can be seen as encompassing a subset of the dimensions of assimilation. However, many scholars who use ‘integration’ to analyse incorporation would undoubtedly reject the relevance of the remaining dimensions of assimilation and view them as intruding on the autonomy of immigrant families to decide on, for example, cultural aspects of their lives. Hans Vermeulen and Rinus Penninx (2001: 2) observe that the term was introduced into the discourse of several European countries in order to replace assimilation and ‘to indicate a greater degree of tolerance and respect for ethnocultural differences’. There is, then, a normative aspect to the unresolved relationship between these two concepts; it concerns the proper standard for judging when ‘successful’ incorporation has taken place. One defence by scholars who use assimilation theory can be scientific in character. Assimilation has happened and does happen. It therefore is appropriate to theorise its nature and the conditions that produce it, as well as to measure its empirical extent. But another motivation is to engage more directly the normative aspects of these concepts. In societies where there is a dominant ethnic population that identifies the nation with its history, integration in the sense indicated above may not be sufficient to protect the members of a minority group from disadvantage over the long term. It is a sociological commonplace to observe that a dominant group – which is ‘dominant’ precisely in the sense that it is more powerful than other groups, that its members generally occupy key sites of institutional power throughout the societal landscape – seeks to preserve, even to enhance, its privileges and advantages. As long as there is a discernable boundary between the dominant group and a minority one, there remains the possibility of institutional and individual-level discrimination in favour of the former. This discrimination can be expressed in numerous ways: residential concentrations of the two groups in areas that differ in key resources and amenities and thereby provide advantages to those who reside where the dominant group is concentrated; school systems that institutionalise the dominant-group culture, thereby giving advantages to students who possess that culture as a form of birthright and disadvantaging others; ethnically based networks that funnel workers from the minority into labour-market niches in declining occupations and industries, while the networks of the dominant group retain possession of the best niches, those that provide the most stable and remunerative employment. As long as only integration occurs – that is, incorporation leaves groups separate in domains of socially intimate relationships and the mainstream culture remains identified with that of the dominant group – a social boundary is in place and can provide a site for the allocation of advantages and disadvantages.

Introducing alternative concepts

Integration versus assimilation


Richard Alba and Victor Nee

What prospects for changes to social boundaries in contemporary immigration societies?

Opportunities for non-white immigrants

For many scholars, the mass assimilation of the white ethnics in the USA may seem a unique experience and therefore of little utility as a prototype for the assimilation of contemporary immigrant-origin minorities. As noted earlier, this concentrated assimilation, occurring to a disproportionate extent within the quarter century following the end of the Second World War, depended on the widespread availability of opportunities for social ascent by ethnicities that, in turn, did not directly challenge the position of the already well-established middle and upper-middle classes of white Protestants. This was non-zero-sum mobility, in short. But there is considerable pessimism about mobility of immigrant-origin minorities today, in part because of structural economic changes – for example, the presumption of an ‘hour glass’ labour market (Portes & Zhou 1993). Nevertheless, it is not at all difficult to envision a scenario for the USA that could produce non-zero-sum mobility from which immigrant-origin, along with other, minorities could benefit on a large scale (for details, see Alba 2009). That scenario would be initiated by the departure from the workforce of the huge, heavily white and well-educated baby-boom cohorts, those Americans born in the post-war years from 1946 to 1964. Their retirement will be one of the major phenomena of the next quarter of a century, through the 2030s; and it will open up the labour market, especially in the ranks of better-paid jobs, to a degree unknown since the middle of the twentieth century. Another reason why this will be non-zero-sum mobility is because there will not be enough whites to take the good jobs that other whites are leaving. The birth cohorts that will be entering the labour market in coming years will contain substantially smaller contingents of whites than the departing cohorts. In other words, young white Americans from families in which they would be expected as a matter of course to obtain post-secondary credentials and occupy well-paying jobs will be significantly fewer than the number of those jobs available. Others will take them. There is no guarantee, to be sure, that immigrant-origin minorities like Hispanics will be the major beneficiaries of this changing of the guard in the US workforce. Other groups could also benefit from the opening up of the labour market, in particular, working-class whites, newly arriving immigrants and white women could contend for the unclaimed good jobs. However, careful analysis suggests limits to the ability of each of these groups to satisfy future needs for highly trained workers, leaving plenty of room for mobility by minorities. Nevertheless, there is also a major challenge to the prospects for that mobility, namely, the lagging educational attainment, especially post-secondary, of the major minority groups apart from Asian Americans. That is a challenge that can be met,



but only if the USA is willing to invest in improving its educational system, especially those parts that serve mainly minority students, which research has shown to be quite inferior to the parts serving mainly white students (Myers 2007). If immigrant-origin minorities are able to take advantage of non-zerosum mobility on a large scale, then at least one other mechanism must come into play for boundary change to occur; namely, they must be able to convert their socio-economic ascent into social proximity to the majority group. Proximity combined with parity in socio-economic status approximates the conditions under which the contact hypothesis applies and the brightness of a social distinction founded on ethnic and immigration statuses starts to fade. In the USA, the research evidence on this conversion, which comes principally from studies of residential integration and intermarriage, is somewhat ambiguous, especially with regard to the role of skin colour and other aspects of racial difference. But it does indicate the members of some immigrant-origin groups, including some that are non-white, are able to effect this conversion. That is, their more successful members in socio-economic terms move into communities that have larger numbers of the white majority and they intermarry with greater frequency. While the precise configuration of elements will obviously differ from place to place, similar dynamics could arise in many other economically developed societies that are home to large immigrant-origin populations. In Western Europe, demographic dynamics point to racial and ethnic shifts across birth cohorts as pronounced as those in the USA and to shortages of majority-group workers in the labour market as well (particularly in countries like Germany that have experienced sustained low levels of fertility among the native population). These demographic conditions could favour non-zero-sum mobility for the European born and raised members of immigrant minorities who have acquired the educational, cultural and social capital to take advantage of opportunities for socio-economic advance. If such non-zero-sum mobility does develop, then the brightness of the boundaries that currently distinguish the native population from immigrant-origin ones could fade, at least at some levels of these societies. This is, granted, still quite hypothetical, and demography is not destiny because the ultimate outcomes will be shaped as much by human agents as by demographic and socio-economic structures. But we can only think fruitfully about such potential boundary changes if we have concepts that acknowledge that they can occur and help us to identify the conditions that facilitate them. For that reason, a theory of assimilation may again become indispensable in the early twenty-first century.



Richard Alba and Victor Nee

References Alba, R. (2005), ‘Bright versus blurred boundaries: Second-generation assimilation and exclusion in France, Germany, and the United States’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 28: 20-49. Alba, R. (2009), Blurring the Color Line: The New Chance for a More Integrated America. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Alba, R. & V. Nee (2003), Remaking the American Mainstream: Assimilation and Contemporary Immigration. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Brubaker, R. (1992), Citizenship and Nationhood in France and Germany. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Diehl, C. & R. Schnell (2006), ‘“Reactive ethnicity” or “assimilation”? Statements, arguments, and first empirical evidence for labor migrants in Germany’, International Migration Review 40: 786-816. Esser, H. (1980), Aspekte der Wanderungssoziologie: Assimilation und Integration von Wandern, ethnischen Gruppen und Minderheiten. Eine handlunstheoretische Analyse. Darmstadt/Neuwied: Luchterhand. Esser, H. (2008), ‘Assimilation, ethnische Schichtung oder selektive Akkulturation? Neuere Theorien der Eingliederung von Migranten und das Modell der intergenerationalen Integration’, Kölner Zeitschrift für Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie 48: 81-107. Gans, H. (1992), ‘Second-generation decline: Scenarios for the economic and ethnic futures of post-1965 American immigrants’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 15: 173-192. Gordon, M. (1964), Assimilation in American Life. New York: Oxford University Press. Jacobson, M. (1998), Whiteness of a Different Color: European Immigrants and the Alchemy of Race. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Kalter, F. & N. Granato (2002), ‘Demographic change, educational expansion, and structural assimilation of immigrants’, European Sociological Review 18: 199-216. Kasinitz, P., J. Mollenkopf, M. Waters & J. Holdaway (2008), Inheriting the City: The Children of Immigrants Come of Age. Cambridge and New York: Harvard University Press and Russell Sage Foundation. Kelek, N. (2005), Die fremde Braut: Ein Bericht aus dem Inneren des türkischen Lebens in Deutschland. Cologne: Kiepenheuer and Witsch. Lamont, M. & V. Molnár (2002), ‘The study of boundaries in the social sciences’, Annual Review of Sociology 28: 167-195. Lieberson, S. (1980), A Piece of the Pie: Blacks and White Immigrants since 1880. Berkeley: University of California Press. Lucassen, L. (2005), The Immigrant Threat: The Integration of Old and New Migrants in Western Europe since 1850. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Massey, D. and N. Denton (1993), American Apartheid: Segregation and the Making of the Underclass. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Morowska, E. (1994), ‘In defense of the assimilation model’, Journal of American Ethnic History 13: 76-87.



Myers, D. (2007), Immigrants and Boomers: Forging a New Social Contract for the Future of America. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Nee, V. & P. Ingram (1998), ‘Embeddedness and beyond: Institutions, exchange and social structure’, in M. Brinton and V. Nee (eds), The New Institutionalism in Sociology. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Park, R. & E. W. Burgess ([1921] 1969), Introduction to the Science of Sociology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Perlmann, J. & R. Waldinger (1997), ‘Second-generation decline? Children of immigrants, past and present; a reconsideration’, International Migration Review 31: 893-922. Portes, A., P. Fernández-Kelly & W. Haller (2005), ‘Segmented assimilation on the ground: The new second generation in early adulthood’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 28: 1000-1040. Portes, A. & M. Zhou (1993), ‘The new second generation: Segmented assimilation and its variants’, The Annals 530: 74-96. Roediger, D. (2005), Working Toward Whiteness: How America’s Immigrants Became White; The Strange Journey from Ellis Island to the Suburbs. New York: Basic Books. Schnapper, D. (1991), La France de l’Intégration: Sociologie de la Nation en 1990. Paris: Éditions Gallimard. Silberman, R. (2011), ‘The employment of second generations in France: The Republican model and the November 2005 riots’, in R. Alba and M. C. Waters (eds), The Next Generation: Immigrant Youth in a Comparative Perspective. New York: New York University Press, 283-315. Tribalat, M. (1995), Faire France: Une Enquête sur les Immigrés et Leurs Enfants. Paris: Éditions La Découverte. Tribalat, M. (1996), De l’Immigration à l’Assimilation: Enquête sur les Populations d’Origine Étrangère en France. Paris: Éditions La Découverte. Vermeulen, H. & R. Penninx (2001), Immigrant Integration: The Dutch Case. Amsterdam: Het Spinhuis. Warner, W. L. & L. Srole (1945), The Social Systems of American Ethnic Groups. New Haven: Yale University Press. Waters, M. (1990), Ethnic Options: Choosing Identities in America. Berkeley: University of California Press. Zolberg, A. & L. L. Woon (1999), ‘Why Islam is like Spanish: Cultural incorporation in Europe and the United States’, Politics & Society 27: 5-38.

Key reading Alba, R. & V. Nee (2003), Remaking the American Mainstream: Assimilation and Contemporary Immigration. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Kasinitz, P., J. Mollenkopf, M. Waters & J. Holdaway (2008), Inheriting the City: The Children of Immigrants Come of Age. Cambridge and New York: Harvard University Press and Russell Sage Foundation.


Richard Alba and Victor Nee

Myers, D. (2007), Immigrants and Boomers: Forging a New Social Contract for the Future of America. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Portes, A. & M. Zhou (1993), ‘The new second generation: Segmented assimilation and its variants’, The Annals 530: 74-96. Zolberg, A. & L. L. Woon (1999), ‘Why Islam is like Spanish: Cultural incorporation in Europe and the United States’, Politics & Society 27: 5-38.

About the authors Richard Alba is a distinguished professor of sociology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. His volume on assimilation theory, Remaking the American Mainstream (2003), co-authored with Victor Nee, is one of the most-cited works in American sociology. Among his recent books is Blurring the Color Line: The New Chance for a More Integrated America (2009). Victor Nee is the Frank and Rosa Rhodes Professor at Cornell University and director of the Center for the Study of Economy and Society. His most recent books include Capitalism from Below (2012) with Sonja Opper, On Capitalism (2007), edited with Richard Swedberg, and The Economic Sociology of Capitalism (2005), also edited with Richard Swedberg. His volume on assimilation theory, Remaking the American Mainstream (2003), coauthored with Richard Alba, is one of the most-cited works in American sociology.

4  Multicultural Models John Eade and Paolo Ruspini

Summary This chapter examines the academic models developed to understand the cultural diversity generated by global migration. The focus is on how those models have engaged with multiculturalism as state policy and practice in Europe as well as in North America. Attention is also given to the relationship between multiculturalism and cosmopolitanism across an expanding EU and the limited empirical research undertaken on everyday multicultural and cosmopolitan discourses and practices across Europe. Keywords: multiculturalism, diversity, migration, ethnic minorities, cosmopolitanism

Cultural diversity, multiculturalism and multiculturalisms Numerous key issues have been raised by political theorists and social scien­tists in their attempts to understand the cultural diversity generated by global migration since the 1950s. Ideally, those issues should be considered in a global context but, given the limited space available here, the focus will be on the North American and Western European regions. To find our way through the complex academic debate concerning cultural diversity in these two regions we need first to distinguish between cultural diversity and multiculturalism. In today’s world, most societies are culturally heterogeneous to various degrees. Multiculturalism, on the other hand, will be approached here in terms of public policies which have been developed by nation-states to deal with this heterogeneity. These policies have been most evident in the Anglophone countries of Canada, the USA, Britain and Australia. State multiculturalism probably reached its peak in the late 1990s. The events of ‘9/11’ and other terrorist attacks stimulated a backlash. This resulted in prominent European politicians such as David Cameron and Angela Merkel rejecting what they referred to as ‘multiculturalism’. The political

Approaching immigration


John Eade and Paolo Ruspini

focus has since shifted towards promoting ‘social cohesion’, ‘integration’, equality and diversity policies, and building consensus around certain common values associated with ‘Western democracy’. Nevertheless, as we shall see, these developments have encouraged some academic commentators to propose a shift in focus towards cosmopolitanism, while others have sought to explore the variety of European multiculturalisms, despite the political backlash. Although academic debates have been highly normative in character, there has been a welcome move towards the empirical analysis of state multicultural policies and practices in the European region as well as research by social scientists of ‘everyday multiculturalism(s)’ in certain West European cities.

Liberal approaches within political theory

Adjusting policies

The Canadian and Australian federal governments were early proponents of multiculturalist policies and practices, and Canada has produced two academics – Will Kymlicka and Charles Taylor – who have made a major contribution to academic debate about multiculturalism from a broadly liberal position within political theory.1 During the 1960s, Canadian political leaders sought to resolve differences between areas of the country dominated by either Anglophone or Francophone citizens by introducing a policy of bilingualism. However, this failed to satisfy those who could not claim descent from those two groups, such as indigenous communities and migrants from Eastern Europe, Africa and South Asia. In 1971, Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau sought to resolve the problem through a government initiative called ‘Announcement of Implementation of Policy of Multiculturalism within a Bilingual Framework’. This led eventually to the Multiculturalism Act of 1988. The aim was to sustain national unity through official support for the practice of ‘pluralistic multiculturalism’ by which minorities could celebrate their cultural distinctiveness. Although Canada took the lead in promoting state multiculturalism, Kymlicka (2007: 3) claims that multicultural models can no longer be associated with his country or any other since multiculturalism has been globalised: In the last forty years, we have witnessed a veritable revolution around the world in the relations between states and ethnocultural minorities. Older models of assimilationist and homogenizing nation-states are in1

Since Australia was also an early supporter of state multiculturalism, academics there have made a highly significant contribution to debates about government policies and the politics of representation involving minority groups. See, for example, Castles et al. (1988) and Hage (1998).

Multicultural Models


creasingly being contested, and often displaced, by newer ‘multicultural’ models of the state and of citizenship. This is reflected, for example, in the widespread adoption of cultural and religious accommodations for immigrant groups, the acceptance of territorial autonomy and language rights for national minorities, and the recognition of land claims and selfgovernment rights for indigenous peoples.

Multiculturalism is no longer driven by state policies and practices since the key drivers are now international, intergovernmental organisations such as the United Nations and the World Bank at the global level and the EU at the regional level (Kymlicka 2007: 10). He claims that ‘liberal multiculturalism’ is now being globally diffused – a process which assumes ‘that policies of recognizing and accommodating ethnic diversity can expand human freedom, strengthen human rights, diminish ethnic and racial hierarchies and deepen democracy’ (Kymlicka 2007: 18). The belief that individuals share certain commonalities defined, for example, by religion, language or territory lies at the heart of the Canadian government’s approach towards multiculturalism and Kymlicka’s claim concerning the global diffusion of ‘liberal multiculturalism’. This has raised the key question of how individuals might balance their loyalties to particular minority groups and to the nation. Taylor sought to answer this question by exploring how particular group rights were mobilised through the politics of recognition. In two volumes (Taylor 1992; Taylor et al. 1994) he discussed the extent to which democratic regimes ‘make room – or should make room – for recognizing the worth of distinctive cultural traditions’ (Taylor et al. 1994: back cover). In the 1992 book, he outlines two competing traditions, ‘one that protects no particular culture but ensures the rights and welfare of all its citizens, and one that nurtures a particular culture yet also protects the basic rights and welfare of nonconforming citizens’, and opts for a version of the second tradition. However, in the 1994 volume one of the contributors, Steven Rockefeller, raises the crucial question of how a balance can be achieved between particular group identities and national citizenship so that group identities do not dominate the ‘universal identity of democratic citizens’ (Rockefeller 1994: 87-98). Although the politics of recognition based on such single issues as race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality has been normatively challenged by those who wish to defend the primacy of universal citizenship, Bhikhu Parekh notes two reasons why minority ethnic identities remain so powerful. They provide a closer bond for individuals than the nation-state and like professional, religious and other ‘moral communities’ they ensure a wide range of shared interests. The solidarities generated by these minority groups also extend far beyond nation-state boundaries because global migration and transnational networks link migrants to their countries of

Non-governmental influence




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origin. The limited appeal of citizenship based on the nation-state is further compounded by a growing sense of global citizenship and human rights (Parekh 2000, 2008). Hence, for Kymlicka, Taylor and Parekh, group membership is a crucial factor, and they reject the focus by some liberal philosophers and political scientists on the individual. Yet, as Iris Marion Young (1997, 2000) and others have noted, individuals are not confined within separate homogeneous groups. Rather, they maintain multiple, intersecting allegiances which are not ordered within any rigid hierarchy. This ‘intersectional’ approach encourages us to explore the way in which individuals navigate between and across group boundaries and to resist the attractions of groupism, which Brubaker (2004: 2) defines as the ‘tendency to take bounded groups as fundamental units of analysis (and basic constituents of the social world)’. As many academic commentators point out, national and other types of groups are not defined by a particular essence, neither are they fixed entities, but are constructed through multiple processes in which individuals engage with one another in diverse, complex and frequently conflicting ways. It is not just that identities are complex, however. Some critics argue that the politics of identity, which underlies this focus on recognition, unduly emphasises the contemporary role of culture in shaping the forms of power and inequality. Scholars such as Nancy Fraser (2000) have sought a rejuvenation of a politics where social justice involves not only cultural identity and group rights, but also challenges the unequal distribution of economic and political resources amongst ethnic and other social groups. This ‘recognition versus redistribution’ debate (Lash & Featherstone 2002) is fundamental to the examination of multicultural policies because it demands that we consider the articulation of cultural identity with social relations, economic power and political participation.2

Multiculturalism and communitarianism

Political cultures

State multiculturalism was developed in Canada as a response to the impact of global migration on a nation whose political system had been dominated by historic divisions between its Anglophone and Francophone citizens. In the USA, which is popularly seen as the archetypal ‘multicultural’ society, the context was rather different. Identity politics and group rights were deeply influenced by the 1960s Civil Rights Movement and the struggles against racial inequality and thereafter by other forms of singleissue politics around, for example, gender, sexuality and ethnicity. Representatives of various minorities have sought political and legal action at 2

We are grateful for Greg Noble’s communication on the distributionist approach.

Multicultural Models


both federal and state level, encouraging a lively debate about the balance between particular interests and universal citizenship referred to by Stephen Rockefeller above. Indeed, state multiculturalism can be seen as both a response to this grassroots politics and an attempt to draw local activists into conventional political institutions. In academic circles this debate has been strikingly mediated through communitarianism. From the late 1960s Amitai Etzioni played a major role in the development of the communitarian discourse through a voluminous outpouring of theoretical and policy-oriented publications, as well as by leading the Institute for Communitarian Policy Studies at George Washington University and the Communitarian Network. In The Spirit of Community: Rights, Responsibilities and the Communitarian Agenda (1993), he seeks to substantiate his claim that US citizens have become increasingly self-centred and more insistent on their rights as individuals rather than their responsibilities as members of the local and national community. He locates this change within the 1980s and proposes that it should be countered by the development of a set of universal moral values that guide ‘people to what is decent and encourages them to avoid that which is not’ (Etzioni 1993: 24). The national unity of the USA should be based on ‘a set of social virtues, some basic settled values that we as a community endorse and actively affirm’ (ibid.: 25). Etzioni’s writings reflect widespread concern in media and political circles that identity politics and cultural diversity were contributing to a weakening of shared national values. However, in a subsequent publication – The Monochrome Society (2001) – he argued that the USA was far more homogeneous than many commentators claimed. Indeed, ‘it was a grievous error to suggest that because American faces or skin tones may appear more diverse some fifty years from now, most Americans from different social backgrounds will seek to follow a different agenda or hold a different creed than a white majority’ (Etzioni 2001: 6). This widespread concern that cultural diversity in the ‘land of immigration’ was dangerously undermining national unity – with dire predictions by conservatives such as Samuel Huntington that white English-speaking Americans would be outnumbered by others, especially Hispanics – appeared to be empirically supported by Robert Putnam’s Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community (2000). Putnam shares ­Et­zioni’s concern about growing fragmentation, which he sees as beginning earlier, in the 1950s. Americans have ‘become increasingly disconnected from family, friends, neighbors, and our democratic structures’ with the result being diminution of social capital, that is, ‘personal bonds and fellowship’ ( Putnam detects a decline in trust and civic responsibility and associates this with the increasing diversity produced by migration – not just in America but in other ‘advanced countries’ too:

Increasing individualism


John Eade and Paolo Ruspini Ethnic diversity is increasing in most advanced countries, driven mostly by sharp increases in immigration. In the long run immigration and diversity are likely to have important cultural, economic, fiscal, and developmental benefits. In the short run, however, immigration and ethnic diversity tend to reduce social solidarity and social capital. New evidence from the US suggests that in ethnically diverse neighbourhoods residents of all races tend to ‘hunker down’. Trust (even of one’s own race) is lower, altruism and community cooperation rarer, friends fewer (Putnam 2007: 137).


Yet history shows that this social fragmentation can be reversed by generating new forms of social solidarity: In the long run, however, successful immigrant societies have overcome such fragmentation by creating new, cross-cutting forms of social solidarity and more encompassing identities (Putnam 2007: 137).

Communitarianism has been challenged from various sides. Questions have been raised about the methodology Putnam uses to advance his claim concerning social fragmentation (see Schudson 1996; Paxton 1999). Although his central concept of bridging and bonding social capital is widely used to analyse social ties based on religion, ethnicity and virtual communities, its deficiencies have also been exposed (see Portes & Landolt 1996). Furthermore, British sociologist Anthony Giddens, despite being widely described as a communitarian, criticises communitarianism for making community do ‘too much work’: [A nation or a society] is only a community in an elliptical sense... [I]f they become too strong, communities breed identity politics, and with it the potential for social division, or even disintegration. Even in its milder forms, identity politics tends to be exclusivist, and difficult to reconcile with the principles of tolerance and diversity upon which an effective civil society depends (Giddens 2000: 64).

Giddens’ reservations about communitarianism are significant because he acted as a prominent mediator between academic debates and British state multiculturalism. His arguments for a ‘third way’ politics between traditional Left and Right acted as intellectual ballast for the multiculturalist policies pursued by ‘New Labour’ after it came to power in 1997. The government attached particular importance to religious groups or ‘faith communities’ on the grounds that they were united by moral values and strong social capital. However, after ‘9/11’ the engagement of the ‘Muslim community’ with British national values was questioned, and Giddens’ comments about the exclusivism of identity politics expressed a growing unease about

Multicultural Models


state multiculturalism. This unease intensified considerably after the ‘7/7’ terrorist bombings in London in 2005. A year later, in a speech to an invited audience, Tony Blair expressed the government’s desire to balance cultural difference with national values: Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs and other faiths have a perfect right to their own identity and religion, to practice [sic] their faith and to conform to their culture. This is what multicultural, multi-faith Britain is about. That is what is legitimately distinctive. But when it comes to our essential values – belief in democracy, the rule of law, tolerance, equal treatment for all, respect for this country and its shared heritage – then that is where we come together, it is what we hold in common; it is what gives us the right to call ourselves British. At that point no distinctive culture or religion supercedes our duty to be part of an integrated United Kingdom (

In support of this normative model, Tony Blair referred to particular cases relevant to British Muslims – the veiling of women and their exclusion from certain mosques, as well as the knowledge of English among imams recruited from abroad. As far as government funding for minority groups was concerned, in future such funds would be used to ‘promote integration as well as help distinctive cultural identity (Woodward 2006).

Developments across Europe and the backlash against multiculturalism Although British academic and political debates about multiculturalism were influenced by those policies, they were also shaped by what was happening in other European countries. EU equality legislation developed from 2000 on the basis of Article 13 of the Treaty of Amsterdam (1997). Turning points for equality policies and awareness of discrimination in Europe were the EU’s Racial Equality Directive (CEU 2000a) and Employment Equality Directive (CEU 2000b), which covered, respectively, the principle of equal treatment irrespective of race or ethnic origin and establishment of a general framework for equal treatment in employment and occupation. This legislation was novel for most EU countries (except the UK), and its impact was significant in terms of enhancing the rights of third-country nationals and minorities. At the same time the European 3

Link accessed January 2014, though no longer active.

Promoting multiculturalism



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academic and policy debate has acknowledged the existence of a multitude of immigrant integration schemes that are not easily transferable from one country to another (Heckmann & Schnapper 2003; Scholten 2011). More recently, the relevance of different local actors in immigrant integration has been brought to the fore (Caponio & Borkert 2010). However, the impact of EU policymaking on member states has been limited. The EU’s liberal intentions have been countered by a widespread backlash against multiculturalism. This process started as early as 1998 when in Germany the Social Democrats’ ruling coalition sought to change the citizenship law and introduce dual nationality. In Germany, ethnic accommodation had long been seen as part of a policy on ‘foreigners’ (Scholten 2011). Fears that the substantial Turkish minority might gain significant electoral influence through dual nationality fuelled resistance, and the idea of a dual passport was eventually dropped (see Ruspini 2000). In the ensuing years a new debate began, stimulated by the Christian Democrat and Social Christian parties, concerning national identity. They drew on the concept of Leitkultur or ‘dominant culture’, the roots of which date back, according to political exponents, to Germany’s Christian traditions (see Ruspini 2001). Enthusiasm for multicultural policies and practices in West Europe was probably strongest in the Netherlands during the 1970s and 1980s. The Dutch government pursued what Rath (1993) has described as ‘controlled integration’ (Vasta 2006: 5) through a minorities policy that sought to deliver state welfare resources to particular minorities. However, once again official disillusionment with this policy emerged in the early 1990s, and Muslims were subject to political attack. The state moved away from providing for specific minority groups and sought instead to include longestablished migrants within mainstream services through the 1994 Integration Policy. Four years later the focus on integration was further sharpened through legislation seeking ‘to familiarize immigrants with Dutch language, culture and society’ in a highly directive manner (Vasta 2006: 7). These Dutch developments influenced other European countries (Joppke 2004). As part of a more general neoliberal tendency, official policy moved towards emphasising the responsibility of the individual rather than of a particular group to ‘integrate’ within ‘mainstream’ society – a shift which became even more pronounced after the murder of Dutch politician Pim Fortuyn. This move away from state multiculturalism towards ‘civic integration’ was also accompanied by a formal recognition of the deep socioeconomic inequalities that overlapped with ethnic differences (ibid.). Since the early 2000s multicultural practices have been under constant discussion and their real implementation has faced increasing difficulty (Rex 2004). Turkey’s application to join the EU has added to this composite picture, forcing the EU to rethink its identity and its borders (Ruspini 2006). Legislative trends in a number of EU member states indicate that the

Multicultural Models


notion of integration is becoming more restrictive and now focuses mostly on cultural aspects, such as courses for the acquisition of language, history, culture, and civic and social aspects of the receiving country (Carrera 2006). Integration no longer seems to be considered ‘a two-way process’ between migrants and the ‘host society’, as defined in the pivotal European Commission Communication on immigration, integration and employment (CEC 2003). This has led to a widening gap in status between different categories of migrants and host societies. Increasing distinctions have also emerged in access to rights and services between long-term and short-term residents, those who are highly skilled and those less skilled, and European and thirdcountry migrants on the basis of an utilitarian approach supported by the economic and demographic needs of the European polity. A prime focus of this backlash against multiculturalism has been Islam and Muslim identity. National traditions have shaped this preoccupation. France, for example, has attempted to legislate against public expressions of Muslim identity while Britain has adopted a more pragmatic approach. What unites European governments, however, is the desire to centralise Muslim representation by encouraging the development of ‘moderate’ religious and secular elites. This process has also involved the supranational structures of the EU, leading Tariq Modood and Pnina Werbner (1997) to detect the emergence of ‘European multiculturalisms’. They boldly claim that ‘Europe has become a novel experiment in multiple, tiered and mediated multiculturalisms’ (ibid.: vii). According to this view we now have a contradictory situation whereby the backlash against multiculturalism in some countries and institutional arenas coexists with diverse multiculturalisms in other institutional arenas. Modood has continued to place Muslims at the heart of his defence of multiculturalism as both a normative discourse and a complex set of policies and practices. He contends that Muslims need to be included in current debates about ‘democratic citizenship’ through ‘multicultural integration’ (Modood 2007). These debates would involve an engagement between civil society and the state to forge an inclusive ‘institutional secularism’ against the tendency to revive an exclusivist ‘ideological secularism’. He continues to pursue this inclusive project through public debate and research with colleagues across Europe (Triandafyllidou, Modood & Meer 2011). With the expansion of the EU after 2004 the issue of what the accession countries could learn from West European policies and practices raised two key questions: (i) how to choose between different national strategies, for example, between those of France, the Netherlands and Britain, and (ii) whether there really is a novel European experiment in multiculturalism. These questions became even more urgent as countries from the Balkan region sought entry to the EU after bitter regional conflicts. (Croatia joined in July 2013, for example). The EU has followed a highly top-down approach towards accession, and its policies have taken little account of

Islam and Muslims


Over-simplistic model

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local dynamics and the historical displacement of minorities due to the reshaping of borders and ethnic conflicts (Górny & Ruspini 2004). Its visa liberalisation policy, for instance, rests on a modernist idea of citizenship, which is based on stable and fixed identities and fails to acknowledge the Balkans as a heterogeneous, multi-ethnic area composed of multiple and fluid identities. As a result, new dichotomies have been generated, such as included/excluded, inner/outer, and ‘Europeans’/‘non-Europeans’ (Ivic 2010). This top-down approach to the Balkans is also revealed in the attempt by Kymlicka to analyse local processes through the lens of liberal multiculturalism. Kymlicka (2000) begins to explore the applicability of the Western normative model of ethno-cultural diversity management to ethnic conflicts in Eastern and Central Europe. This was followed by a collaborative volume with Magda Opalski (2002) in which he seeks to encourage dialogue about minority group rights and explores, inter alia, how European institutions such as the Council of Europe ‘could play a more constructive role in assisting countries in Eastern Europe to manage their ethnic conflicts in a fair and peaceful manner’ (ibid.: xv). Yet, as Ana Devic shows in her case study of the Serbian province of Vojvodina, his model fails to uncover ‘the ways in which inter-ethnic relations worked on the ground, where supposedly discontents would have been simmering’ (Devic 2002: 48). The application of this model – in this locality at least – would actually encourage rather than discourage conflict since it would promote the transfer of ‘state-majority-nationalist closures to substate levels’ (ibid.: 74). The lesson to be learned from Devic’s grounded knowledge of interethnic relations is that true dialogue must look beyond simplistic and top-down models. Moreover, there should be a non-paternalistic desire to learn from local contexts where inter-ethnic relations are deeply embedded across the whole of Europe. A variety of analytical perspectives have to be devised, in other words, to understand what is happening in the European region, rather than pursuing a single modernist or multiculturalist approach (see Silj 2010). These perspectives have to engage with the complex interweaving of histories and changing processes operating across a variety of interconnected levels (supranational, transnational, national and local) shaped by globalisation, while also learning from a rights-based approach towards racial and ethnic differences. The need for more sophisticated approaches has become even more urgent with the emergence of new patterns of circular and return migration after the expansion of the EU in 2004. Social identities have also been influenced by these processes, as significant numbers of people increasingly feel a sense of ‘belonging’ to more than one country and society. Transnational communities are thus becoming an important way to organise activities, relationships and identity for a growing number of people with affiliations in different European coun-

Multicultural Models


tries. The changed sense of affiliation affects governmental and educational policies as well. Consequently, traditional national models of integration (multicultural, assimilationism and the separation or exclusionist model) no longer fit the changing European landscape.

Moving from multiculturalism towards cosmopolitanism The political backlash against multiculturalism has encouraged academics and other commentators to develop a ‘post-multiculturalist’ discourse that utilises ‘such terms as “the death of multiculturalism” (Kundnani 2002); “farewell to multiculturalism?” (Baubock 2002); “retreat of multiculturalism” (Joppke 2004); “Too Diverse” (Goodhart 2004); [and] “re-inventing multiculturalism” (Uitermark et al. 2005)’ (Wong 2008). Yet it is important to remember that the doubts expressed in this backlash are not new. In 1972 prominent Canadian sociologist John Porter questioned the government’s multiculturalist policy on the grounds that ‘maintaining an interest in ethnicity merely perpetuates ethnic stratification’ (see Berry 1998). This was followed by another Canadian academic, Guy Rocher (1976), who expressed the concern among French Canadians that if multiculturalism led towards multilingualism the protected status of the French language would be undermined. Roger Hewitt (2005) links the recent backlash against multiculturalism not only to this earlier disaffection in Canada but also to criticisms advanced in other Anglophone countries. He explains this widespread reaction in terms of both class and racialised difference through a careful exploration of local urban social and political processes and their links with national and global dynamics. Explanations for the ‘backlash’ have to be sought across time and through an analysis of contemporary political and ideological structures that operate simultaneously at various levels within and beyond the nation-state. This is an approach that parallels Paul Gilroy’s (2005) affirmation of the reality of multicultural societies and convivial relations across racial and ethnic difference. He exhorts us to look beyond the deficiencies of state multiculturalism and the ‘problem’ of cultural diversity to the deeper post-colonial economic and social forces of neoliberal globalisation. In a similar vein Alana Lentin and Gavin Titley (2011: 4) contend that the backlash against multiculturalism actually entails a ‘rejection of lived multiculture’ by neoliberal societies where racism is reshaped rather than eliminated. Rather than modify multicultural analytical models or shift the focus to other, more fundamental forces, some have looked elsewhere to understand the complexity generated by global migration, particularly to the concept of cosmopolitanism. Ulrich Beck has played a key role in this development. He defines cosmopolitanism as a way of dealing with cultural

Emerging concepts



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difference by ‘overcoming the dualities of the global and the local, the national and the international’ (Beck & Grande 2007: 12). Cosmopolitanism ‘rests on the “both/and” principle’ and the reality of blurring boundaries between groups and transnational ‘intermingling at both the national and international levels’ (ibid.: 14). Multiculturalism, in contrast, is grounded in the either/or principle which is ‘geared, first, to... homogeneous groups and, second, locates the latter within the nation-state framework’ (ibid.). Beck calls for a cosmopolitan Europe which looks beyond ‘Fortress Europe’ policies informed by state multiculturalist encouragement of ‘indifference and intolerance towards the presence of refugees, asylum seekers or other “immigrants”’ (ibid.: 187). He joins many other commentators in welcoming the cosmopolitan flux of Europe’s cities where individuals engage with one another to produce ‘cultural hybridity’ or mixtures ‘generated precisely by coexistence and the growing indistinguishability from Europe’s so-called others’ (ibid.).

Cosmopolitanism and multiculturalism in everyday urban conditions The reference to European cities neatly brings us to the final section of this chapter. State multiculturalism in North America and Western Europe has been intimately associated with debates about immigration and the emergence of minority settlements in poor urban localities. Research has focused on urban everyday multiculturalisms and their relationship with state policies and practices primarily within Western European cities (see, e.g., Body-Gendrot 2000; Body-Gendrot & Martiniello 2000; Blockland & Savage 2008; Martiniello & Rath 2010). This empirical analysis has also been accompanied by a growing exploration of everyday cosmopolitanism. The stimulus was again generated by the globalisation debate that emerged during the late 1980s and early 1990s (see Featherstone 1990), but it has also been influenced by Beck’s more recent work. The contrast that Beck makes between cosmopolitanism and multiculturalism was helpfully employed by Kira Kosnick in a volume edited by Nowicka and Rovisco (2009), which seeks to ground the debate in urban empirical analysis. She investigates the ways in which diversity in Berlin has been promoted by political and business interests and how the strategies of these interest groups contrast with the lives of migrants and others in ‘disadvantaged areas’. Yet, while Jon Binnie and colleagues (2006) in another very useful volume which brings together urban research in Britain and Continental Europe, agree with Beck that cosmopolitanism is characterised by an openness to difference, they argue against any assumption that this is ‘simply a matter of the individual choice of free agents’ (ibid.: 10). Cosmopolitanism is socially produced and is engaged with oth-

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er ‘identities and power relations’ involving gender, sexuality, generation, class and the nation-state (2008: 8). As Pécoud (2004: 16) notes in his study of German-Turkish entrepreneurs in Berlin: Business is a concrete activity that requires actual skills, and in this respect, cosmopolitan competences are essential to business success. This implies that cosmopolitanism is not always a matter of entrepreneurs’ will or pleasure.

Annemarie Bodaar demonstrates in her analysis of the revitalisation of Amsterdam’s Bijlmeer district that the state is capable not only of manipulating the discourse on multiculturalism ‘to manage increasing difference’ in this urban locality, it also joins business interests in promoting a cosmopolitan discourse to market these ‘multicultural neighbourhoods’ (Bodaar 2008: 172). These external strategies are ‘contested on the ground by society when implemented in neighbourhoods’ (ibid.), but once again, the binary between multiculturalism and cosmopolitanism fails to explain local resistance. Bodaar argues instead that cosmopolitanism ‘can also be lived by and promoted by residents of multicultural neighbourhoods in their everyday lives both locally and through their connectedness to transnational networks’ (ibid.). Both multicultural and cosmopolitan discourses are employed by residents and state actors in the politics of local urban space. The field of tension between cosmopolitanism and multiculturalism is most clearly evident in current debates about ‘diversity’. The use of this concept, particularly for local policies of integration, epitomises the emergence of a more neoliberal pluralist politics. ‘Diversity’ focuses on the individual and recognises multiple forms of identification. In contrast to a multicultural politics, diversity does not approach difference at the level of the collective but rather at the individual level, and it replaces claims for equality with a policy of managerialist ‘fair play’. However, in research on the implementation of diversity policies in Amsterdam, Antwerp and Leeds, Maria Schiller (2013) finds that such policies ultimately result in a contradictory politics that tries to combine elements of different policies but fails to transcend the inherent contradictions between a cosmopolitan and a multicultural approach. These and other urban studies reveal the ways in which normative discussions of cosmopolitanism and multiculturalism fail to convey the greater complexity of everyday processes and lived experience. In the case of settlement by those who have migrated from Muslim-majority countries recent research in West European cities has underscored the overlaps between Muslims and non-Muslims in everyday life. Against political and media stereotypes of segregation and parallel lives in urban areas where Muslims have settled in large numbers, a recent survey of eleven West European cities once again confirms the more complex situation of everyday

What is “diversity”?


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life (Open Society Institute 2011). Its results indicate that ‘a sense of shared values is not as necessary for people from different backgrounds as trust and a willingness to help neighbours’ (ibid.: 22). In other words, despite the perceived difficulties associated with living in ethnically diverse European cities, there is still sufficient conviviality and everyday tolerance of difference to challenge stereotypes and political moves towards the assimilation of minorities (see Open Society Institute 2011; Eurofound 2011). As the descendants of migrants move away from ethnic enclaves into white majority neighbourhoods not only in the suburbs but far beyond urban inner areas, this coexistence will be tested in new socio-economic conditions (see, e.g., the British research on this process by Gale & Naylor 2002; Kasinitz, Mollenkopf & Waters 2004; Foner 2007; Millington 2011; Eade 2011; Shah, Dwyer & Gilbert 2012).

Conclusion This chapter explored a variety of multiculturalisms in the context of specific regions across the globe, especially North America and Europe. The exploration began with a consideration of the normative approach towards state multiculturalism articulated by political philosophers and political scientists. It then outlined the debate around the ‘multicultural backlash’ and the cosmopolitan alternative. While transnational flows play a key role, nation-state institutions, histories and different policy solutions clearly influence these multiple forms of multiculturalism and cosmopolitanism. The academic models used to analyse these processes in Europe are gradually being extended beyond a very narrow Western base. This development has been encouraged by EU funding, leading to recent discussions of European multicultural models and ‘European multiculturalisms’. However, the normative approach informed by political theory has to be balanced by careful empirical research of everyday multicultural and cosmopolitan discourses and practices where national and local histories still play an important role. Furthermore, while a considerable body of knowledge has been generated about what is happening in specific national and local contexts, we are clearly a long way from really understanding what is going on across the European region generally and how developments here relate to the wider global context of cultural diversity.

Acknowledgements We are very grateful for the comments received from Kerstin Duemmler, Marco Martiniello, Gareth Millington, Greg Noble, Jan Rath, Maria Schiller and the anonymous reviewer.

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References Beck, U. & E. Grande (2007), Cosmopolitan Europe. Cambridge: Polity Press. Berry, J. (1998), ‘Social psychological costs and benefits of multiculturalism: A view from Canada’, Trames 3 (2): 209-233. Binnie, J., J. Holloway, S. Millington & C. Young (eds) (2006), Cosmopolitan Urbanism. London and New York: Routledge. Blockland, T. & M. Savage (eds) (2008), Networked Urbanism: Social Capital in the City. Aldershot: Ashgate. Bodaar, A. (2008), Cities and the ‘Multicultural State’: Immigration, Multi-Ethnic Neighborhoods, and the Socio-Spatial Negotiation of Policy in the Netherlands. PhD dissertation, Ohio State University. Body-Gendrot, S. (2000), The Social Control of Cities. Oxford: Blackwell. Body-Gendrot, S. & M. Martiniello (eds) (2000), Minorities in European Cities: The Dynamics of Social Integration and Social Exclusion at the Neighbourhood Level. Basingstoke: Macmillan/St Martin’s Press. Brubaker, R. (2004), Ethnicity without Groups. Cambridge and London: Harvard University Press. Caponio, T. & M. Borkert (eds) (2010), The Local Dimension of Migration Policymaking. IMISCOE Reports. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Carrera, S. (2006), ‘A comparison of integration programmes in the EU: Trends and weaknesses’, Challenge Papers No. 1. Brussels: Centre for European Policy Studies. Castles, S., M. Kalantzis, B. Cope & M. Morrissey (1988), Mistaken Identity: Multiculturalism and the Demise of Nationalism in Australia. Sydney: Pluto Press. CEC (2003), Communication from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on Immigration, Integration and Employment. COM 336, Final, 3 June 2003. Brussels: Commission of the European Communities. CEU (Council of the European Union) (2000a), ‘Council Directive 2000/43/EC of 29 June 2000 implementing the principle of equal treatment between persons irrespective of racial or ethnic origin’, Official Journal of the European Communities 180 (19 July): 22-26. CEU (2000b), ‘Council Directive 2000/78/EC of 27 November 2000 establishing a general framework for equal treatment in employment and occupation’, Official Journal of the European Communities 303 (2 December): 16-22. Devic, A. (2002), ‘Nationalism, regional multiculturalism and democracy in the province of Vojvodina, Serbia’s “multiethnic haven”’, in European Integration and South Eastern Europe. Bonn: Center for European Integration Studies, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universitaet Bonn, 42-75. Eade, J. (2011), ‘From race to religion: Multiculturalism and contested space’, in J. Beaumont & C. Baker (eds), Postsecular Cities: Space, Theory and Practice. London & New York: Continuum, 154-167. Etzioni, A. (1993), The Spirit of Community: Rights, Responsibilities, and the Communitarian Agenda. New York: Crown Publishers.


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Etzioni, A. (2001), The Monochrome Society. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Eurofound (2011), Quality of Life in Ethnically Diverse Neighbourhoods. Dublin: European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions. Featherstone, M. (ed.) (1990), Global Culture. London: Sage. Foner, N. (2007), ‘How exceptional is New York? Migration and multiculturalism in the empire city’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 30 (6): 999-1023. Fraser, N. (2000), ‘Rethinking recognition’, New Left Review 3: 107-120. Gale, R. & S. Naylor (2002), ‘Religion, planning and the city: The spatial politics of ethnic minority expression in British cities and towns’, Ethnicities 2 (3): 387409. Giddens, A. (2000), The Third Way and Its Critics. Cambridge: Polity Press/Oxford and Malden: Blackwell. Gilroy, P. (2005), Postcolonial Melancholia. The Wellek Library Series. New York: Columbia University Press. Goodhart, D. (2004), ‘Too diverse?’, Prospect 95 (20 February): 30-37. Górny, A. & P. Ruspini (2004), ‘Forging a common immigration policy for the enlarging European Union: For diversity of harmonization’, in A. Górny & P. Ruspini (eds), Migration in the New Europe: East-West Revisited, 247-277. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Hage, G. (1998), White Nation: Fantasies of White Supremacy in a Multicultural Society. Sydney: Pluto Press. Heckmann, F. & D. Schnapper (eds) (2003), The Integration of Immigrants in European Societies: National Differences and Trends of Convergence. Stuttgart: Lucis and Lucius. Hewitt, R. (2005), White Backlash and the Politics of Multiculturalism. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press. Ivic, S. (2010), ‘The EU visa liberalisation process for western Balkan countries as a reflection of the politics of modernity’, The Romanian Journal of European Studies, 7-8: 121-128. Joppke, C. (2004), ‘The retreat of multiculturalism in the liberal state: Theory and policy’, British Journal of Sociology 55 (2): 237-257. Kasinitz, P., J. H. Mollenkopf & M. C. Waters (2004), Becoming New Yorkers. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Kosnick, K. (2009), ‘Cosmopolitan capital or multicultural community? Reflections on the production and management of differential mobilities in Germany’s capital city’, in: M. Nowicka & M. Rovisco (eds), Cosmopolitanism in Practice. Aldershot and Burlington: Ashgate, 161-180. Kundnani, A. (2002), ‘The death of multiculturalism’, Institute of Race Relations,, accessed 28 July 2011. Kymlicka, W. (2000), ‘Nation-building and minority rights: Comparing West and East’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 26 (2): 183-212. Kymlicka, W. (2007), Multicultural Odysseys: Navigating the New International Politics of Diversity. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press.

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Kymlicka, W. & M. Opalski (eds) (2002) Can Liberal Pluralism Be exported? Western Political Theory and Ethnic Relations in Eastern Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Lash, S. & Featherstone, M. (eds) (2002), Recognition and Difference. London: Sage. Lentin, A. & G. Titley (2011), The Crises of Multiculturalism: Racism in a Neoliberal Age. London and New York: Zed Books. Martiniello, M. & J. Rath (eds) (2010), Selected Studies in International Migration and Immigrant Incorporation. IMISCOE Textbooks. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Millington, G. (2011), ‘Race’, Culture and the Right to the City: Centres, Peripheries, Margins. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Modood, T. (2007), Multiculturalism: A Civic Idea. Cambridge and Malden: Polity. Modood, T. & P. Werbner (1997), The Politics of Multiculturalism in the New Europe. London: Zed Books. Open Society Institute (2011), Muslims in Europe: A Report on Eleven EU Cities. New York, London, Budapest: Open Society Institute. Paxton, P. (1999), ‘Is social capital declining in the United States?’, American Journal of Sociology 105: 88-127. Parekh, B. (2000), Rethinking Multiculturalism: Cultural Diversity and Political Theory. Basingstoke: Macmillan. Parekh, B. (2008), A New Politics of Identity: Political Principles for an Interdependent World. Basingstoke: Macmillan. Pécoud, A. (2004), ‘Entrepreneurship and identity: Cosmopolitanism and cultural competences among German-Turkish businesspeople in Berlin’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Relations 30: 3-20. Portes, A. & P. Landolt (1996), ‘The downside of social capital’, The American Prospect 26 (94): 18-21. Putnam, R. (2000), Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community. New York, London, Toronto, Sydney, Singapore: Simon & Schuster. Putnam, R. (2007), ‘E pluribus unum: Diversity and community in the twenty-first century’, Scandinavian Political Studies 30 (2): 137-174. Rath, J. (1993), ‘The ideological representation of migrant workers in Europe: A matter of racialisation?’, in: J. Wrench & J. Solomos (eds), Racism and Migration in Western Europe. Oxford and Providence: Berg, 215-232. Rex, J. (2004), ‘Multiculturalism and political integration in modern nation states’, in A. Górny & P. Ruspini (eds), Migration in the New Europe: East-West Revisited. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Rocher, G. (1976), ‘Multiculturalism: The doubts of a francophone’. Paper presented at the Second Canadian Conference on Multiculturalism, Ottawa, February. Rockefeller, S. (1994) ‘Comment’, in C. Taylor, K. A. Appiah, J. Habermas, S. C. Rockefeller, M. Walzer, S. Wolf. & A. Gutmann (eds), Multiculturalism: Examining the Politics of Recognition. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 87-98. Ruspini, P. (2000), ‘I paesi dell’Unione Europea’, in Fondazione Cariplo, Quinto Rapporto sulle Migrazioni 1999. Milano: Franco Angeli, 213-219.


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Ruspini, P. (2001), ‘I paesi dell’Unione Europea’, in Fondazione Cariplo, Sesto Rapporto sulle Migrazioni 2000. Milano: Franco Angeli, 225-233. Ruspini, P. (2006), ‘Allargamento Europeo e identità Europea’, in Fondazione Cariplo, Undicesimo Rapporto sulle Migrazioni 2005. Milano: Franco Angeli, 389399. Schiller, M. (2013) ‘A post-multicultural era: Implementing diversity policy in Amsterdam, Antwerp and Leeds’, unpublished PhD thesis, University of Kent. Scholten, P. (2011), Framing Immigrant Integration: Dutch Research-Policy Dialogues in Comparative Perspective. IMISCOE Research. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Schudson, M. (1996), ‘What if civic life didn’t die?’, The American Prospect (March): 17-28. Shah, B., C. Dwyer & D. Gilbert (2012), ‘Landscapes of diasporic religious belonging in the edge-city: The Jain temple at Potters Bar, Outer London’, South Asian Diasporas 4 (1): 77-94. Silj, A. (ed.) (2010), European multiculturalism revisited. London and New York: Zed Books. Taylor, C. (1992), Multiculturalism and the Politics of Recognition. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Taylor, C., K. A. Appiah, J. Habermas, S. C. Rockefeller, M. Walzer, S. Wolf & A. Gutmann (1994), Multiculturalism: Examining the Politics of Recognition. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Triandafyllidou, A., T. Modood & N. Meer (2011), European Multiculturalisms: Cultural, Religious and Ethnic Challenges. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Uitermark, J., U. Rossi & H. van Houtum (2005), ‘Reinventing multiculturalism: Urban citizenship and the negotiation of ethnic diversity in Amsterdam’, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 29 (3): 622-640. Vasta, E. (2006) From Ethnic Minorities to Ethnic Majority Policy: Changing Identities and the Shift to Assimilationism in the Netherlands. Centre on Migration, Policy and Society Working Paper No. 26. Oxford: University of Oxford. Wong, L. (2008) ‘Multiculturalism and ethnic pluralism in sociology: An analysis of the fragmentation position discourse’, Canadian Ethnic Studies Journal 40 (1): 11-32. Woodward, W. (2006), ‘Radical Muslims must integrate, says Blair’, The Guardian, 9 December 2006. Available at religion.immigrationandpublicservices. Young, I. (1997), Intersecting Voices: Dilemmas of Gender, Political Philosophy, and Policy. Princeton: Princeton University Press Young, I. (2000), Inclusion and Democracy. Oxford Political Theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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Key reading Beck, U. & E. Grande (2007), Cosmopolitan Europe. Cambridge: Polity Press. Kymlicka, W. (2007), Multicultural Odysseys: Navigating the New International Politics of Diversity. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press. Modood, T. (2007), Multiculturalism: A Civic Idea. Cambridge and Malden: Polity. Parekh, B. (2000), Rethinking Multiculturalism: Cultural Diversity and Political Theory. Basingstoke: Macmillan. Taylor, C. (1992), Multiculturalism and the Politics of Recognition. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

About the authors John Eade is a professor of sociology and anthropology at the University of Roehampton and visiting professor at the Migration Research Unit of University College London. He was formerly executive director of the Centre for Research on Nationalism, Ethnicity and Multiculturalism at the University of Surrey. Eade’s main research interests are urban ethnicity and the global city, travel and pilgrimage, and Bangladeshi identity politics. His publications include the single-authored Placing London (2000) and The Politics of Community (1989), the co-edited Accession and Migration (2009), Transnational Ties (2008), Reframing Pilgrimage (2004), Understanding the City (2002), Divided Europeans (1999), Contesting the Sacred (1991), and the single-edited Living the Global City (1997). Paolo Ruspini is a senior researcher at the University of Lugano (USI), Switzerland. A political scientist, he has been researching issues of international and European migration and integration since 1997 using a comparative approach and drawing on policy and qualitative analyses. His publicatioms include the co-edited Migration in the New Europe: EastWest Revisited (2004), Prostitution and Human Trafficking: Focus on Clients (2009), and the single-edited South-Eastern Europe and the European Migration System. He served as guest editor for East-West Mobility in Flux (2010, special issue of The Romanian Journal of European Studies) and has authored and edited a variety of other publications on migration.

5  Race, Racism and Class Evolving Paradigms and Perspectives John Solomos

Summary This chapter focuses on the emergence and development of research on race, racism and class over the past four decades. It draws in particular on debates that have developed in the UK over this period, specifically those shaped by radical and neo-Marxist theorising in this field. From this starting point, the chapter explores the evolution of key areas of research and analysis, focusing on the linkages between academic discourses and broader trends in society and politics. This leads into a discussion of the implications of past debates and controversies for the research agendas that need to be addressed at the beginning of this century: at a time when we are seeing the emergence of new social and economic realities in relation to immigration and race relations. Keywords: class, multiculturalism, race, race relations, racism

Introduction The unprecedented expansion of race and ethnic studies as a field of scholarly analysis, empirical research and policy engagement has been one of the most prominent developments in the social sciences and humanities over the past four decades. As late as the 1960s and 1970s, these subjects were seen as a relatively marginal area of scholarship and research. Yet in the years since we have seen a rapid growth in research outputs in this area, including books of various kinds, articles in specialised and mainstream journals, and commissioned research reports for governmental and other agencies (Bulmer & Solomos 2004; Collins & Solomos 2010). This trend has perhaps been most noticeable in sociology as a discipline, though there has also been a significant expansion of research in other social science and humanities subjects over the same period. This rapid expansion has been linked to developments both within and outside of academia, and can be understood partly in terms of the continuing significance of questions

Growing significance


Conceptual framework

John Solomos

about race and racism within the context of political culture and civil society in many places around the globe (Cornell & Hartmann 2007; Kivisto & Croll 2012). During this period we saw the emergence of a range of conceptual paradigms seeking to shape research agendas on race and racism. These have ranged from radical neo-Marxist theories to theories influenced by the work of classical sociologists such as Max Weber (Balibar & Wallerstein 1991; Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies 1982; Miles 1982; Rex & Mason 1986). The conceptual frames that evolved out of this period of intense debate and from the growing bodies of empirical research remain influential in contemporary scholarly research. In addition to these conceptual shifts, however, the past few decades have seen a rapid globalisation of research on race and racism, far beyond the historical origins of this field. The study of race and racism has its origins in the sociological and anthropological traditions of US and British academic disciplines. But it now has a presence in various parts of the globe, including many countries outside of the West. This process of globalisation is producing bodies of scholarly research that take us beyond the confines of the global North (Bowser 1995; Telles 2004; Winant 2001). The result of the twin processes of expansion and globalisation has been the greatest transformation of scholarship on race and racism since the early research initiated in the USA in the 1920s and 1930s. No longer is the study of race, ethnicity and race relations a relatively specialised niche of sociological and historical research. Nowadays it plays an important role in a range of social science and humanities disciplines, as well as in interdisciplinary research. This is evident in the increasing number and range of theoretical and empirical books published, the rising number and range of journals, and the expansion of both scholarly and policy-related research in this area (Back & Solomos 2009; Goldberg & Solomos 2002). Perhaps more importantly in terms of the future of this subfield, a growing number of academic staff specialised in this area have been appointed within departments of sociology, political science, anthropology, media and communication and related fields. From whichever angle one looks at this changing field today there is evidence that it has become an established part of the social sciences, even if this evolution is somewhat uneven across various disciplines. For instance, it is certainly more the case in sociology, human geography, and anthropology than in economics or political science (Collins & Solomos 2010; Garner 2009; Law 2010). Yet it is also the case that in a growing number of disciplines and also in interdisciplinary work, questions about race and racism have taken on a more important role in influencing research agendas and scholarship. Given the reality of rapid change and expansion in this field over the past four decades it seems appropriate to look back and try to situate the

Race, Racism and Class


key reasons for the changes and delineate their impact on the way we study questions about race, racism and ethnic relations today. This is in a broad sense what the various chapters in this collection seek to do, each in its own specific field of scholarship. This chapter’s overarching aim is more focused in the sense that its main concern is to situate some of the key shifts that we have seen in research on race, racism and class over the past four decades. The chapter draws, in particular, on debates about these issues that have developed in the UK over this period, partly because it is in the UK context that the most intense debates have taken place. This is not to say that similar debates have not developed within other national traditions, since it is clear that they have (Martiniello & Rath 2010; Rath 1993). Within the context of this collection as a whole, however, this chapter’s focus on the UK is balanced by the emphases of other chapters on other national scholarly traditions. Part of this chapter’s focus is inevitably on debates that have been shaped by radical and neo-Marxist theorising in this field, particularly in the 1980s and 1990s. Nonetheless, the issues touched upon in this chapter have a much wider resonance, as they link up with trends and debates in the comparative analysis of race and racism at the start of the twenty-first century. From this starting point we shall look at the evolution of key areas of research and analysis, focusing on the linkages between the evolution of academic discourses and broader trends in social and political debates. This, in turn, leads us into a discussion of the implications of the debates and controversies that we have seen over the past four decades for the research agendas that we need to address at the beginning of this century. Thus, this chapter as a whole focuses on the evolution of debates on race, racism and class from the 1980s onwards. But first we want to situate the contemporary trends and developments within a broader historical context.

Evolving theories and perspectives The study of race and ethnic relations as a social phenomenon can be traced back to the beginning of the twentieth century, and the work of classic sociologists such as W. E. B. du Bois, Robert Park and E. Franklin Frazier (Du Bois 1989, 1996; Frazier 1947, 1968; Park 1950). These scholars were concerned with the broad contours of the race question in the USA and with the evolution of specific forms of race relations that had become an intrinsic facet of US society by the beginning of the twentieth century. Though much of their work was focused on the situation in the USA, it was not exclusively so. The work of Park would exercise a degree of influence on future generations of sociologists, particularly his emphasis on seeing race relations from a sociological perspective. Frazier picks up on this point in an overview of sociological theory and race relations that he

Neo-Marxist theory


Marginal subject

John Solomos

wrote for the American Sociological Review in 1947. Frazier (1947: 269) argues that ‘for Park the phenomenon of race relations is to be studied within his general sociological frame of reference – competition, conflict, accommodation, and assimilation’. In the aftermath of these classic studies, a number of approaches to the sociological study of race and ethnicity started to take shape in the period both before and after the Second World War. This is not the place to retrace that history or to evaluate the impact of these approaches, since our focus here is on the past four decades rather on the historical background to the growth of this field of research. It is worth emphasising, however, that there is a wealth of research and theoretical reflection about race and ethnicity that forms the backdrop to some extent of the recent controversies that are the concern of this chapter (Collins 2007; Stanfield 1993; Stanfield and Dennis 1993; Winant 2007). Yet it is also clear that even in the US tradition, the study of race, racism and ethnicity long remained a relatively marginal subfield of scholarship and did not yet exercise much influence on other disciplines. It was only in the 1950s and 1960s in the aftermath of the Civil Rights Movement and the student unrest and race riots that the study of race and racism became an important field of research in American sociology and anthropology, as well as in other disciplines (Blauner 2002; Bonilla-Silva 1997; Omi and Winant 1994). Outside of the USA, the study of race and racism remained very much in an embryonic stage until the 1970s and 1980s. This was partly, as some scholars point out, because the concept of race was seen in some ways as inflected by the experiences of Anglo-Saxon countries and perhaps less applicable to the study of migrants and ethnic minorities in the countries of Continental Europe (Rath 1993). It was also the product of the specific ways that scholars in Continental Europe engaged with the study of race and racism as social phenomena (Guillaumin 1980; Martiniello 2003; Wieviorka 1995). Some of this engagement involved a critical reappraisal of the core ideas about race that had emerged from the US sociological traditions. But there was also the emergence of somewhat distinct traditions in the study of race and racism, framed by specific experiences of colonialism, migration, and minority formation in the context of post-1945 Europe. There were some notable interventions by scholars outside of the American tradition. In the UK, for example, the influential work of Michael Banton and John Rex helped to establish the sociological study of race and ethnicity within British sociology during the 1960s and 1970s (Banton 2001; Small & Solomos 2006). Much of the early work of scholars such as these was influenced by the approaches adopted from American sociologists and anthropologists, although they addressed questions about immigration, patterns of migrant settlement, and community relations that were more characteristic of the situation in post-1945 Britain and other European societies. Banton (1955, 1959), for example, studied in detail patterns of mi-

Race, Racism and Class


nority community formation in cities such as London. In the 1960s and 1970s, Rex and his collaborators examined the emergence of race relations in the inner city of Birmingham (Rex & Moore 1967; Rex & Tomlinson 1979). A particular concern of Rex in these studies was the relationship between race and class in the formation of relations between newly-arrived migrant communities and the traditional white working-class communities of inner city Birmingham. Two interlinked processes can be seen as bringing about the rapid expansion of research on race and ethnicity in the period since the 1980s, both in the USA and in other national scholarly traditions. First, the 1980s and 1990s saw the emergence of new critical research agendas shaped by Marxist and neo-Marxist approaches to the study of race and racism. Second, there was a noticeable globalisation of research agendas in this field of scholarship, a process that is still very much in progress. It is to these trends that we now turn.

New critical approaches to race, racism and class The first process – emergence of new critical research agendas shaped by Marxist and neo-Marxist approaches to the study of race and racism – became evident in the early 1980s. A good example is be found in the work of scholars such as Robert Miles in British sociology and the work of Howard Winant and Michael Omi in the USA (Miles 1982, 1984; Omi & Winant 1987). It was in this context that highly politicised academic and public debates about the role of sociological analysis in the study of race and racism in contemporary societies became part of the intellectual climate of this period (Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies 1982; Miles 1984; Rex 1981; Solomos 1986). The growth of new radical paradigms helped to politicise the study of race and ethnic relations in a number of ways and led during the 1980s and 1990s to attempts to give voice to minority, black feminist and post-colonial theorising in this field. This is not to say that there was necessarily agreement between the various radical schools of thought that emerged in academic and public discourses during these decades. Indeed, this period was marked by intense debate about issues such as the relationship between race and class, the relevance of Marxist theory to the analysis of race and ethnicity, and the intersections between race, class and gender. Many of these topics remain important areas of debate today. The rapid expansion of the field of race and ethnic studies also reflected the emerging academic interest in interdisciplinary research. Interdisciplinary initiatives have enabled scholars of race and ethnicity to draw upon knowledge bases and theoretical traditions both from pre-existing academic disciplines, such as sociology, political science, history and anthropology, as well as from interdisciplinary areas such as women’s studies,

Race and class



John Solomos

cultural studies, post-colonial studies, queer theory and similar areas of inquiry. This changing intellectual context has infused a new vitality into the field. It is worth noting in this regard that when the journal Ethnic and Racial Studies was founded by John Stone in 1978 it rapidly became the main international journal, publishing cutting-edge research in this growing filed from a range of disciplines and theoretical traditions. Other journals established in this field in the ensuing decades have adopted a similar interdisciplinary stance to varying degrees.

Globalisation of research agendas The second process that helps us to make sense of the rapid expansion of this field of social research can be defined as the globalisation of questions about race, ethnicity, racism and migration. From being largely the preserve of scholars in North America and a limited number of other countries the study of race and ethnicity has become a much more global phenomenon today. Issues of race and ethnicity are also now an important part of public policy debates in a wide range of national and regional contexts. This is the case, for example, in a number of European societies where immigration and the formation of racialised minority communities has changed the fabric of their domestic national identity. Along slightly different lines are the issues of ethnic conflict confronting post-colonial nation-states in Asia and Africa. In the UK, for example, there has been both a growing awareness of Britain as an ever more complex multicultural society and intense public debate about issues such as immigration, race relations policies and the changing boundaries of Britishness and national identity (Cohen 1994; Favell 2001b). Events such as urban riots, new patterns of migration and minority formation, and public tensions about religious and cultural diversity have all played a role in influencing new scholarship and public debate. More importantly, it has become clear that in quite diverse parts of the world questions about race and ethnic relations have become integral to research agendas beyond the historical boundaries of this field of scholarship and research. In this sense, the study of race and ethnicity, as Rex (1979a) among others notes, has tended from its origin to be shaped both by processes internal to the academic environment and by wider social and political processes. Part of the context of the rapid expansion of race and ethnic studies during the past four decades lies in the changing global contours of racial and ethnic organisation, as well as in the significance of these changes for policy and practice. It is not surprising, as a result, that a substantial role in shaping research agendas over the years has been played by government departments, research councils, NGOs and charitable foundations. They have sought to fund research that could help to shape policies about issues

Race, Racism and Class


such as immigration, social and community integration, multiculturalism and racial inequality (Ireland 1994; McGhee 2009). More recently the rapid expansion of research funding linked to issues such as religious diversity and terrorism provides yet another example of the politicised nature of research in this field (Bradley 2009; Juergensmeyer 2008). These processes have at least partially helped to frame the study of race and ethnicity as an increasingly globalised social phenomenon. In this respect, it is necessary to reflect on whether the historical frameworks that have dominated the field of race and ethnic studies so far remain adequate for understanding the types of phenomena that the field is likely to encounter in the coming decades. Part of this process of reflection and critique needs to explore how the field might move beyond much-needed internal critique to craft new questions, areas of investigation, paradigms, theories and methodologies that are adequate to the contemporary situation. A recurrent theme in the scholarship of the first decades of the twenty-first century is the ways in which the field of race and ethnic studies can begin to address the concerns raised by contemporary global social realities (Collins & Solomos 2010; Essed & Goldberg 2002; Goldberg & Solomos 2002). Debates about the meaning of racial and ethnic terminology, the field’s emphasis on selected social institutions and relative neglect of others, its emphasis on Western societies, and similar preoccupations of the field, reflect its origins in the nineteenth- and twentieth-century racial formations of slavery, colonialism and imperialism. This history has shaped the questions, content, paradigms, theories and methodologies of the field. It is important to ask, however, whether we should broaden the frame of reference to bring on board issues that are raised by other historical experiences and by different theoretical frames.

Race, racism and social relations A key area of debate that has emerged as a result of the trends outlined above is the analytical relationship between race, racism and ethnicity and wider social and economic structures. In some contexts this has been framed more narrowly around the issue of the relationship between race and class. Whether from a neo-Marxist or Weberian perspective, the relationship between race and class is a recurring theme in sociological analysis, as reflected in the work of Robert Miles and John Rex among other scholars (Miles & Brown 2003; Rex 1981). Preoccupation during the past decade with the phenomenon of ‘white working-class racism’ can be taken as an example of the enduring influence of these concerns in the current social and political environment. Seeking to understand these phenomena means being clear about what is subsumed under terms such as race and racism. One key question that

Going global



John Solomos

has shaped contemporary discussions is the following: How has the category of race come to play such an important role in moulding contemporary social relations? This is not to say that there is agreement about how best to answer this question. On the contrary, scholars and researchers show little sign of agreeing even about the meaning of notions such as race, racism, ethnicity and related social categories (Winant 2006). Many of the questions raised in these debates raise doubts on whether race is a suitable category for social analysis. What do we mean when we talk of race, racism or ethnicity as shaping the structure of particular societies? What role have race and ethnicity played in different historical contexts? Is it possible to speak of racism in the singular, or should “racisms” always be in the plural? These questions are at the heart of many of the theoretical and conceptual debates that dominate current research agendas. Yet, what is interesting about much of the literature about race and racism is the absence of commonly-agreed conceptual tools and even agreement about the general parameters of race, ethnicity and racism as fields of study. Notions such as race and ethnicity, for example, are often used in conjunction or in parallel to refer to social groups that differ, in the case of race, in terms of the physical attributes accorded social significance or, in the case of ethnicity, in terms of language, culture, place of origin or common membership of a descent group without distinguishing physical characteristics. Yet there is no equivalent term to racism in relation to ethnicity. Racism as a concept is much more closely tied to the concept of race, and is a reminder that where members of society make distinctions between different racial groups, at least some members of that society are likely to behave in ways which give rise to racism as a behavioural and ideational consequence of making racial distinctions in the first place. Unfortunately the opposite does not hold. A society which denied or did not formally acknowledge the existence of different racial groups would not necessarily thus rid itself of racism. Indeed the recent literature on racial and ethnic classification in censuses, surveys and administrative records shows that the identification of members of a society in terms of racial, ethnic or national origin may be a prerequisite to taking action to counteract racism (Morning 2008; Nobles 2000). The explosion of scholarship and research since the 1980s has highlighted a certain lack of consensus while also leading to intense debate about the very language that we use in talking about race and racism. Over the past decade or so the shifting boundaries of race and ethnicity as categories of social analysis have become ever more evident. In particular there has been a plethora of studies that provide new perspectives on difference, identities, subjectivities and power relations. It is in this environment that ideas about race, racism and ethnicity have become the subject of intense debate and controversy. The role of racial and ethnic categorisation in the construction of social and political identities has been highlighted in a

Race, Racism and Class


number of recent conflicts (Back et al. 2009; Keith 2005). Yet, paradoxically, there is still much confusion about what we mean by such notions, as evidenced by the range of terminological debates that have dominated discussion in recent years. A number of questions remain to be analysed: What factors explain the mobilising power of ideas about race and ethnicity in contemporary societies? What counter values and ideas can be developed to undermine the appeal of racist ideas and movements? Is it possible for communities that are socially defined by differences of race, ethnicity, religion or other signifiers to live together in societies able to ensure equality, justice and civilised tolerance? Aspects of these questions have been addressed in research over the past four decades, but there is some way to go before we can claim to have provided rounded responses to them. There is a need for research that can begin to unpick some of the core analytical frames that underlie these questions. Such research needs to be both conceptual and, at the same time, focused on specific empirical situations.

Comparative perspectives on race, racism and class There is by now a rich body of historical work which has analysed the ways in which ideas about race have taken shape in specific societal and political environments. But much of the contemporary social science literature on race and racism remains somewhat national in focus (Faist 2010; Wimmer & Glick Schiller 2003). This has resulted in a lack of historical reflexivity on the emergence of modern racism and a failure to come to terms with the transformations of racial ideologies and practices over time and space. Yet it is also clear that without an understanding of the historical context, we are unlikely to be able to come to full terms with the question of how racial ideas have arisen from and become integral to specific societies. Part of the complexity of analysing the historical impact of racism is that it is often intertwined with other social phenomena. Indeed, it can only be fully understood if we are able to see how it works in specific social settings. One interesting example of this process can be found in the reliance of modern racial and nationalist ideologies on a complex variety of images of race, sexuality and nationhood. Such images often emphasise questions about identity, in relation to both majority and minority communities. Because race and ethnicity are intrinsically forms of collective social identity, the subject of identity has been at the heart of both historical and contemporary discussions about them (Brubaker 2004; Calhoun 2007). Identity has become an important theme in contemporary European discussions about migrant communities, Muslim communities, refugee communities and other groups that are seen as somehow not fully part of a ‘European’ identity (Bellamy, Castiglione & Shaw 2006; Goldberg 2006).



Identity and agency

John Solomos

The preoccupation with identity can be taken as one outcome of concerns about where minorities actually belong in societies such as our own. At a basic level, after all, identity is about belonging, about what we have in common with some people and what differentiates us from others. Identity gives one a sense of personal location, and it provides a stable core of one’s individuality; but it is also about one’s social relationships, one’s complex involvement with others, and these have become even more complex and confusing in the modern world. Each of us lives with a variety of potentially contradictory identities, which battle within us for allegiance: as men or women, black or white, straight or gay, able-bodied or disabled (Wetherell 2009a, 2009b). The list is potentially infinite, and so too therefore are our possible belongings. Which of them we focus on, bring to the fore and identify with depends on a host of factors. At the centre, however, are the values we share or wish to share with others. The fictive and tacit nature of these identities is often taken for granted, but the power of their appeal as a social and political force is evident in contemporary mobilisations in different parts of the globe. Recent research has highlighted that identity is not simply imposed. It is also chosen, and actively used, albeit within particular social contexts and constraints. Against dominant representations of others there is resistance. Within structures of dominance there is agency. Analysing resistance and agency repoliticises relations between collectivities and draws attention to the central constituting factor of power in social relations. But it is possible to overemphasise resistance: to validate others through validating the lives of the colonised and exploited (Hall 1991, 1993). Valorising resistance may have the unintended effect of belittling the enormous costs exacted in situations of unequal power, exclusion and discrimination. While political legitimacy, gaining access or a hearing, may depend on being able to call up a constituency and authorise representations through appeals to authenticity, it provides the basis for policing the boundaries of authenticity wherein some insiders may find themselves excluded because they are not authentic enough. For example, stressing race and ethnic differences can obscure experiences and interests based on class or gender divisions. This leads to questions we therefore need to ask: Who is constructing the categories and defining the boundaries? Who is resisting these constructions and definitions? What are the consequences being written into or out of particular categories? What happens when subordinate groups seek to mobilise along boundaries drawn for the purposes of domination? What happens to individuals whose multiple identities may be fragmented and segmented by category politics? Much contemporary discussion of racialised identity politics does not adequately address the dilemmas and questions outlined above. This is largely because such discussion tends to be underpinned by the presumption that one’s identity necessarily defines one’s politics and that there can

Race, Racism and Class


be no politics until the subject has excavated or laid claim to her or his identity. Inherent in such positions is the failure to understand the way in which identity grows out of and is transformed by action and struggle. This is one of the dangers of the focus on exactly who is covered by specific racial and ethnic categories in contemporary European societies. By way of example, usage of the notion of ‘black’ to cover a variety of diverse communities, as it was still common among scholars in Britain during the 1970s and 1980s, has been rejected in favour of other categories, such as Asian, Muslim and African Caribbean (Modood 2005; Modood & Ahmad 2007). Yet others have argued for a notion of black grounded in racial particularity. But the danger of these approaches is that one is presented with no more than a strategy of simple inversion wherein the old bad black essentialist subject is replaced by a new good ethnic or cultural essentialist subject whose identity necessarily guarantees a correct politics (Cheong et al. 2007).

Culture, religion and identity Alongside the role of identity politics in racialised social situations another important trend seen at the beginning of the twenty-first century is the increasing role of religious identities as a source of political mobilisation and claims-making. To some extent, and particularly in Europe, this trend is tied into the political debates about Islam and its role in contemporary European culture and societies (Allen 2011; Bleich 2010). More generally, and often in complex ways at the local level, religion seems to have become a catalyst for oppressed groups to craft political claims within ethical frameworks (Back et al. 2009; O’Toole & Gale 2010). It has become a way of mobilising around feelings of commonality with others who share a sense of religious and cultural belonging, as well as, at a broader level, a process of claiming power and influence in local and national political institutions. This is evident both in terms of electoral political inclusion and in the wider set of mobilisations shaped by social movement actors. Because religious identities among migrant and ethnic minority communities have come to the fore at the beginning of the twenty-first century, it constitutes an area of great significance for the field of race and ethnic studies. Religion, in this context, seems to have become increasingly and more visibly intertwined with race and ethnicity. As a result, the connections between race, ethnicity and religion have become an important arena for social and policy-related research. More importantly contemporary research about race and ethnicity needs to look more rigorously at the role that religion plays in shaping racialised social relations in contemporary societies. Some segments within minority communities have claimed religious and cultural rights that are seen as outside of the com-

Religious identity


John Solomos

mon values of the “West”. These have become part of the current ­climate of public debate and are thus likely to shape both popular and policy agendas in the coming period.

Race, multiculturalism and difference

Changing policies


The recent controversies about multiculturalism and social policy are another key arena of debate that is likely to be key in the coming decades. A good way to explicate some of these processes is to look at the changing experience in Britain in relation to these issues. Successive British governments since the 1960s have accepted, with varying degrees of enthusiasm, the core idea that policies and initiatives on race and immigration should work on the principle of helping migrants to integrate into society while developing the capacity of society as a whole to live with difference. We have seen the emergence of a range of national and local policies articulating a philosophy of multiculturalism, albeit in a context where there is little agreement on what the term multiculturalism actually means, both conceptually and in practice (Favell 2001a; Lentin 2005). It has come to encompass a startling variety of viewpoints ranging from left to right, from academic to policy-oriented. What one finds, therefore, is a number of overlapping debates, a number of multiculturalisms, which we must be wary of eliding into some singular phenomenon. Whatever the diversity of meanings that have been attached to the notion of “multicultural Britain” over the years, there are a number of features of contemporary Britain that underpin this notion. First, Britain is today a radically more diverse society than it was in the 1960s. About 8 per cent of the population nationwide and nearly 30 per cent in cities like London come from an ethnic minority background. In social arenas such as employment, education and housing, questions of racial and ethnic diversity are at the heart of public and policy debates. In political culture, the question of representation of the interests of minority communities has come to the fore in both local and national institutions. It is therefore not surprising that the notion of Britain as a society being shaped by diversity has become somewhat taken for granted. Politicians such as David Miliband (2006) speak of ‘building community in a diverse society’ and of the advantages of diverse identities. Reflecting on current thinking, Miliband (2006) defines multiculturalism in contemporary Britain thus: Multiculturalism in this reading is based on a very simple notion – that most people have multiple loyalties, affinities and attachments, to their ethnic and religious community, to their geographical community, to their communities of interest, and to their national home. And the choice

Race, Racism and Class


to emphasise different parts of their identities varies among different people, and at different times and places in our lives. On Saturdays at three o’clock, I am an Arsenal fan first, a Londoner second, British third, and, at that time, I wear my origins, political affiliations, constituency interests lightly.

In the aftermath of the 7/7 bombings in London it became clear that not all politicians shared Miliband’s positive take on the state of multiculturalism in British society. Indeed, some commentators argued that there was a need to question the very idea of multiculturalism and to emphasise greater social cohesion alongside diversity. It was in this context that the Commission on Integration and Cohesion was set up, which produced the report Our Shared Future in 2007. Despite of the dangers of simplistic comparisons, it can be argued that we need to look beyond nation-state boundaries if we are to derive a more rounded understanding of the factors that have shaped our contemporary understandings of multiculturalism and citizenship. At the very least, we need to engage in a dialogue that allows us to draw on the rich bodies of research that have developed within specific societies about these questions. Whatever the differences between models of policy response, it is clear that they also have something in common. At the heart of contemporary discourses about identity are questions about what it means to belong or to be excluded from particular collectivities. It is to this issue we now turn, particularly with regard to citizenship rights in societies that are becoming increasingly multicultural. Within both popular and academic discourse there is growing evidence of concern about how questions of citizenship need to be reconceptualised in the context of multicultural societies. Indeed in contemporary European societies this can be seen as one of the key questions that governments of various kinds are trying to come to terms with. Two important elements of this debate are the political rights of minorities, including representation in both local and national politics, and the position of minority religious and cultural rights in societies that are becoming more diverse. The discrimination suffered by migrants and members of minorities in employment, housing and education and their treatment by state representatives such as the police and immigration officials remains a perennial problem in many European societies. A coherent response is urgently needed to the question of what, if anything, can be done to protect the rights of minorities and to develop extensive notions of citizenship and democracy that include those minorities which are excluded based on criteria of race, religion and ethnicity. There are clearly quite divergent perspectives in the present political environment about how best to deal with all of these concerns. There is, for example, a wealth of discussion about what measures are necessary to tackle the inequalities and exclusions that confront minority groups. At the



John Solomos

same time, existing initiatives have proven severely limited in their impact and have failed to bring about a major improvement in the socio-political position of minorities. The application of the models outlined above in ­Britain, Germany, France and Italy has had a limited impact. Discrimination remains ubiquitous, racist violence is on the increase and segregation is a fact of life for a large proportion of minorities in each of these countries.

Power, racism and policy agendas

Restrictions and discriminations

A growing area of research over the past decade and more is the political inclusion or exclusion of minorities within the context of liberal-democratic institutions. We are increasingly aware of the gap between formal citizenship and the de facto restriction of the economic and social rights of minorities as a result of discrimination, economic restructuring and the decline of the welfare state. This gap constitutes both evidence of a continuing failure of policy and an ongoing challenge not solely to policymakers, but also to scholars of these issues, to rethink and reformulate responses to inequality and discrimination. In Britain, particularly in the aftermath of the riots of 2001 and 2011, the bombings in London on 7/7 and other confrontations, the emphasis of recent policy developments has been on the duties of newcomers to conform and to develop a sense of shared identity (McGhee 2010). Some commentators thus note a shift from the politics of multiculturalism to a rhetoric based on integration and assimilation into the dominant cultural fabric of British society. In this environment, racism and discrimination have tended to be discussed less, and there has been relatively less activity to tackle forms of institutionalised racism in both the public and the private sector (Lentin and Titley 2011; Schuster and Solomos 2004). The significance of issues of identity, difference and culture for minority and majority populations needs to be located within a broader reconceptualisation of substantive democracy that includes a place for the rights of minorities. The value of such a politics is that it makes the complicated issue of difference fundamental to the discourse on substantive citizenship; moreover, it favours looking at the conflict over relations of power, identity and culture as central to a broader struggle to advance the critical imperatives of a democratic society. Of key importance to such a struggle is the need to rethink and rewrite difference in relation to wider questions of membership, community and social responsibility. Recent controversies about the rights to citizenship of migrants and refugees have provided us with an insight into some of the real political tensions that remain about how we can define the boundaries of citizenship and belonging in contemporary societies. The growing public interest

Race, Racism and Class


in the role of fundamentalism among segments of the Muslim communities in various countries has given new life to debates about cultural differences and processes of integration (Scholten 2011). It is interesting to note in this regard that justifiable concerns about the rights of women are being exploited both to attack some minorities and to undermine a commitment to multiculturalism. By highlighting some of the most obvious limitations of multiculturalism and anti-racism in shaping policy change in this field, such controversies have done much to bring about a much more critical debate about the role and impact of policies premised on notions such as multiculturalism. They have also highlighted the ever-changing terms of political and policy agendas about these issues and the fact that there is little agreement about what kind of strategies for change should be pursued. The preoccupation in much of the literature in this field with issues of identity and the assertion of the relevance and importance of understanding the role of new ethnicities has not resolved a fundamental question: How can the quest for ever more specific identities be balanced with the need to allow for broader and less fixed cultural identities? Indeed, if anything, the quest for a politics of identity has helped to highlight one of the key dilemmas of liberal political thought. Yet it is quite clear that the quest for more specific as opposed to universal identities is becoming more pronounced in the present political environment. The search for national, ethnic and racial identities has become a pronounced, if not dominant, feature of political debate within both majority and minority communities in the postmodern societies of the early twenty-first century.

Rethinking the study of race and racism This chapter has focused thus far on exploring the evolution and development of debates about race, racism and class over the past four decades. In particular it has examined the reasons behind the growth and expansion of this field of scholarship and the development of new theoretical and analytical perspectives in this period. It is also important, however, to look forward to some of the challenges that we are likely to face in the coming period. It is to this issue that we now turn. A question that has been much debated in recent years is what kind of research agendas for the study of race and racism need to be developed in the coming decades of the twenty-first century (Bloch & Solomos 2010; Garner 2009; Goldberg 2009). Part of the reason for this debate is awareness that these issues are likely to remain at the heart of future discussions in both political culture and civil society. Another part is the realisation that although we have seen a rapid growth of research in this field, many questions remain to be explored before we can claim to have developed a well-rounded account of race and racism in the contemporary global

New concepts


Fluid catergories

Football and racism

John Solomos

environment. Take, for example, the debates about the fluidity of the categories of race, ethnicity and racism. Is race a subset of ethnicity, or vice versa? How might we theoretically link race and ethnicity? What relationship do race and ethnicity have to racism? Is racism an ideology or a set of institutional practices? Are race and ethnicity identity categories that can be harnessed by systems of racism? These questions have been tackled from a variety of angles during the past decade, yet it is by no means clear, as we argued above, that we are closer to resolving the issues that they raise. The very definitions of race, ethnicity and racism are far from settled and remain points of debate and controversy (Bobo & Charles 2009; Law 2010). The unsettled nature of debates about race and racism becomes clearer if we move from general theoretical questions to specific arenas of analysis. Take the issue of racialised forms of the interrelationship between race and class inequality. This has been a recurrent theme in contemporary policy debates both in North America and in Europe. During the 1990s and 2000s there has been a recurrent debate in the USA about the “continuing significance of race” as a factor in shaping the social and economic experiences of African Americans. Part of the reason for this debate is that although in the aftermath of the Civil Rights Movement there was evidence of a growing black middle class, other African Americans appeared to be drawn into a situation in which their social and economic opportunities were shaped by their position at the bottom of the social and economic structures of US society (Anderson & Massey 2001; Brown et al. 2003; Smelser, Wilson & Mitchell 2001). The work of William Julius Wilson, among others, highlights the complex realities of a growing separation in terms of class positioning between those African American that had managed to gain space within middle-class spaces and a growing underclass that was, in a sense, cast aside by the rest of American society (Wilson 1987, 2009). One of the key issues guiding research agendas in the US context has been the future of class and racialised inequalities within the fabric of US social and economic institutions. Similar debates have taken place in European societies, although given the intersection between questions of race and immigration, the focus there has not been on one racialised community but on the growing differentiations between various types of migrant communities. Another example of the complexities of race in contemporary societies can be found in popular forms of culture such as sport. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, this author conducted with colleagues a research project on the changing debates about race and racism within the context of football culture in England. Much of the public discourse about this issue in the 1990s was framed by the notion that racism was an endemic feature of the everyday cultures of football supporters. Rather than assume that racism shaped all aspects of the cultural practices of football

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supporters, we sought to explore the ways in which changing discourses about race and nation were emerging as part of British football culture during this period (Back, Crabbe & Solomos 2001). We drew on empirical research among football supporters, players and administrators to explore how discourses about race and racism within the cultures of football were evolving and changing as a result of both wider social trends and changes within the institutions of football. We did not assume that there was one kind of discourse about race, class and nation in popular football cultures. Instead, we wanted to situate the complex everyday rituals and interactions in football that have produced both expressions of racism as well as oppositional voices seeking to challenge both institutional racism and everyday racism in football cultures. While carrying out research using interviews with football supporters, football players and administrators, it quickly became clear to us that race is not a given but the process in which racial difference in invoked and connected with issues of identity, entitlement and belonging. Through focusing on the repeated or cyclical nature of these processes in sport, we argued that it is possible to identify moments in which ruptures occur that may challenge the tenets of racial exclusion (ibid.). As part of this study, we had to confront precisely the question of how racialised identities are constructed and refashioned in everyday contexts. It is within the everydayness of sport that we can find the micro-enactment of inclusion and exclusion, group definition and identity. Even in the definition of rivalries within sport there is recognition. The ways in which sporting cultures put the world together implicitly constructs limits on the levels of participation from Britain’s diverse minority communities. This involves also facing the vexed question about how to define and conceptualise racism. The forms of racism that we found in the context of this project highlight the complex ways in which racial ideologies can be cast through either the racialised body (i.e., that racial difference can be connected with athletic prowess and, by implication, also cerebral function) or ossified notions of culture that are defined in the relationship between particular cultural groupings and their relationship to sport and sporting cultures (Giulianotti & Robertson 2007; Hylton 2009). Research of this kind can perhaps show us something about how ideas about race and racial difference work in specific contexts, enabling us to begin to advance our conceptual frameworks in directions that can make them more sensitive to the nuanced and intricate varieties of racism in contemporary societies. Rather than assume that racism is a uniform phenomenon, it is important to situate it within specific contexts and environments in order to fully understand the everyday workings of race and racism, in terms of both meaning and practice.

Excluding minorities


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Changing and reshaping

The analysis above explored some key facets of contemporary debates about race, racism and class in the today’s social and political environment. In exploring these transformations, we argued that these debates need to be seen not just as part of academic discourses, since they are partly the product of wider social and political changes that have shaped societies in various parts of the world. Indeed, it is important to emphasise that this field is constantly being refashioned by the emergence of new patterns of migration, processes of racialisation and minority formation, as well as by the evolution of new theoretical and empirical research agendas (Bulmer & Solomos 2004; Twine & Warren 2000; Zuberi & Bonilla-Silva 2008). In the context of sociological discourses in the UK on race and racism in the past decade, for example, it is clear that wider social processes such as immigration and asylum, riots and urban unrest, violence and terrorism, religious social movements and economic dislocation have done much to reshape academic research agendas, funding decisions and publication agendas. This is not to say that academic agendas have been simply a reflection of these wider social and political transformations. It is also the case that scholarly research has become in some ways more inward-looking in recent years and focused on questions not linked to ongoing concerns in political culture and civil society. But given the politically-sensitive nature of many of the issues that shape research agendas on race and racism in countries such as the UK, it is important not to lose sight of the inherently politicised nature of research on race relations (Rex 1979a, 1979b). This chapter argued that one of the problems of academic research in this field over the past four decades has been the tendency for theoretical debates to become a separate subfield rather than an integral part of theoretically-informed empirical research agendas. An example of this separation is found in the growing body of work on experiences of race, ethnicity and cultural diversity in specific social and cultural environments. During the past two decades, a large body of work on multiculture and cultural diversity has taken a normative turn and remained resolutely abstract and theoretical. Much of this work has been informative and addressed important issues of relevance to ongoing debates about the everyday realities of living in complex multicultural communities and societies. Yet at the same, there remains notable gap in terms of utilising theoretical debates to inform and shape empirically-focused studies of the lived realities of multiculture in contemporary societies. Indeed, much of the empirical research in this field seems hardly to engage with the growing body of theoretical discourse on multiculturalism. The lack of engagement between empirical findings and theoretical discourse can be attributed in part to a preoccupation with developing sophisticated theoretical narratives. This has led to a neglect of empirically-

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focused research, whether at the local, national or transnational level. It is also in partly because funding remains a crucial component of rigorous empirical research. In these times of budget cuts and retrenchment in academic research, it has become more difficult to get such research off the ground. Yet it remains important for us to be able to shift our field of vision towards theoretically-informed empirical research if we are going to be able to make substantive interventions in debates about such pressing questions as immigration and social cohesion, living in multicultural societies, political and social inclusion of minorities, religious and cultural diversity, and racialised class inequalities. A good example of the need for such a shift in focus is found in the ongoing debate about the reasons why new forms of racism have emerged in contemporary societies. Much speculative discussion has taken place in the past decade or so about the social and economic context that has helped to shape the growth of racist political and social movements and anti-immigrant ideologies. Yet we have relatively little empirical research on the ways in which racism is produced and reproduced within contemporary societies. Neither do we have much research that systematically compares across different locales and national contexts the mobilisations that have helped to shape contemporary and everyday forms of racism. It should be clear from the context and the reference points of this chapter that the arguments developed here engage closely with current debates and controversies within sociological research on race and racism in the UK over the past four decades. It may well be that some of the points raised need to be thought of somewhat differently within a broader set of theoretical debates about the changing nature of contemporary forms of racism. Certainly, much can be learned from all of us reflecting on the concerns and preoccupations, as well as the terms of discourse, of our different national scholarly traditions in this field. It seems clear, however, that part of our concern throughout this dialogue should be a critical interrogation about what kinds of theoretical tools and empirical research we need if we are to fully comprehend the complexities of constructions of race and racism in the contemporary global environment.

Acknowledgements I would like to thank the following for helpful discussions that have shaped some of the thinking that has gone into this chapter: Claire Alexander, Alice Bloch, Michael Keith, Karim Murji, Sarah Neal and Stephen Small. As editors of this volume, Marco Martiniello and Jan Rath provided helpful suggestions for improving the clarity of the key arguments. I am grateful to all of them.

Empirical research


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References Allen, C. (2011), ‘Opposing Islamification or promoting Islamophobia? Understanding the English Defence League’, Patterns of Prejudice 45 (4): 279-294. Anderson, E. & D. S. Massey (eds) (2001), Problem of the Century: Racial Stratification in the United States. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Back, L., T. Crabbe & J. Solomos (2001), The Changing Face of Football: Racism, Identity and Multiculture in the English Game. Oxford: Berg. Back, L., M. Keith, A. Khan, K. Shukra & J. Solomos (2009), ‘Islam and the new political landscape: Faith communities, political participation and social change’, Theory Culture & Society 26 (4): 1-23. Back, L. & J. Solomos (eds) (2009), Theories of Race and Racism: A Reader (Second edition). London: Routledge. Balibar, E. & I. Wallerstein (1991), Race, Nation, Class: Ambiguous Identities. London: Verso. Banton, M. (1955), The Coloured Question: Negro Immigrants in an English City. London: Jonathan Cape. Banton, M. (1959), White and Coloured: The Behaviour of British People Towards Coloured Immigrants. London: Jonathan Cape. Banton, M. (2001), ‘Progress in ethnic and racial studies’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 24 (2): 173-194. Bellamy, R., D. Castiglione & J. Shaw (eds) (2006), Making European Citizens: Civic Inclusion in a Transnational Context. Basingtoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Blauner, R. (2002), Racial Oppression in America (Second edition). New York: Harper and Row. Bleich, E. (ed.) (2010), Muslims and the State in the Post-9/11 West. London: Routledge. Bloch, A. & J. Solomos (eds) (2010), Race and Ethnicity in the Twenty-First Century. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Bobo, L. D. & C. Z. Charles (2009), ‘Race in the American mind: From the Moynihan Report to the Obama candidacy’, Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 621: 243-259. Bonilla-Silva, E. (1997), ‘Rethinking racism: Toward a structural interpretation’, American Sociological Review 62 (3): 465-480. Bowser, B. P. (ed.) (1995), Racism and Anti-Racism in World Perspective. London: Sage. Bradley, T. (2009), ‘Religion and globalisation: Bringing anthropology and international relations together in the study of religious-political transnational movements’, Globalizations 6 (2): 265-279. Brown, M. K., M. Carnoy, E. Currie, T. Duster, D. B. Oppenheimer, M. M. Shultz & D. Wellman (2003), Whitewashing Race: The Myth of a Color-Blind Society. Berkeley: University of California Press. Brubaker, R. (2004) ‘In the name of the nation: Reflections on nationalism and patrotism’, Citizenship Studies 8 (2): 115-127.

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Bulmer, M. & J. Solomos (eds) (2004), Researching Race and Racism. London: Routledge. Calhoun, C. J. (2007), Nations Matter: Culture, History, and the Cosmopolitan Dream. London: Routledge. Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies (1982), The Empire Strikes Back: Race and Racism in 70s Britain. London: Hutchinson. Cheong, P. H., R. Edwards, H. Goulbourne & J. Solomos (2007), ‘Immigration, social cohesion and social capital: A critical review’, Critical Social Policy 27 (1): 24-49. Cohen, R. (1994), Frontiers of Identity: The British and the Others. London: Longman. Collins, P. H. (2007), ‘Pushing the boundaries or business as usual? Race, class, and gender studies and sociological inquiry’ in C. J. Calhoun (ed.), Sociology in America: A History. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Collins, P. H. & J. Solomos (eds) (2010), The Sage Handbook of Race and Ethnic Studies. London: Sage. Commission on Integration and Cohesion (2007), Our Shared Future. London: Commission on Integration and Cohesion. Cornell, S. & D. Hartmann (2007), Ethnicity and Race: Making Identities in a Changing World (Second edition). Thousand Oaks: Pine Forge Press. Du Bois, W. E. B. (1989), The Souls of Black Folk. New York: Bantam Books. Du Bois, W. E. B. (1996), The Philadelphia Negro: A Social Study. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. Essed, P. & D. T. Goldberg (eds) (2002), Race Critical Theories: Text and Context. Oxford: Blackwell. Faist, T. (2010), ‘Towards transnational studies: World theories, transnationalisation and changing institutions’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36 (10): 1665-1687. Favell, A. (2001a), ‘Multiethnic Britain: An exception in Europe’, Patterns of Prejudice 35 (1): 35-58. Favell, A. (2001b), Philosophies of Integration: Integration and the Idea of Citizenship in France and Britain (Second edition). Basingstoke: Palgrave. Frazier, E. F. (1947), ‘Sociological theory and race relations’, American Sociological Review 12 (3): 265-271. Frazier, E. F. (1968), E. Franklin Frazier on Race Relations. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Garner, S. (2009), Racisms: An Introduction. London Sage. Giulianotti, R. & R. Robertson (eds) (2007), Globalization and Sport. Oxford: Blackwell. Goldberg, D. T. (2006), ‘Racial Europeanization’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 29 (2): 331-364. Goldberg, D. T. (2009), ‘Racial comparisons, relational racisms: Some thoughts on method’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 32 (7): 1271-1282. Goldberg, D. T. & J. Solomos (eds) (2002), A Companion to Racial and Ethnic Studies. Oxford: Blackwell.


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Guillaumin, C. (1980), ‘The idea of race and its elevation to autonomous, scientific and legal status’, in United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (ed.), Sociological Theories: Race and Colonialism. Paris: UNESCO. Hall, S. (1991), ‘Old and new identities, old and new ethnicities’, in A. D. King (ed.), Culture, Globalization and the World System. Basingstoke: Macmillan. Hall, S. (1993), ‘Culture, community, nation’, Cultural Studies 1 (3): 349-363. Hylton, K. (2009), ‘Race’ and Sport: Critical Race Theory. London: Routledge. Ireland, P. (1994), The Policy Challenge of Ethnic Diversity. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Juergensmeyer, M. (2008), Global Rebellion: Religious Challenges to the Secular State, from Christian Militias to Al Qaeda. Berkeley: University of California Press. Keith, M. (2005), After the Cosmopolitan? Multicultural Cities and the Future of Racism. London: Routledge. Kivisto, P. & P. R. Croll (2012), Race and Ethnicity: The Basics. New York: Routledge. Law, I. (2010), Racism and Ethnicity: Global Debates, Dilemmas, Directions. Harlow: Longman. Lentin, A. (2005), ‘Replacing “Race”, Historicizing “Culture” in Multiculturalism’, Patterns of Prejudice 39 (4): 379-396. Lentin, A. & G. Titley (2011), The Crises of Multiculturalism: Racism in a Neoliberal Age. London: Zed Books. Martiniello, M. (2003), ‘Researching and teaching in the field of ethnic and racial studies: A view from Continental Europe’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 26 (3): 537545. Martiniello, M. & J. Rath (eds) (2010), Selected Studies in International Migration and Immigrant Incorporation. IMISCOE Textbooks. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. McGhee, D. (2009), ‘The paths to citizenship: A critical examination of immigration policy in Britain since 2001’, Patterns of Prejudice 43 (1): 41-64. McGhee, D. (2010), Security, Citizenship and Human Rights: Shared Values in Uncertain Times. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Miles, R. (1982), Racism and Migrant Labour. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. Miles, R. (1984), ‘Marxism versus the sociology of “race relations”’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 7 (2): 217-237. Miles, R. & M. Brown (2003), Racism (Second edition). London: Routledge. Miliband, D. (2006), Building Community in a Diverse Society. Scarman Memorial Lecture. London: Scarman Trust. Modood, T. (2005), Multicultural Politics: Racism, Ethnicity, and Muslims in Britain. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Modood, T. & F. Ahmad (2007), ‘British Muslim perspectives on multiculturalism’, Theory, Culture & Society 24 (2): 187-213. Morning, A. (2008), ‘Ethnic classification in global perspective: A cross-national survey of the 2000 census round’, Population Research and Policy Review 27 (2): 239-272.

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Nobles, M. (2000), Shades of Citizenship: Race and Census in Modern Politics. Stanford: Stanford University Press. O’Toole, T. & R. Gale (2010), ‘Contemporary grammars of political action among ethnic minority young activists’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 33 (1): 126-143. Omi, M. & H. Winant (1987), ‘Racial theory in the post-war United States: A review and critique’, Sage Race Relations Abstracts 12 (2): 3-44. Omi, M. & H. Winant (1994), Racial Formation in the United States (Second edition). London: Routledge. Park, R. E. (1950), Race and Culture: Essays in the Sociology of Contemporary Man. New York: Free Press. Rath, J. (1993), ‘The ideological representation of migrant workers in Europe: A matter of racialisation?’, in J. Wrench & J. Solomos (eds), Racism and Migration in Western Europe. Oxford: Berg. Rex, J. (1979a), ‘Race relations research in an academic setting: A personal note’, Home Office Research Bulletin 8: 29-30. Rex, J. (1979b), ‘The right lines for race research’, New Society 5 (April): 14-16. Rex, J. (1981), ‘A working paradigm for race relations research’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 4 (1): 1-25. Rex, J. & D. Mason (eds) (1986), Theories of Race and Ethnic Relations. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Rex, J. & R. Moore (1967), Race, Community and Conflict: A Study of Sparkbrook. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Rex, J. & S. Tomlinson (1979), Colonial Immigrants in a British City: A Class Analysis. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. Scholten, P. (2011), ‘Constructing Dutch immigrant policy: Research-policy relations and immigrant integration policy-making in the Netherlands’, British Journal of Politics & International Relations 13 (1): 75-92. Schuster, L. & J. Solomos (2004), ‘Race, immigration and asylum: New labour’s agenda and its consequences’, Ethnicities 4 (2): 267-300. Small, S. & J. Solomos (2006), ‘Race, immigration and politics in Britain: Changing policy agendas and conceptual paradigms, 1940s-2000s’, International Journal of Comparative Sociology 47 (3-4): 235-257. Smelser, N. J., W. J. Wilson & F. Mitchell (eds) (2001), America Becoming: Racial Trends and Their Consequences (Vols 1 & 2). Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press. Solomos, J. (1986), ‘Varieties of Marxist conceptions of “race”, class and the state: A critical analysis’, in J. Rex & D. Mason (eds), Theories of Race and Ethnic Relations. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Stanfield, J. H. (ed.) (1993), A History of Race Relations Research: First-Generation Recollections. Newbury Park: Sage. Stanfield, J. H. & R. M. Dennis (eds) (1993), Race and Ethnicity in Research Methods. Newbury Park: Sage. Telles, E. E. (2004), Race in Another America: The Significance of Skin Color in Brazil. Princeton: Princeton University Press.


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Twine, F. W. & J. W. Warren (eds) (2000), Racing Research, Researching Race: Methodological Dilemmas in Critical Race Studies. New York: New York University Press. Wetherell, M. (ed.) (2009a), Identity in the Twenty-First Century: New Trends in Changing Times. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Wetherell, M. (ed.) (2009b), Theorizing Identities and Social Action. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Wieviorka, M. (1995), The Arena of Racism. London: Sage. Wilson, W. J. (1987), The Truly Disadvantaged: The Inner City, the Underclass and Public Policy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Wilson, W. J. (2009), More than Just Race: Being Black and Poor in the Inner City. New York: W. W. Norton. Wimmer, A. & N. Glick Schiller (2003), ‘Methodological nationalism, the social sciences, and the study of migration: As essay on historical epistemology’, International Migration Review 37 (3): 576-610. Winant, H. (2001), The World Is a Ghetto: Race and Democracy since World War II. New York: Basic Books. Winant, H. (2006), ‘Race and racism: Towards a global future’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 29 (5): 986-1003. Winant, H. (2007), ‘The dark side of the force: One hundred years of the sociology of race’ in C. Calhoun (ed.), Sociology in America: A History. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Zuberi, T. & E. Bonilla-Silva (eds) (2008), White Logic, White Methods: Racism and Methodology. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield.

Key reading Back, L. & J. Solomos (eds) (2009), Theories of Race and Racism: A Reader (Second edition). London: Routledge. Kivisto, P. & P. R. Croll (2012), Race and Ethnicity: The Basics. New York: Routledge. Law, I. (2010), Racism and Ethnicity: Global Debates, Dilemmas, Directions. Harlow: Longman. Wieviorka, M. (1995), The Arena of Racism. London: Sage. Winant, H. (2007), ‘The dark side of the force: One hundred years of the sociology of race’, in C. Calhoun (ed.), Sociology in America: A History. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

About the author John Solomos is a professor of sociology at the University of Warwick. He has researched and written widely on the history and contemporary forms of race and ethnic relations in Britain, theories of race and racism, the politics of race, equal opportunity policies, multiculturalism and social

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policy, race and football and racist movements and ideas. His most recent books are Race, Multiculture and Social Policy (2013), co-authored with Alice Bloch and Sarah Neal, and Transnational Families: Ethnicities, Identities and Social Capital (2010 and 2011), co-authored with Harry Goulbourne, Tracey Reynolds and Elisabetta Zontini. He edited The Sage Handbook of Race and Ethnic Studies (2010) with Patricia Hill Collins, Race and Ethnicity in the Twenty-First Century (2010) with Alice Bloch and Theories of Race and Racism: A Reader (2nd edition, 2009) with Les Back. He is joint editor with Martin Bulmer of the international journal Ethnic and Racial Studies.

6  Integration and Gender Marlou Schrover

Summary This chapter describes how, by whom and why differences according to gender are made in connection with integration. Immigrant men and immigrant women differ in all aspects of integration. Neither the pace nor the trajectory of integration is the same for men and women. Differences according to gender intersect with the differ­ en­ces according to class, ethnicity and race, religion, age, sexuality, ­(dis)ability, et cetera. The victimised immigrant woman provides a strong counter-identity – ‘she’ is everything that ‘we’ are not – enshrining the idea of a cohesive society while providing a basis for protectionist claims to muster societal support, enforcing the idea of a caring ­society. Keywords: intersectionality, femininity, masculinity, multiple discrimination victimisation

Introduction It is all too common to hear protest at having chapter on women or gender in any academic volume or handbook. Such a chapter may be used and seen as an excuse for ignoring women or not addressing gender in any of the other chapters. Originally the phrase ‘add women and stir’ was coined to point out that gender equality would not be achieved by simply letting (a few) women enter a profession, or giving women and men equal rights (Noddings 2001; Quay Hutchison 2003). Later authors adapted the phrase: ‘add sex and stir’, ‘add gender and stir’, and finally ‘add a chapter on gender and stir’ (Gouda 2003). The reason for this chapter is that there is a large literature on gender and integration (for an overview see Schrover & Moloney 2013). Moreover, gender differences are important in societal and political debates on immigration and integration, and as such affect policies. The literature tends to look more at immigrant women and femininity, than comparing men and women or femininity and masculinity (Sinke

Importance of gender


Defining gender

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2006; Schrover & Yeo 2010; Nawyn 2010; Schrover & Moloney 2013). Recent studies do examine masculinity. There is a particular emphasis on homosexual and Asian immigrant men (Connell 1993; España-Maram 2006; McKay 2007; Ryan & Webster 2008; Nobil Ahmad 2011), although masculinity has also been addressed in relation to other migrant groups (see, e.g., Broughton 2008). There is no one gender theory. Rather there is a plethora of theories explaining how migration and integration differ according to gender. Discussing them results in a mosaic rather than a single cohesive story line. This chapter, therefore, cannot give an overview of gender theory similar to the overview of integration theory provided by Alba and Nee in this volume. Nonetheless, although there is no one gender theory, there is common ground, as this chapter will show. Gender is defined as the constitutive element of social relationships, particularly relationships of power, based on perceived differences between the sexes (Scott 1986). In 1955, Money (1955) introduced the term ‘gender’, as a linguistic concept, because the concept ‘sex’ was inadequate as a category of analysis for the description of social identities. ‘Sex’ relates to the identification of individuals based on their biological endowments and functions. Tables can be broken down according to sex, for instance, for marital age or high-school dropout rates. Gender concerns the ascription of social characteristics such as ‘womanly’, ‘manly’, ‘feminine’ and ‘masculine’. It is a normative concept, related to the behaviour that is expected of men or women. Gender roles are internalised and institutionalised in laws and regulations (Scott 1986, 1988; Calavita 2006). This chapter reviews aspects of integration for which gender differences have been observed in the literature. The bias in the literature mentioned above – with more studies being focused on women and femininity than on men and masculinity – has consequences for the information presented here. Future research will no doubt remedy shortcomings, but for now it means that in this chapter certain aspects are only addressed briefly, and that at some points more questions are asked than answered. The leading question is how, by whom and why are differences made according to gender in connection with integration. This chapter looks at belonging, citizenship and transnationalism, spatiality, immigrant organisations, multiculturalism, marital behaviour, and education and labour. This choice of topics was determined by the existing literature, as well as by the topics addressed in the other chapters of this volume. We start with some observations regarding intersectionality.

Integration and Gender


Intersectionality Gender intersects with other categories of analysis, such as class, race and ethnicity. Like gender, these are elements of power and equality or inequality. They are also defining components of identity (personal, social, legal), social location, opportunity and experience. In the 1980s, authors introduced the concept intersectionality to emphasise the interaction between these categories of analysis (Frager 1999; Davis 2008). Intersectionality underlines the way social, economic and political systems of oppression and privilege work simultaneously. Though the term intersectionality was new in the 1980s, the awareness that categories intersect was not. The categorical triad ‘race-class-gender’ (Knapp 2005) was widely used in earlier works. In 1952, Hollingshead observed:

Power relations

[H]orizontal strata ... transect ... [with] vertical structures ... based upon the social values that are attached to occupation, education, place of residence in the community, and associations ... The vertically differentiating factors of race, religion, and ethnic origin, when combined with the horizontally differentiating ones of occupation, education, place of residence and so on, produce a social structure that is highly compartmentalized (Hollingshead 1952: 685).

Minnis (1953) found a complex pattern of interlocking strands of ‘cleavage’: race, religion, ethnic and class, while Hacker (1951) saw possibilities for ‘fruitful analysis’ if ‘women’s roles’ were studied in combination with class and race. Intersectionality is used to describe how interaction works to include or exclude people (Crenshaw 1989; McCall 2005; Boris 2005; Phoenix & Pattynama 2006; Davis 2008). Potentially the list of inequalities is endless and can embrace apart from gender, class and race/ethnicity, also age, (dis)ability, religion and sexuality. Yet, empirical research becomes impossible if the list is extended endlessly. Furthermore, counting oppressions and discussing ‘double disadvantage’ or ‘triple jeopardy’ does little to explain identity and equality or inequality. Some authors using intersectionality get stuck in data collection, describe small groups and voice critique or make promises rather than present answers (Hancock 2007). Neither are all roots of inequalities equally changeable (you can change your religion, but not your age) or visible (you cannot easily hide your sex or colour) (Verloo 2006). Researchers using an intersectional approach tend to overstabilise the categories they study and start with the categorisations they seek explain. McCall (2005: 1773-1774), in response to this criticism, identified three intersectional approaches: anti-categorical, intra-categorical and inter-categorical. The anti-categorical approach deconstructs analytical categories, and moves away from essentialising the cat-

Anti, intra & inter


Social consequences


Marlou Schrover

egories that are the subject of analysis. It questions the existence of social categories, and sees them as linguistic constructions. It prioritises fluidity over stability of categories. The approach starts by breaking down categories and deconstructing the idea that clear divisions exist since this ignores the complexities of relationships that inform oppression. In this view, using social categories for research is seen as problematic. It makes practical analysis difficult. The intra-categorical approach focuses on social groups at neglected points of intersection. It challenges the use of broad categories – such as ‘women’ – and seeks to refine categories, for instance, ‘white, heterosexual, Western women’. It tries to move away from quantitative approaches, which as a rule use broad categories, and towards ‘thick’ ethnographic descriptions of small groups. Its disadvantage is that it shifts the focus away from larger social processes and structures that might be the causes of inequalities. The inter-categorical approach provisionally adopts existing categories to document relationships of inequality among social groups and changing configurations of inequality. McCall (ibid.) favours this last approach. Another way out of the deadlock is to study which inequalities (and identities) are made important in which context and by whom. Categories may be (linguistic) constructions, but they are nonetheless widely used, especially by policymakers. As a result, they do have actual societal consequences. It is more interesting and more useful to analyse what categorisations are used, rather than to introduce or refine categories. People have multiple identities, and can be affected by multiple inequalities, but the fact that they are situational reduces the length of the list, and makes research doable. Not all differences are important at all times. Within the context of this chapter it is important to identify who is categorising. McCall (ibid.) and others look at categorisation by researchers. However, authorities categorise too and base their policies (regarding, e.g., integration) on these categorisations. The policy turn that took place in the 1980s is helpful in this respect: how and why do authoritative bodies define and redefine categories? ‘Governmentality’ (Foucault 1991) depends on categorisations. Governmentality refers to practices through which subjects are governed and the techniques and strategies by which a society is rendered governable. States have the authority to decide who is who and to differentiate rights accordingly (Bourdieu 1994). In doing so, authorities create differences by gender, class, ethnicity, et cetera. Rather than attempting to avoid rigid categorisations, the way forward is to identify how authorities implicitly or explicitly use categorisations (rigid or not), and how and why this changes over time. Intersectional literature pays little attention to class (Walby, Armstrong & Strid 2012). Some authors call class a ‘zombie-like’ category: no longer significant but unwilling to die. In their view, Western societies are individualistic and class does not explain structural or durable inequality (Knapp

Integration and Gender


2005). Class has also faded from analyses because migrants are (unjustly and incorrectly) generically regarded as lower class. This idea is to some extent a result of the guest-worker migration, which was largely class homogeneous. Class differences are highly relevant, but in political debates more attention goes to differences according to ethnicity. Manifestations of class – for instance, related to crime – are frequently explained from the perspective of ethnicity. Class is furthermore not a justiciable inequality under EU legislation. In the EU context, there are six inequalities that are subject of legislation on discrimination: gender, ethnic­ity, disability, age, religion/belief and sexual orientation. When it comes to policies, there is competition among equality projects for a higher place in a hierarchy of inequality (Walby, Armstrong & Strid 2012). This leads to ‘Oppression Olympics’ where groups compete for the title of being the most oppressed so as to gain attention and political and financial support (Hancock 2007: 68). Researchers are not the only ones who find it difficult to include more than one category of analysis – authorities face a similar dilemma. They develop policies whereby gender, race/ethnicity, disability and sexual orientation are treated in isolation from one another. Policies do address multi-discriminations, but without analysing how they intersect. ‘Multiple discrimination’ is attractive to policymakers because it presents inequalities as similar to one another, and offer the same approach as a solution to all (Franken et al. 2009). In reality, the bases for inequalities are not the same (Verloo 2006: 222), and thus policies should not be either. However, the strategies employed by advocates of, for instance, women’s rights, minority rights and gay rights are similar, and discourses travel between categories (Schrover & Moloney 2013). The call from the literature on intersectionality to look simultaneously at gender, class and race/ethnicity has not been answered in the extensive literature on race and ethnicity. How racism differs according to gender has hardly been studied. Migrant women are presented as suffering a double dose of discrimination (gender and race) (double jeopardy) or as being under a quadruple whammy: discriminated according to ethnicity, gender, class and religion (especially if they adhere to Islam). Policies aiming to counter these disadvantages may reinforce stereotypes about vulnerable immigrant women. The victimhood discourse has successfully been used by organisations and advocates to acquire rights for immigrant women. As a result, all immigrant women have come to be seen as vulnerable and in need of protection. The ‘success’ of the victimhood discourse is not only explained by the fact that it fits key (Western) ideas on femininity. It also serves to give a humanitarian face – albeit beneficial to immigrant women only – to an essentially restrictive immigration policy and austere integration policies. Vulnerability has a negative connotation because it denies agency and empowerment (Schrover 2009). Since the 1980s, authors have for this reason

Justiciable inequality

Victimhood discourse


Emancipation paradox


Marlou Schrover

objected to the use of a victimhood discourse in issues concerning women, minorities or minority women (Leod & Saraga 1988). Objections have been raised against the victim-survivor dichotomy within the victimhood discourse in which agency and victimisation were presented as mutually exclusive states. Mohanty (1988) draws attention to the fact that Western feminists have eagerly bought into the construction of ‘third-world women’ as ‘powerless’, ‘exploited’ and ‘sexually harassed’. ‘Third-world women’ were, according to Mohanty, as a category automatically and necessarily defined as religious and as family and domestically oriented. Their victimisation played a role in the construction of a counter-identity of ‘Western’ women, who were everything the ‘third-world women’ were not (Doezema 2001). Walaardt (2013) shows that refugee men have also played the victimhood card successfully (and acquired rights based on that), while they retained a masculine hero image. They could be heroes and victims at the same time, and thus managed to maintain or bolster their masculinity. Thus, victimhood is associated mostly with immigrant femininity, but it can be used by immigrant men. The question is whether immigrant women and men have the same means and opportunities to escape from the victimhood trap (with ‘victim’ being their main identity, thus depriving them of power and agency). Intersectionality deals with multiple inequalities but so too do multiculturalism and hybridity (Walby, Armstrong & Strid 2012). Researchers on intersectionality have been criticised for ignoring the relationship between intersectionality and other concepts that aim to explain the problematisation of differences (Knapp 2005), as well as for their focus on discrimination while ignoring identity. Furthermore, little attention has been paid to the emancipation paradox: the fact that discrimination increases when groups emancipate and break out of their segregated space, niche or parallel society. More attention goes to how boundaries are constructed, and less to how they erode and blur. What happens at the intersection if some categories fall away? Difference is what connects inequality and identity. Within societies and between groups in societies there are many differences, some of which are considered ‘good’ or unimportant (Anthias 2013). Of interest are the differences that are (believed to be) problematic, and therefore lead to discrimination or inequality. It is only the differences that make a difference (in power relations, or identity) that are of interest to policymakers and researchers alike. They want to know how much difference or which differences are compatible with a cohesive society. The assumption is that parallel spheres and segregated societies are no problem as long as they do not lead to conflicts, riots or homegrown terrorism. Current policies reflect a fear that ‘bad’ differences will not disappear despite integration policies.

Integration and Gender


Belonging, citizenship and transnationalism Citizenship is seen as a key element of integration (see the chapter by Faist & Kivisto in this volume). Citizenship regimes are indicative of the openness of societies to newcomers, and they determine integration policies. In popular discourse, citizenship is presented as the crown on a successful integration trajectory. Current political and public discourse equates citizenship with integration, civil society and active societal participation. This conflation results from the definition of citizenship at two levels: the juridical and the discursive level (respectively, membership of the nation-state and membership of society). People with juridical citizenship can be denied discursive citizenship. At the juridical (or formal) level citizens have rights that non-citizens do not have (e.g., voting rights) (Marshall 1950). At the juridical level a sharp distinction is made between citizens and non-citizens. Discursive (or moral) citizenship relates to being (seen as) part of a community or society and being a virtuous citizen (Kennedy 2005). In recent decades, the sovereignty of nation-states has eroded, due to globalisation and creation of larger political units, such as the EU. Yet, this has not reduced the discursive or moral importance attached to citizenship (Bader 1999). Discursive citizenship is a vague and flexible notion (Schinkel 2008). Citizenship regimes are – or were in the past – not the same for men and women. Men could loose their juridical citizenship if they joined a foreign army, thus morally betraying their nation. For men this meant they moved. Women could loose both discursive and juridical citizenship without ever moving. Between 1850 and 1950, citizenship laws in most countries distinguished between men and women. Wives derived their citizenship from their husbands (Boris 2005; De Hart 2006). Women who married foreign men lost their citizenship, acquired the nationality of their husbands and became foreigners in their country of birth and abode. The number of women, affected by rules regarding derivative citizenship was significant. In 1922, 30,000 alien women living in Britain were British-born former subjects who had lost citizenship because of their marriage to a foreigner. Derivative citizenship built on ideas about family unity and diplomatic convenience, but was foremost influenced by gendered ideas about belonging. The last point is apparent in debates regarding the introduction of these laws. The 1907 Expatriation Act, which held that American women who married foreign men lost their US citizenship, was called the Gigolo Act: US women were to be punished for their preference of foreign men over American men (Volpp 2006). In several Western European countries women could reclaim their citizenship within one year of the end of their marriage (because of divorce or the death of their husband), but women were frequently unaware of this possibility. There were also exemptions to the rules regarding the loss of

Discursive citizenship


Derivative citizenship

Marlou Schrover

citizenship. Thus, while ‘citizenship’ is a closed concept (you either have it or you do not), policymakers introduced open concepts that gave them room to manoeuver. The resulting laws were not only highly confusing, but they were also applied with flexibility. Decisions were influenced by strong moral and gendered overtones. Great Britain abolished its laws regarding derivative citizenship in 1948, Germany did in 1953 and the Netherlands followed in 1964 (De Hart 2006). The Convention on Nationality for Married Women was agreed in 1957, but countries took a long time to sign the convention and make it part of national law. Portugal, for instance, abolished automatic loss of citizenship for women in 1981, Belgium in 1985, Greece in 1984 and Luxembourg in 1986. Recently, countries, as diverse as the Philippines, the Czech Republic, Romania, Vietnam, Latvia, and Austria have created programmes to actively help women reacquire their original citizenship, which some had lost decades ago. Options to do so also existed on earlier occasions when laws changed. In the period from 1944 until 1948, more than 9,000 women in the USA, for instance, reclaimed the US citizenship they had lost because of their marriage in the first decades of the twentieth century. When Dutch law regarding derivative citizenship changed in 1964, an opportunity was created for women to request their original citizenship back, provided they did so within the year preceding the introduction of the new law. Almost 6,000 women did so (De Hart 2012: 38, 52). The widely used concept of derivative citizenship shows how ideas about juridical and discursive citizenship intertwine, and are gendered. Women are seen as the biological reproducers of ethnic collectivities and the reproducers of the boundaries of national groups. Women are carriers of national identities. Men monopolise the political and military representation of the nation, while women ‘embody’ the nation (Lutz, Phoenix & YuvalDavis 1995: 9-10). Precisely because they embody discursive citizenship, women who out-marry are deprived of juridical citizenship. Over a century, authorities have alienated a segment of their citizens not because they were foreigners, but because they married foreigners. The acts of women were framed in terms of betrayal, sleeping with the enemy and horizontal collaboration. Through the single act of marriage – with marriage being the choice rather than the loss of citizenship – women were alienated from a society that most continued to live in. Integration was a long and winding road, while dissimilation was a walk down the aisle, casting serious doubt on the idea of citizenship as the crown on the integration trajectory. Gendered notions about belonging that affect the construction of citizenship also affect ideas about transnationalism. Immigrant women and men differ considerably in how and why they maintain ties with their country of origin (Bouras 2012). Immigrant women buy gifts to be sent or taken on an annual holiday trip. They phone, text, Skype and send letters and cards. Immigrant men donate money to institutions in the country

Integration and Gender


of origin, for instance, with the aim of building or restoring a mosque or digging a well. They participate in politics oriented towards the country of origin, aiming to change the regime there, and may build a house or buy land in the country of origin. Activities of immigrant men spring from attempts to increase status in the country of origin, or to compensate for status loss in the country of settlement. Immigrant women are less likely to send money, and might well insist on ending money transfers when the last parent has died. They terminate support to brothers and cousins, and invest in the country of residence, rather than the country of origin. They are driven less by status loss (Bouras 2012). In political debates, transnational ties are seen both as a manifestation and as a cause of non-integration: when immigrants choose to invest in housing, land, public goals and relatives in the country of origin, they have themselves to blame for their poverty in the country of settlement. If their poverty is a choice, authorities may choose to refrain from support. At the same time ‘their’ poverty is seen as ‘our’ problem, and hence reason for protests and complaints. Some of the accusations regarding living in two worlds can be avoided by acquiring juridical citizenship and severing ties that are grouped under the banner of transnationalism (stop sending money, refrain from buying land or a house). But accusations regarding feelings of belonging are less easily countered. Men, with their formalised ties, can more easily escape this criticism than women with their personal or informal ties.

Transnational ties

Spatiality Migrants or minorities shape urban landscapes into places of belonging that allow them to feel at home. They do this, for instance, by opening businesses. Immigrants and minorities claim the streets if they are excluded from juridical citizenship. There are differences according to gender in access to space and to mobility – for instance, with men driving cars and women walking or using public transportation. Even when men and women belong to the same immigrant group and live in the same space, they need not move within the same space or do so at the same time or show the same mobility. It is usually young men who claim space via expressing their masculinity (Ehrkamp 2008). Thus, spaces are gendered. Access to space is neither open nor equal. The private sphere is frequently portrayed as the site of (immigrant) women’s oppression. Public space is, however, not isolated from private space, and the boundaries between public and private spaces are fluid. Immigrant men’s expressions of masculinities in public space turn certain areas of cities into spaces that immigrant women try to avoid (Ehrkamp 2013), either because they are criticised when they pass or because they feel controlled. The struggle for citizenship (juridical

Claim to space


Manifestation of class


Marlou Schrover

or discursive) and for political rights is related to access to public space: it is a necessary condition for civic participation, or the ability to exercise citizenship (Ehrkamp 2008). The idea that spatial concentration could be used as a measure of integration dates back to the days of the Chicago School, when spatial distance was first used as a measure of social distance (see Schrover & Van Lottum 2007 for references). Integration was judged by looking at the dispersion of immigrants over neighbourhoods (Gordon 1964). Later authors continued to see spatial integration as a salient dimension of the integration process (South, Crowder & Chavez 2005). The reasoning is also reversed: if dispersion means integration, then concentration is likely an indication of ethnic community formation (Hwang 1991). Community is often conceptualised in terms of bounded space, which denies that communities may exist outside of spatial boundaries (Zecker 2004). Spatiality should not be equated with community because support and loyalty can exist without reference to a locality. Immigrants may live concentrated in one neighbourhood without forming a community, and they may form a community without living in the same space (Scherzer 1992). Concentration is related to class: poverty enforces concentrations because it reduces choice (Massey & Eggers 1990). If immigrant communities are class homogeneous, spatial concentrations may be mistaken as a measure of ethnicity and non-integration, when in fact they are a manifestation of class. Immigrant men and women from the same group need not live in the same geographical space. Employers housed the early guest workers in North-Western Europe centrally in all-male communities of miners, dockworkers or factory workers. Nurses from the Philippines were housed by their employers in all-female boarding houses near hospitals, while sailors from the Philippines formed all-male communities aboard ships (McKay 2007). Domestic servants providing live-in care, for instance, in Spain and Italy (Gratton 2007) – a sector that has become more important in recent decades – live in the (upper or middle class) households and neighbourhoods of their employers. This type of job decreases geographical mobility, but may serve as a ‘bridging occupation’ (Bras 1998), offering women opportunities for upward social mobility they would not have access to otherwise.

Immigrant organisations In the 1960s and 1970s, guest-worker migration led to a unique masculinisation of migration in North-Western Europe (Schrover 2013a). This migration was also better organised and more class homogenous than earlier migrations. As a rule, immigrant men tend to join or establish organisations that are oriented towards the country of origin, whereas immigrant women favour organisations aimed at the country of settlement

Integration and Gender


(Jones-Correa 1998). Immigrant men set up formal organisations, while immigrant women tend to organise informally and less visibly (Schrover & Vermeulen 2005). Some of the immigrant men experience downward social mobility after migration, which they compensate for by joining organisations in which their (former) status is recognised and bolstered. Immigrant women who did not work prior to their migration but do enter the workforce after migration experience a gain in status and feel less need to fall back on homeland-oriented organisations (Jones-Correa 1998). The guest workers set up organisations that catered to their wishes, frequently helped by non-immigrant volunteers (many of them students), churches (usually Catholic churches since most of the early guest workers came from predominantly Catholic countries) and employers. The arrival of women and children coincided with a large proportion of the men becoming unemployed. The men had been recruited in the 1960s and 1970s for sectors and industries in which work disappeared in the 1980s. When the women and children arrived – after the end of the guest-worker migration regime – they found an organisational infrastructure in place that suited immigrant men. By that time the Catholic Church had withdrawn from the scene due to the secularisation of society and because many of the Catholic guest workers had returned to their country of origin and been replaced by migrants from Islamic countries. Employers, who had combined organisation of guest workers with centralised housing (as was common) disappeared too as organizers when the guest workers became unemployed, and factories and mines closed. Mosques became more important, but more for men than for women. In the 1970s several countries, including the Netherlands and Belgium, had subsidised immigrant organisations, hoping that these would be a launch pad for emancipation of immigrants, civil participation and integration (Schrover & Vermeulen 2005). The economic crisis of the 1980s led to severe cutbacks in these subsidies (Schrover 2013b). Organisations competed for subsidies, and emphasised their activities as typically Turkish or Moroccan. As subsidies dwindled, they were focused on immigrant women rather than on immigrant men, magnifying differences between men and women (Schrover 2010).

Organisational infrastructure

Multiculturalism In 1999, Moller Okin asked whether multiculturalism was bad for women. This question led to extensive academic debate. In countries as diverse as the UK, Sweden, Germany, Australia, the Netherlands, the USA and Canada, multiculturalism had emerged starting in the 1960s as an ideology and a policy for managing the cultural diversity that had resulted from migration (see also the chapter by Eade & Ruspini in this volume). The multiculturalist policies, pursued in many North-Western European countries

Multiculturalism and women


Burqa bans

Marlou Schrover

after the 1970s, ‘allowed’ immigrants to be different from the rest of the population, and even encouraged them to hold on to their language and culture (Schrover 2010). This policy created, stressed and maintained differences between immigrant men and women because it reproduced stereotypical ideas about the roles of men and women in countries of origin. All migrant women were seen as wives and mothers. When the idea of the temporariness of the guest-worker migration was dropped, discourse shifted to religion and especially the assumed oppression of women within Islam. Women’s issues – such as the wearing of headscarves – took centre stage in debates on integration (Rottmann & Marx Ferree 2008). Oppression of women within Islam emerged as a major issue in several countries. This problematisation built on Orientalist ideas about protectionism, which were formulated within the colonial context of the nineteenth century. In this view ‘superior’ Christian societies were portrayed as rescuers and liberators of Muslim women from Muslim men (Said 1978; Stabile & Kumar 2005). These ideas were integrated into a perspective in which European women served as the standard against which women from elsewhere were measured (Lutz 1997). Muslim women are currently viewed in North-Western European countries as the prototype of immigrant women. They are perceived as exploited victims, handicapped by their cultures of origin. Islam and Western values are presented as incompatible (Molokotos Liederman 2000). Debates are characterized by gross overestimates of the number of women wearing headscarves or other forms of veiling. This discourse – to which both Western feminists and right-wing politicians contribute – uses worn stereotypes about nonWestern women as religious, family-oriented, traditional and backward (Mohanty 1988). In recent years there has been an increase in the number of publications on headscarves and veils (with many publications coming out of the large VEIL project: Values Equality & Differences in Liberal Democracies, see Molokotos Liederman 2000; McGoldrick 2005; Lettinga 2011; Rosenberger & Sauer 2012). The shift in the academic literature reflects changes in public and political debates about headscarves or veils, and the introduction of ‘burqa bans’ in countries in which very few women wear face-covering veils (Herrera & Moors 2003; Joppke 2007). Current political arguments against veiling show similarities to those used by British and French colonial authorities in their attempts to legitimise colonial rule (Fanon 1965; Abu-Lughod 2002). Modernising, liberating and emancipating Islamic women, by forcing them to or letting them unveil, was a key aspect of the colonizers’ claim of moral superiority. Western feminists find themselves in a paradoxical position. While they favour women’s choices, they find it hard to view the wearing of headscarves or veiling as a choice, despite what women who make this choice say. Western feminists are not convinced by the claim of Muslim feminists that wear-

Integration and Gender


ing a headscarf is a decision that an emancipated Muslim women would make, and they do not respond to critique that Western women give in to the pressure from men into exposing as much flesh as possible (Hussein 2013; Withaeckx & Coene 2013). Islamic feminists accuse Western feminists of colonialist paternalism (Spohn 2013). Western feminists find themselves allied with Western populist or right-wing politicians, who in the Western context do not generally support women’s rights (Winter 2006). The move towards placing headscarves and veils at the centre of political debates is part of a shift that relates to integration policies. Such policies have been labelled a failure in several North-Western European countries. The emphasis has moved towards issues of religion rather than class, discrimination or socio-economic factors. Integration is thus rendered a personal choice, removing responsibly from authorities (Roggeband & Verloo 2007).

Islamic feminists

Marital behaviour ‘Import brides’ feature prominently in political and public debates on integration, while ‘import grooms’ do not. Bringing a wife from the country of origin is regarded as an indication of a low level of integration. Marriage migration in combination with endogamy is presented both as the cause and as the consequence of failed integration. Preference for so-called traditional values and the wish to marry an ‘unspoiled’ wife, especially among Turks in North-Western Europe, are said to explain this type of marriage migration. The marriage migration of the 1970s and 1980s was partly the result of an unbalanced sex ratio within immigrant populations (with men outnumbering women). Yet women also ‘import’ husbands from the country of origin, and this cannot be explained by the sex ratio or by ideas about pureness, which are formulated regarding women and not regarding men. An alternative explanation is that the woman’s family stands to gain from this type of marriage migration; the family enables a man (not a woman) to migrate into fortress Europe, and this increases the family’s esteem in the country of origin. Such a view of marriage migration suggests it indicates an orientation towards the country of origin and thus of non-integration. Some suggest that especially better-educated immigrant women may look for men in the country of origin to realise ‘modern’ goals, such as having an independent household since they are not living with their in-laws (who stayed behind in the country of origin). This has been observed for Belgium (Lievens 1999). Later research (González-Ferrer 2006) disproves this assumption: better-educated women did show a propensity to seek a partner in the country of origin, but after marriage they lived in extended households, making it unlikely that this was the situation they were trying to avoid.

Import brides


Hardship rules

Marlou Schrover

Authorities frequently suspect marriage migration as being a cover for labour migration, especially when the migrating partner is a non-Western man (Grillo 2010). Migrating men are suspected of having economic motives for marriage, rather than migrating for love. In an attempt to stimulate integration, and therefore to stop marriage migration, Denmark, Germany, Austria, France, the Netherlands and the UK have introduced restrictions, such as age bars (with minimum ages of 18 to 24), dependent resident status, housing and income requirements, and tests to be taken before migration. Dependent resident status means that partners cannot divorce within a waiting period (of one to four years). If they do, the dependent partner must return to the country of origin. The issue of dependent resident status has led to considerable debates and campaigns focused on women, although men too could get a dependent resident status (few men have in practice). The campaigns have emphasised women being maltreated, enforcing negative perceptions of marriage migration (Schrover 2010). In response to these campaigns Germany, the UK and Norway, among others, introduced so-called hardship rules, or domestic violence and abuse clauses: migrant women should not be forced to bear inhumane treatment within their marriage in order to avoid losing their legal status (Kontos, Haferburg & Sacaliuc 2006; Tyldum & Tveit 2008; Kofman & Meetoo 2008). These debates and policies led to victimisation, especially of Turkish women. This not only affected recently arrived women, but also immigrant women who were long-time residents. The policies were meant to protect women, but hindered rather than stimulated their integration. The marital behaviour of immigrant women and men belonging to the same group is not the same; the public and political debate related to their marital behaviour and integration policies is also different (Bonjour & De Hart 2013). Immigrant women are presented as in need of protection, while immigrant men are seen as perpetrators, who misuse rules regarding marriage migration, as well as abusing innocent immigrant women. Import brides, who are portrayed as young and uneducated, are seen as the root cause of integration problems and presented as pushing the whole group one step back for every two steps it takes forward. Policies aiming to restrict marriage migration are presented as a key element of integration policies. Rather surprisingly, the effect of marriage migration on integration is assumed rather than proven (Lentin et al. 2012).

Education and labour School performance

Researchers have found that immigrant boys do worse than immigrant girls in school (Suárez-Orozco & Baolian Qin 2004). This has, for instance, been shown for Asian, African, Mexican or Latino and Caribbean immigrants in the USA. Boys respond to the idea ‘if they think I am bad, I am

Integration and Gender


going to be bad’ by doing poorly in school. Boys experience more peer pressure that prompts them to reject school. Immigrant girls have more responsibilities at home than boys. They are not allowed to hang around, or date, though they may be allowed to go to the library or attend a study group. The outperformance of immigrant girls over immigrant boys has a lasting effect in life. Several researchers have found that immigrant men earn considerably less than non-immigrant men (controlling for a large list of other factors), but immigrant women do not earn less than nonimmigrant women (Sidanius & Veniegas 2000). It is not clear whether this is an effect of a better education or of immigrant women being less discriminated against than immigrant men. The labour market is segregated according to gender (men and women do not work in the same jobs) and ethnicity (Schrover, Van der Leun & Quispel 2007). Immigrant men have at one time or another dominated in, for instance, mining, agricultural work (harvesting), roadwork, dock work, shipping (as sailors and cabin stewards) and building (e.g., as masons and stucco workers). Immigrant women stereotypically work as domestic servants and care (Moya 2007). There is a vast literature on niching (see the chapter by Kloosterman & Rath in this volume). Less is known about how niching is gendered (Wright & Ellis 2000: 585). Light and Karageorgis (1994) observe that the nature of niching is determined by, amongst other things, the possibilities it offers for family members. When both immigrant men and immigrant women can work in a niche, a closer relationship develops between the group and the economic sector. The possibilities for family members to work in niches depend not only on the nature of the sector, but also on work options outside it. When there are many possibilities for both immigrant men and women within the niche, and only few outside it, entrepreneurs can profit from the existence of a large reservoir of cheap labour. This strengthens the success and continuity of the niche. Wright and Ellis (2000: 590) found that immigrant women were less concentrated in immigrant niches than immigrant men. Wright and Ellis assume that differences between immigrant men and women can be explained by differences in networks. The networks of men and women (even those belonging to the same migrant group) are only distantly related. Occupational choices are influenced by the fact that women’s migration patterns are different from those of men, the timing of their migration is different, they encounter different restrictions and many have different reasons for migration. Niching is explained by the fact that immigrants find work through networks. Women’s networks are typically smaller and more homogeneous than are those of men (Moore 1990). Preferences for part-time work, flexible hours and working with ‘your own kind’ (Portes 1994), work in or near the home, work that offers security and stability and the choice to invest less in training and education are all linked more to women than to men



Marlou Schrover

(Hanson & Pratt 1995). Immigrants can monopolise a sector when a link is made between pre-migratory skills and a specialisation. Preconceptions about the qualities of newcomers can lead to exclusion, but can also reserve an economic sector for them in a more positive sense. Ethnicisation is a process whereby an association develops between a certain economic sector and an ethnic group. In the gendered labour market, we see a process that is similar to that of ethnicisation: feminisation. This means that an association develops between low status, the reward for the job and the fact that women do it. There is a clear parallel between the processes of ethnicisation and feminisation. Both processes intersect. Immigrant men tend to counter the restrictions they face on the labour market by seeking opportunities through self-employment. Immigrant women are much less likely to be entrepreneurs (Light 2007). Overall, both immigrant men and women are confined to a limited range of labour market sectors. Within these, they are concentrated in lower status, instable, insecure, dirty and dangerous jobs.


Multiple discriminations

How, by whom and why are differences made according to gender in connection to integration? Not surprisingly there are differences between immigrant men and women in all of the areas addressed in this chapter: belonging, citizenship and transnationalism, spatiality, immigrant organisations, multiculturalism, marital behaviour, and education and labour. Several factors were introduced to explain differences according to gender in migration: gendered networks, gendered labour markets, and ideas about belonging and risk (to societies, to immigrants, or to immigrant women). It is clear that neither the pace nor the trajectory of integration is the same for immigrant men and women. Furthermore, differences according to gender intersect with the differences according to class, ethnicity/race, religion, age, sexuality, (dis)ability, et cetera. Attempts to grasp and describe all differences lead the reader into a morass, especially when the fluidity of categories, situationality and temporality are brought into the equation. However, not all differences make a difference. Some differences are problematised and thus affect policies. They constitute reason to call for (policy) change, intervention or protection. When it comes to integration policies, authorities are attracted to the ‘quadruple whammy’: women who are discriminated against due to ethnicity, gender, class and religion (especially if they adhere to Islam). ‘Multiple discrimination’ is an attractive concept for policymakers because it presents inequalities as similar, suggesting that a similar approach could offer a solution to all problems. Advocates of women’s rights, minority rights and gay rights buy into this idea and employ similar discourses and strategies. Overall, the victimised

Integration and Gender


immigrant woman provides the strongest counter-identity. ‘She’ is everything ‘we’ are not. This idea enshrines the notion of a cohesive society while protectionist claims muster societal support, thus enforcing the idea of a caring society.

References Abu-Lughod, L. (2002), ‘Do Muslim women really need saving? Anthropological reflections on cultural relativism and its others’, American Anthropologist 104 (3): 783-790. Anthias, F. (2013), ‘Moving beyond the Janus face of integration and diversity discourses: Towards an intersectional framing’, The Sociological Review 61: 323-343. Bader, V. M. (1999), ‘Citizenship of the European Union: Human rights, rights of citizens of the Union and of member states’, Ratio Juris 12 (2): 153-181. Bonjour, S. & B. de Hart (2013), ‘A proper wife, a proper marriage: Constructions of “us” and “them” in Dutch family migration policy’, European Journal of Women’s Studies 20 (1): 61-76. Boris, E. (2005), ‘On the importance of naming: Gender, race and the writing of policy history’, The Journal of Policy History 17 (1): 72-92. Bourdieu, P. (1994), ‘Rethinking the state: Genesis and structure of the bureaucratic field’, Sociological Theory 12 (1): 1-18. Bouras, N. (2012), Het Land van Herkomst: Perspectieven op Verbondenheid met Marokko, 1960-2010. Hilversum: Verloren. Bras, H. (1998), ‘Domestic service, migration and the social status of women at marriage: The case of a Dutch sea province, Zeeland 1820-1935’, Historical Social Research 23 (3): 3-19. Broughton, C. (2008), ‘Migration as engendered practice: Mexican men, masculinity, and northward migration’, Gender and Society 22 (5, Gendered Borderlands): 568-589. Calavita, K. (2006), ‘Gender, migration, and law: Crossing borders and bridging disciplines’, International Migration Review 40 (1): 104-132. Connell, R.W. (1993), ‘The big picture: Masculinities in recent world history’, Theory and Society 22 (5, Special Issue: Masculinities): 597-623. Crenshaw, K. (1989), ‘Demarginalizing the intersection of race and sex: A black feminist critique of antidiscrimination doctrine, feminist theory, and antiracist politics’, University of Chicago Legal Forum: 139-167. Crul, M. & J. Doomernik (2003), ‘The Turkish and Moroccan second generation in the Netherlands: Divergent trends between and polarization within the two groups’, International Migration Review 37 (4): 1039-1064. Davis, K. (2008), ‘Intersectionality as buzzword: A sociology of science perspective on what makes a feminist theory successful’, Feminist Theory 9 (1): 67-85. De Hart, B. (2006), ‘The morality of Maria Toet: Gender, citizenship and the construction of the nation/state’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 32 (1): 49-68.


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De Hart, B. (2012), Een Tweede Paspoort: Dubbele Nationaliteit in de Verenigde Staten, Duitsland en Nederland. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Doezema, J. (2001), ‘Ouch! Western feminists’ “wounded attachment” to the “third world prostitute”’, Feminist Review 67 (1): 16-38. Ehrkamp, P. (2008), ‘Risking publicity: Masculinities and the racialization of public neighborhood space’, Social & Cultural Geography 9 (2): 117-133. Ehrkamp, P. (2013), ‘“I’ve had it with them!” Younger migrant women’s spatial practices of conformity and resistance’, Gender, Place & Culture: A Journal of Feminist Geography 20 (1): 19-36. España-Maram, L. (2006), Creating Masculinity in Los Angeles’s Little Manila: Working-Class Filipinos and Popular Culture, 1920s-1950s. New York: Columbia University Press. Fanon, F. (1965), A Dying Colonialism. New York: Grove Press. Foucault, M. (1991), ‘Governmentality’, in G. Burchell, C. Gordon & P. Miller (eds), The Foucault Effect: Studies in Governmentality. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 87-104. Frager, R. A. (1999), ‘Labour history and the interlocking hierarchies of class, ethnicity, and gender: A Canadian perspective’, International Review of Social History 44: 217-247. Franken, M., A. Woodward, A. Cabó, & B. M. Bagilhole (2009), Teaching Intersectionality: Putting Gender at the Centre. Utrecht: Athena. González-Ferrer, A. (2006), ‘Who do immigrants marry? Partner choice among single immigrants in Germany’, European Sociological Review 22 (2): 171-185. Gordon, M. M. (1964), Assimilation in American Life: The Role of Race, Religion, and National Origins. New York: Oxford University Press. Gouda, F. (2003), ‘“Add a chapter on women and stir”: Weemoedige overpeinzingen bij IJkpunt 1900’, Tijdschrift voor Sociale Geschiedenis 29 (1): 54-63. Gratton, B. (2007), ‘Ecuadorians in the United States and Spain: History, gender and niche formation’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 33 (4): 581-600. Grillo, R. (2010), ‘The family at issue: The forced marriage debate in the UK’, in A. Kraler, E. Kofman, M. Kohli & C. Schmoll (eds), Gender, Generations and the Family in International Migration. IMISCOE Research. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 59-74. Hacker, H. M. (1951), ‘Women as a minority group’, Social Forces 30 (1): 60-69. Haig, D. (2004), ‘The inexorable rise of gender and the decline of sex: Social change in academic titles, 1945–2001’, Archives of Sexual Behavior 33 (2): 87-96. Hancock, A. M. (2007), ‘When multiplication doesn’t equal quick addition: Examining intersectionality as a research paradigm’, Perspectives on Politics 5 (1): 63-79. Hanson, S. & G. Pratt (1995), Gender, Work and Space. London: Routledge. Herrera, L. & A. Moors (2003), ‘Banning face veiling: The boundaries of liberal education’, ISIM Newsletter 13 (December): 16-17. Hollingshead, A. B. (1952), ‘Trends in social stratification: A case study’, American Sociological Review 17 (6): 679-686.

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Hover, E. J. (1932), ‘Citizenship of women in the United States’, The American Journal of International Law: 701-719. Hussein, S. (2013), ‘From rescue missions to discipline’, Australian Feminist Studies 28 (76): 144-154. Hwang, S. (1991), ‘Ethnic enclosure or ethnic competition: Ethnic identification among Hispanics in Texas’, Sociological Quarterly 32 (3): 469-476. Jenni, K. E. & G. Loewenstein (1997), ‘Explaining the “identifiable victim effect”’, Journal of Risk and Uncertainty 14: 235-257. Jones-Correa, M. (1998), ‘Different paths: Gender, immigration and political participation’, Immigration Migration Review 32 (2): 326-349. Joppke, C. (2007), ‘State neutrality and Islamic headscarf laws in France and Germany’, Theory and Society 36 (4): 313-342. Kennedy, J. C. (2005), De Deugden van een Gidsland: Burgerschap en Democratie in Nederland. Amsterdam: Bert Bakker. Knapp, G.-A. (2005), ‘Reclaiming baggage in fast travelling theories’, European Journal of Women’s Studies 12 (3): 249-265. Kofman, E. & V. Meetoo (2008), ‘Family migration’, in World Migration Report 2008. Geneva: International Organization for Migration, 151-172. Kontos, M., U. Haferburg & A. V. Sacaliuc (2006), Mapping of Policies Affecting Female Migrants and Policy Analysis: The German Case. Working Paper No. 1. Frankfurt: FeMiPol Projekt, Institut für Sozialforschung an der Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität. Lentin, A., G. Titley, M. de Leeuw & S. van Wichelen (2012), ‘Civilizing migrants: Integration, culture and citizenship’, European Journal of Cultural Studies 15 (2): 195-210. Lettinga, D. N. (2011), Framing the Hijab: The Governance of Intersecting Religious, Ethnic and Gender Differences in France, the Netherlands and Germany. Amsterdam: VU University Press. Lievens, J. (1999), ‘Family-formation migration from Turkey and Morocco to Belgium: The demand for marriage partners from the countries of origin’, International Migration Review 33: 717-744. Light, I. (2007), ‘Women’s Economic Niches and Earnings Inferiority: The View from the Ethnic Economy’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 33: 541-557. Light, I. & S. Karageorgis (1994), ‘The ethnic economy’, in N. J. Smelser and R. Swedberg (eds), The Handbook of Economic Sociology. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 647-670. Lutz, H. (1997), ‘The limits of European-ness: Immigrant women in fortress Europe’, Feminist Review 57: 93-111. Lutz, H., A. Phoenix & N. Yuval-Davis (eds) (1995), Crossfires: Nationalism, Racism and Gender in Europe. London: Pluto Press. MacLeod, M. & E. Saraga (1988), ‘Challenging orthodoxy: Towards a feminist theory and practice’, Feminist Review 28: 16-55. Marshall, T. H. (1950), Citizenship and Social Class and Other Essays, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


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Massey, D. S. & M. L. Eggers (1990), ‘The ecology of inequality: Minorities and the concentration of poverty, 1970-1980’, The American Journal of Sociology 95: 11531188. McCall, L. (2005), ‘The complexity of intersectionality’, Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 30 (3): 1771-1800. McGoldrick, D. (2005), ‘Multiculturalism and its discontents’, Human Rights Law Review 5 (1): 27-56. McKay, S. C. (2007), ‘Filipino sea men: Constructing masculinities in an ethnic labour niche’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 33 (4): 617-633. Minnis, M. S. (1953), ‘Cleavage in women’s organizations: A reflection of the social structure of a city’, American Sociological Review 18 (1): 47-53. Mohanty, C. (1988), ‘Under Western eyes: Feminist scholarship and colonial discourses’, Feminist Review 30: 61-88. Moller Okin, S. (1999), ‘Is multiculturalism bad for women?’, in J. Cohen, M. Howard & M. Nussbaum (eds), Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women? Princeton: Princeton University Press, 9-24. Molokotos Liederman, L. (2000), ‘Religious diversity in schools: The Muslim headscarf controversy and beyond’, Social Compass 47 (3): 367-382. Money, J. (1955), ‘Hermaphroditism, gender and precocity in hypera-drenocor­ ticism: Psychologic findings’, Bulletin of the Johns Hopkins Hospital 96: 253264. Moore, G. (1990), ‘Structural determinants of men’s and women’s personal networks’, American Sociological Review 55: 726-35. Moya, J. M. (2007), ‘Domestic service in a global perspective: Gender, migration and ethnic niches’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 33 (4): 559-579. Nawyn, S. J. (2010), ‘Gender and migration: Integrating feminist theory into migration studies’, Sociology Compass 4 (9): 749-765. Nobil Ahmad, A. (2011), Masculinity, Sexuality and Illegal Migration: Human Smuggling from Pakistan to Europe. Aldershot: Ashgate. Noddings, N. (2001), ‘The care tradition: Beyond “add women and stir”’, Theory Into Practice 40 (1): 29-34. Phoenix, A. & P. Pattynama (2006), ‘Intersectionality’, European Journal of Women’s Studies 13 (3): 187-192. Portes, A. (1994), ‘The informal economy and its paradoxes’, in N. J. Smelser and R. Swedberg (eds), The Handbook of Economic Sociology. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 426-449. Quay Hutchison, E. (2003), ‘Add gender and stir? Cooking up gendered histories of modern Latin America’, Latin American Research Review 38 (1): 267-287. Roggeband, C. & M. Verloo (2007), ‘Dutch women are liberated, migrant women are a problem: The evolution of policy frames on gender and migration in the Netherlands, 1995-2005’, Social Policy & Administration 41 (3): 271-288. Rosenberger, S. & B. Sauer (2012), Politics, Religion and Gender: Framing and Regulating the Veil. Abington: Routledge. Rottmann, S. B. & M. Marx Ferree (2008), ‘Citizenship and intersectionality: Ger-

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man feminist debates about headscarf and antidiscrimination laws’, Social Politics: International Studies in Gender, State & Society: 15 (4): 481-513. Ryan, L. & W. Webster (2008), Gendering Migration: Masculinity, Femininity and Ethnicity in Post-War Britain. Aldershot: Ashgate. Said, E. (1978, 2003), Orientalism. New York: Vintage Books. Scherzer, K. A. (1992), The Unbounded Community: Neighborhood Life and Social Structure in New York City, 1830-1875. Durham and London: Duke University Press. Schinkel, W. (2008), ‘The moralisation of citizenship in Dutch integration discourse’, Amsterdam Law Forum 1 (1). Available at printerFriendly/56/77. Schrover, M. & F. Vermeulen (2005), ‘Immigrant organisations: Introduction’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 31 (5): 823-832. Schrover, M. (2009), ‘Family in Dutch migration policy, 1945-2005’, The History of the Family 14: 191-202. Schrover, M. (2010), ‘Why make a difference? Migration policy and making differences between migrant men and women (the Netherlands 1945-2005)’, in M. Schrover & E. J. Yeo (eds), Gender, Migration and the Public Sphere, 1850-2005. New York: Routledge, 76-96. Schrover, M. (2013a), ‘Feminization and problematization of migration: Europe in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries’, in D. Hoerder & A. Kaur (eds), Proletarian and Gendered Mass Migrations: A Global Perspective on Continuities and Discontinuities from the Nineteenth to the Twenty-First Centuries. Leiden: Brill, 103-131. Schrover, M. (2013b), ‘Multiculturalism, dependent residence status and honour killings: Explaining current Dutch intolerance towards ethnic minorities from a gender perspective (1960-2000)’, in Marlou Schrover & Deirdre Moloney, Gender, Migration and Categorisation: Making Distinctions between Migrants in Western Countries, 1900-2010. IMISCOE Research. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 231-254. Schrover, M. & E. J. Yeo (2010), ‘Introduction: Moving the focus to the public sphere’, in M. Schrover & E. J. Yeo (eds), Gender, Migration and the Public Sphere, 1850-2005. New York: Routledge, 1-13. Schrover, M. & J. van Lottum (2007), ‘Spatial concentrations and communities of immigrants in the Netherlands, 1800-1900’, Continuity and Change 22 (2): 215252. Schrover, M., J. van der Leun & C. Quispel, (2007), ‘Niches, labour market segregation, ethnicity and gender’, Journal of Ethnicity and Migration Studies 33 (4): 529-540. Schrover. M. & D. M. Moloney (eds) (2013), Gender, Migration and Categorisation: Making Distinctions between Migrants in Western Countries, 1900-2010. IMISCOE Research. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Scott, J. W. (1986), ‘Gender: A useful category of historical analysis’, American Historical Review 91 (5): 1053-1075.


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Scott, J. W. (1988), Gender and the Politics of History. New York: Columbia University Press. Sidanius, J. & R. C. Veniegas (2000), ‘Gender and race discrimination: The interactive nature of disadvantage’, in S. Oskamp (ed.), Reducing Prejudice and Discrimination: The Claremont Symposium on Applied Social Psychology. Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 47-69. Sinke, S. (2006), ‘Gender and migration: Historical perspectives’, International Migration Review 40 (1): 82-103. South, S. J., K. Crowder & E. Chavez (2005), ‘Migration and special assimilation among US Latinos: Classical versus segmented trajectories’, Demography 42 (3): 497-521. Spohn, U. (2013), ‘Sisters in disagreement: The dispute among French feminists about the “burqa ban” and the causes of their disunity’, Journal of Human Rights 12 (2): 145-164. Stabile, C. A. & D. Kumar (2005), ‘Unveiling imperialism: Media, gender and the war on Afghanistan’, Media Culture Society 27 (5): 765-782. Suárez-Orozco, C. & D. Baolian Qin (2004), ‘The cultural psychology of academic engagement: Immigrant boys’ experiences in US schools’, in N. Way & J. Chu (eds), Adolescent Boys: Exploring Diverse Cultures of Boyhood. New York: New York University Press, 295-316. Tyldum, G. & M. Tveit (2008), Someone Who Cares: A Study of Vulnerability and Risk in Marriage Migration from Russia and Thailand to Norway. Fafo Report 26. Oslo: Fafo. Verloo, M. (2006), ‘Multiple inequalities, intersectionality and the European Union’, European Journal of Women’s Studies 13 (3): 211-228. Volpp, L. (2006), ‘Divesting citizenship: On Asian American history and the loss of citizenship through marriage’, Immigrant and Nationality Law Review 52: 397476. Walaardt, T. (2013), ‘New refugees? Manly war resisters prevent an asylum crisis in the Netherlands, 1968-1973’, in M. Schrover & D. M. Moloney (eds), Gender, Migration and Categorisation: Making Distinctions between Migrants in Western Countries, 1900-2010. IMISCOE Research. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 75-104. Walby, S., J. Armstrong & S. Strid (2012), ‘Intersectionality: Multiple inequalities in social theory’, Sociology 46: 224-240. Winter, B. (2006), ‘Religion, culture and women’s human rights: Some general political and theoretical considerations’, Women’s Studies International Forum 29 (4): 381-393. Withaeckx, S. & G. Coene (2013), ‘“Glad to have honour”: Continuity and change in minority women’s lived experience of honour’, Journal of Gender Studies: 1-15. Wright, R. & M. Ellis (2000), ‘The ethnic and gender division of labor compared among immigrants to Los Angeles’, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 24 (3): 583-600.

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Zecker, R. (2004), ‘Where everybody goes to meet everybody else: The translocal creation of a Slovak immigrant community’, The Journal of Social History 38 (2): 423-453.

Key reading Abu-Lughod, L. (2002), ‘Do Muslim women really need saving? Anthropological reflections on cultural relativism and its others’, American Anthropologist 104 (3): 783-790. Anthias, F. (2013), ‘Moving beyond the Janus face of integration and diversity discourses: Towards an intersectional framing’, The Sociological Review 61: 323-343. Lettinga, D. N. (2011), Framing the Hijab: The Governance of Intersecting Religious, Ethnic and Gender Differences in France, the Netherlands and Germany. Amsterdam: VU University Press. McCall, L. (2005), ‘The complexity of intersectionality’, Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 30 (3): 1771-1800. Verloo, M. (2006), ‘Multiple inequalities, intersectionality and the European Union’, European Journal of Women’s Studies 13 (3): 211-228.

About the author Marlou Schrover is professor of migration history and social differences at Leiden University. In 2013, she concluded a large (NWO Vici) project on gender and migration. Her recent publications include Illegal Migration and Gender in a Global and Historical Perspective (2008) with Joanne van der Leun, Leo Lucassen and Chris Quispel, Komen en Gaan: Immigratie en Emigratie in Nederland vanaf 1550 (2008) with Herman Obdeijn, Gender, Migration and the Public Sphere, 1850-2005 (2010) with Eileen Janes Yeo, and Gender, Migration and Categorisation: Making Distinctions between Migrants in Western countries, 1945-2010 (2013) with Deirdre M. Moloney. She is co-editor of the five-volume The Encyclopaedia of Global Human Migration (2013) and moderator of H-Migration, a discussion list for migration historians.

Part 2 Immigrant Incorporation in Action

7  Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children Creating Opportunities for ‘New’ Citizens Martha Montero-Sieburth

Summary Economic globalisation has resulted in massive movements of diverse peoples around the world, facilitated by affordable transport networks and seamless worldwide transfer of information, technology and capital. This enormous thrust of international migration in turn has created new social orders and networks and challenged many existing structures in the countries of arrival – particularly in education. Considering how migration is affecting schooling, pedagogy and practices in receiving countries, this chapter (i) presents an overview of challenges in educating migrants and their children; (ii) explains how different migrant cohorts access educational services and follow academic pathways; and (iii) identifies pre-migration and post-migration conditions and adaptation processes which enable or constrain migrant education, integration and economic opportunities. It concludes by highlighting policies, research and practices needed to for schooling young people of migrant origin in this century. Keywords: migrant education, transnationalism, academic pathways, pre-migration and post-migration adaptation, international migration

Changing demographics In 2012, migrants made up 215 million of the world’s population of 7 billion (3.1 per cent).1 One in seven of these migrants was in transit, and 49 per cent were women (IOM 2012; UNCSD 2012). Europe in 2011 had a migrant population of 1.7 million from countries outside of the EU, and 1.3 million 1

The notion of immigrant has different connotations. It is used here to refer to persons who are born in one country but then move to a new country. Their children, no matter where they were born, are still considered immigrants. This chapter also uses the term ‘migrant’ instead of immigrant, as commonly used throughout Europe.

Immigrant population


Reasons for migrating

Martha Montero-Sieburth

citizens of EU-27 states had moved to another member state. The UK received the largest numbers (566,044), followed by Germany (482,422), Spain (457,649) and Italy (385,793), together accounting for 60.3 per cent of all migrants to the EU-27, according to Eurostat data. Some 89 per cent of Europe’s population growth was due to immigration between 1990 and 2000 (Huttova, McDonald & Harper 2008: 19). To compare, 13 per cent of US inhabitants were foreign-born in 2010, corresponding to some 40 million of the USA’s 309.3 million inhabitants, representing an increase of 1.4 million or 4 per cent between 2009 and 2010 (US Census Bureau 2010). Although the global economic crisis slowed migrant flows between 2008 and 2010, immigrant numbers began to rise as of 2011, though some countries, such as Greece, Spain, Portugal and Ireland, experienced moderate emigration (OECD 2012). Over the past 30 years, immigration into Europe has been made up largely of guest workers, immigrants from former colonies and other categories of migrants from Asia, Latin America, North America and the Caribbean. Most immigrants in France and the UK came from former colonies, while most of those in Germany and the Netherlands were brought in as guest workers from Southern Europe, Turkey and Morocco. These immigrant inflows created not only economic opportunities and gains, but also consolidations and concentrations of many permanent ethnic communities which are now well into their third generations. ‘Old’ Europe has thus experienced shifts in its immigrant pools over the decades from workers originating in Southern and Eastern Europe to immigrants who are non-European, non-white, non-Christian and multilingual (Huttova, McDonald & Harper 2009). In European countries that were previously sources of emigration, such as Spain, Italy and Ireland, migrant populations have grown fourfold. They now receive migrants from Eastern and Western Europe, Africa and Latin America (DMIIG 2010). Economic production and services are no longer the major magnet for migration. Today, the desire for new lifestyles is a major driver of migration, fostered by new media and communication flows. Love relationships are also fostered by new media, and access to mass transportation makes cross-border movements relatively easy. ‘Care chains’ have developed in which women work abroad caring for elders and children in other countries. This factor has advanced female migration in particular. Thus, there are many explanations of why immigrants leave their countries of origin for better lives elsewhere. Today’s migrants, according to Penninx (2013), represent a ‘new geography of migration’ consisting of expats, refugees and asylum seekers, skilled workers, international students and undocumented workers from Africa and other regions and countries.

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


Migration’s impact on educational systems Rapid economic globalisation and the resulting influx of new migrants has had an especially strong impact on the structure of the educational systems of receiving countries. Schooling, in addition to providing a formal education, is the traditional means by which nation-states shape societal and cultural norms, mould values of citizenship and, in many cases, shape national identity. Education enculturates normative values, behaviours and beliefs constituted by policymakers and formulated into national programmes and curricula. These are transmitted to sub-groups and future citizens with the goal of maintaining social cohesion. The public policies and core values enacted at the national, regional, provincial, state and local levels become transformed into school practices that address not only learning quality, but also equity, attitudes towards diversity and social justice. The increasing numbers of migrant children who need to be absorbed into educational systems has required new modalities, practices, curricula and strategies. After all, educational success is a major indicator of the ­integration of migrants into their new society and a measure of their future career prospects and social and cultural opportunity structures. These outcomes therefore are dependent on implementation of sound public ­educational policies and an adequate type and quality of schooling (Suárez-Orozco, Suárez-Orozco & Todorova 2008). Research has shown that education also adds to the family and community resources that migrants already have. A bidirectional process is established whereby educational policies representing different stakeholders’ interests are developed, implemented, interpreted and evaluated to effectively deliver learning to students. From the bottom up, students’ families and communities provide the social and cultural structure upon which schooling is built, while also creating the opportunity structures that accrue benefits to both native and immigrant youths (Portes & Fernández-Kelly 2008). According to Gibson and Rios Rojas (2006), education can no longer be accomplished with schooling alone, as learning is influenced by other forces, such as families, community and peers outside of schools. Schooling becomes a mediating factor, helping young migrants to gain a new language and learn skills for gainful employment. Migrant children who fully participate in the schooling of the host country become a template for the third generation. As these youths gain new knowledge and skills, many become intermediaries between their parents and schools, between their grandparents and peers, and in helping their siblings in their academic attainment. Their schooling is thus important not only for their own educational advancement but also for the advancement of others. Globalisation can create social spaces and communicative linkages for migrant youths that enable them to be ‘active cultural workers, reshaping

Schooling as mediator


Martha Montero-Sieburth

and re-contextualising global materials in their particular communities and local settings’ (Lam 2006: 223). Such social spaces and communicative linkages impact the youth identities, as young people interact through media and popular culture and develop social affinities through social networking and development of cultural identities (Montero-Sieburth, Cabrera Pérez, & Espínola Mesa 2010). Migrants may experience transnational activities as a product and process of globalisation: [Identities may extend beyond] membership in a territorial state or nation and its accompanying civic and political claims, toward more encompassing definitions such as universal humanism, membership in a suprastate ... and panreligious solidarity ... [or as] some combination of plural civic and political memberships, economic involvements, social networks, and cultural identities that reach across and link people and institutions in two or more nation-states (Morawska 2007: 149).

Changing educational structure

Increasing heterogeneity

As a consequence of demographic shifts in patterns of migration, children of migrants have entered public schools in massive numbers in the USA and Europe. As a result, administrators and teachers have been faced with structural and budgetary predicaments for which they had not previously planned: expanding and maintaining school facilities, adjusting the sizes of classrooms, hiring additional trained teachers, providing additional grade-level instructional materials, developing supplemental languagelearning courses and materials and finding bilingual or multilingual personnel, conducting parental and community outreach, and analysing the educational background and academic strengths and weaknesses of each child to ensure placements match their competences. Another consequence of the spread of migrants and their families into new communities, especially in cities, is that previously homogeneous neighbourhood schools began to experience not only the diversity and increasing heterogeneity brought by migrants, but also concentrations of migrant students, increasing class sizes and stretching resources. This has oftentimes resulted in the marginalisation of students, ghettoisation of communities and segregation of schools. In both the USA and Europe, segregated schools made up mostly of migrant populations are most prevalent in urban city centres. This implies, in many cases, poor teaching, limited resources and increased student drop outs. In the Netherlands, schools that have a concentration of allochtonen, or foreign youths,2 are 2

Vedder (2006) notes that black schools are identified on the basis of having 50% or more of minority students, or by the proportion of school-aged migrant children in the neighbourhood. However, the Ministry of Education website identifies black schools on the basis of having 70% pupils with low-skilled or

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


unofficially referred to as zwarte (or black schools). But as Vedder (2006) stresses, it is the combination of parental choice, ‘white flight’, along with residential segregation in school neighbourhoods that leads to ‘progressive ethnicisation’ of certain schools, increasing the numbers of ‘black’ schools. How schools perceive such shifting demographics, whether migrants are welcomed or rejected or considered an asset or liability within schools, has consequences that extend beyond the school. As microcosms of larger society, schools that lack adequate human and material resources and knowledge and skills about how best to teach and integrate immigrant students often set into motion practices that result in poor classroom management, lack of leadership development, inadequate teaching, discrimination, bullying and violence, and gang membership. As Huttova, McDonald and Harper (2009: 27) indicate, ‘Education... has become at once a main instrument of integration and at the same time, paradoxically, a means of exclusion.’ While trying to implement the three education policy goals of the Lisbon Strategy – (i) improving the quality and effectiveness of EU education and training systems, (ii) ensuring that education is accessible to all and (iii) opening up education and training to a wider world – Europe has become beset by a ‘weakened social fabric and by many suffering from poverty and social exclusion’ (ibid.).

Generational aspects of migrant education Migrants experience their schooling differently depending on the generation they belong to. Policymakers and researchers further distinguish generational categories reflecting whether a migrant was born in the country of residence or abroad. In the USA, the ‘first generation’ generally refers to migrants who left their country of origin to establish themselves permanently in another country. Many of these migrants have gone through a process of naturalisation. In the USA, the term is also used for the children of immigrant parents or those who are first in the family line to be born in the new country (the US Census uses this definition). However, in Europe, the ‘first generation’ is generally used to describe migrants who are foreign born and have settled in a host country. In the Netherlands, the ‘first generation consists of persons who are born abroad and have at least one parent who is also born abroad. The second generation consists of persons who are born in the Netherlands and have at least one parent who belongs to the first generation. The remaining persons are classified as native’ (Alders 2001: 62).

non-Western parents, citing that black schools are not necessarily ethnically segregated. There are over 300 official black schools in the Netherlands.

Generational differences


Martha Montero-Sieburth

The term ‘1.5 generation’ has been applied to immigrants who were born in the country of origin but then conducted most of their schooling in the host country, with the line drawn by some researchers at the age of 13 and by others later.3 ‘Second generation’ then refers to immigrants born and schooled in the host country, while ‘third generation’ is used to identify the children of second-generation parents who are native in the host country.4 The first generation of migrant adults or youths uses the education system to acquire the host-country language, to experience new ways of life and to gain civic knowledge of the host country in order to enter the labour market or begin a career track. Yet, not all migrants experience the same outcomes and share the same opportunities. Some are able to translate the educational and cultural capital assets they bring from their home countries into favourable situations in their new host country, while others, without prior education and having limited social and cultural capital and language skills, encounter greater challenges (Fernández-Kelly 2008). Portes and Rumbaut (2001) suggest these latter may experience downward mobility, diminishing future options and opportunities.5 The first generation is dependent on knowledge of the host country’s dominant language to navigate society’s day-to-day workings, to find work and to receive medical attention and other social services. Those with some English or proficiency of the dominant language may experience positive interactions, while those without such proficiency may be unable to find work and become further marginalised. The second generation tends to be better educated than their parents (Castles 2009). This results in greater socio-economic success (Card, DiNardo & Estes 1998). However, assessment of 15-year-olds’ performance in mathematics, science, reading and other competencies in 57 industrialised and developing countries measured by the Programme for International




The 1.5 generation concept was suggested by Ruben Rumbaut for those children who arrive, particularly in the USA, during the ages of schooling. In this chapter, I broaden it to include transnational young people who completed their primary schooling in their country of origin, but in being inserted into a new school setting may need to repeat grades or be set back before entering high school. In the Netherlands, either parent having a foreign status plays a role in determining whether a child is considered authentically native versus being a foreigner. It may therefore take up to three generations for one to become authentically native. The Children of Immigrants Longitudinal Study (CILS) is one of the largest longitudinal projects on second-generation adaptation in the USA. Directed by Alejandro Portes of Princeton University and Ruben G. Rumbaut of the University of California-Irvine, it began in 1992. See Portes and Rumbaut (2001).

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


Student Assessment (PISA) shows that even after allowing for parental background, second-generation students remain at a disadvantage. This is most apparent in countries that recruited more guest workers (Castles 2009). The 1.5 or second generation may encounter difficulties similar to those faced by their parents or experience diminished educational achievement in relation to their age of entry in the reception country, the educational background of their parents, the receiving country’s educational system and the types of challenges they need to overcome (Kasinitz et al. 2008). For some, like many Dominicans whose mothers live and work in Spain while they stay behind, the separation they experience can be devastating. They usually reunite anywhere from one to four years later, but reincorporating into a family structure and attending schools in the host countries is not without psychological and educational scars. For many, trying to ‘make it’ in a totally different system may result in demotivation, leading them to drop out of school and attempt to find work instead (Carro, MonteroSieburth & Cabrera 2009). For other youths, even if their parents are uneducated, schooling serves as a link that allows them to negotiate between the culture of their parents and the new culture. At a very early age, they become the facilitators of home issues and everyday social and cultural demands. They act as intermediaries between generations, procuring information, guiding parents to their hospital visits, translating documents and sharing messages and letters, which they can read. Combining the language of the home with that of the school and the community-at-large gets things done and serves to allay the apprehensions, fears and stresses of the first generation. As brokers of cultural and linguistic exchanges, they become the link that may assure the first generation of their place in the new country (Holdaway & Alba 2009). In most countries, 1.5- or second-generation migrant youths are placed into tailored educational programmes matching their age, knowledge, competencies and skills determined using assessments carried out by school administrators and teachers based on national exams. In the Netherlands, a standardised exam (the so-called CITO test)6 plays a large role in such high-stakes testing. Within this 1.5 generation in Europe are children of non-EU migrants who in countries like Ireland find themselves unable to attend tertiary education because of their non-legal status, even though their parents may be residents and even citizens, or because they cannot afford to pay the high costs of tuition. Depending on the national 6

The CITO examination, while not required, is commonly used in the Netherlands to identify the types of programmes that students after completing elementary school can be sorted and tracked into based on their grades and competencies.




Alternative educational programmes

Martha Montero-Sieburth

system of education, there is extensive variation across Europe in placement, programmes and outcomes for students. National placement procedures for students into curricular tracks leading to vocational schooling or university are found in a number of Northern European countries. But in some Southern Europe countries, as in Spain, migrant students are age grouped into transitional or reception programmes implemented by autonomous communities, but in compliance with national educational laws. Migrant students with weak academic skills tend to be placed in vocational educational programmes to impart knowledge and skills which enable participants to graduate and find work. Although such schools typically offer apprenticeships or school-to-work transition curricula, many youths spend excessive time in such programmes, unable to progress or move into other educational levels, oftentimes becoming marginalised and relegated to second-class standing (Crul & Heering 2007; Wolff 2008). Given such consequences, some decide to leave school or simply drop out. They are now becoming part of a new phenomenon, labelled the ‘NiNi generation’,7 attributed to youths who are not studying or working because they cannot continue with their studies, have lost available educational slots or are unemployed and unable to find work. They are fast becoming a ‘lost generation’ throughout the world. In most countries having experienced an influx of migrant students, educational opportunities for migrants are deemed to be the same as they are for native-born youths. The reality, however, is that new migrants, in order to become integrated into the host country, face a set of challenges that goes beyond basic educational supports. They may begin their schooling in one country and continue it in another. While they may have access to tertiary education and university studies, their educational outcomes depend on factors beyond the schoolroom, such as the educational level of their parents, proficiency in the dominant language, and the support provided by family, peers and community members (Suárez-Orozco et al. 2011). In addition, educational systems, as Dronkers, Van del Velden and Dunne (2012) have shown, are not uniformly good or bad but have different consequences for different migrant groups. Some groups are better off in comprehensive systems, while others fare better in moderately stratified systems. At the educational level then, the influx of generations 1, 1.5 and 2 requires responsive policies and schools willing to take up the challenge and adjust their delivery of services to meet the needs of new arrivals, to cultivate solid productive citizens who meet the needs of a country’s future.


This label is being used in Spain and other Spanish-speaking countries, such as Mexico.

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


Pathways and modes of incorporation for migrant students The pathways that migrants take to become acculturated and assimilated into host societies have been either historically conceived or derived from studies of the second generation undertaken by social scientists in the USA and Europe. As researchers attempt to define how host societies accept and incorporate newcomers and manage their increasing diversity (Alba, Reitz & Simon 2012), several models have arisen. These are often framed at a national level, have normative stances and reflect the ideal integration framework for immigrants. Assimilation The straight-line assimilation pathway arose during the Great Wave of Immigration in the USA from 1880 to 1921 and is still prevalent today. It assumes that as immigrants stay over several generations, become permanent residents, learn the host-country language and participate in civic activities, they distance themselves from their root cultures, thereby gaining equal social and economic footing in the mainstream culture. Previous connections to the culture of parents, retained through continued contact, endogamous marriages within their own ethnic group’s community organisations and celebrations and visits to the home country, give way to mother tongue replacement by English and the acquisition of social and cultural capital of peers and dominant groups. In the early twentieth century, schools were recognised as playing a significant role in assimilation, regarded by policymakers and educators of that period as the ‘great social equalizers’. They were seen as contributing to the diminishment of social classes, promoting migrant social advancement and preparing migrants for work, while affording them comforts that many had not known before (Kraut 2001). Migrants learned English through the ‘sink or swim’ philosophy. They worked, learned the 3 R’s – reading, writing and arithmetic – and attended Americanisation classes in schools as the best means to attain the American Dream (Tyack 1974). As Kraut (2001: 129) points out, ‘For all immigrants, Americanization was a struggle to reconcile the ways of the Old World with life in the New’. Alba and Nee (2003) pose the discussion of assimilation not in a linear fashion but as a dynamic and energising two-sided process in which immigrant minorities influence the social majority as they gain ground. However, these authors argue, not everyone will assimilate into the mainstream, and assimilation may occur as an unintended consequence of, for example, a job, education or social networks; but to assimilate requires the aspiration for improvement for subsequent generations and different forms of social and cultural adaptation.

Social equalizers

Two-sided process


Martha Montero-Sieburth

Alba, Reitz and Simon (2012) assert that assimilation is further affected by changes in the social boundaries of individuals or groups of individuals who may experience (i) ‘boundary crossing’, moving into another group without impacting the boundary; (ii) ‘boundary blurring’, clouding of social distinctions; or (iii) ‘boundary shifting’, relocation of a boundary. They point out that the individual or group’s insertion into the labour market, ethno-racial minority status and generational advancements beyond the first to third generations consequently influence the type of social boundary that persists. Alba (2011: 1619) considers the blurring of boundaries for migrants to represent what he calls ‘non-zero-sum mobility’, whereby ‘members of minority groups can advance socio-economically without threatening the life chances that members of the native majority population take for granted for themselves and their children’. Integration

Accept immigrants’ differences

During the past three decades in Europe much has been said about ‘integration’, which is a similar process of mutual accommodation between immigrants and dominant society as that described above. Integration implies that the immigrants’ culture is respected, tolerated and maintained, but immigrants are expected to adapt by owning their share of linguistic, civic and economic responsibilities. Huggonier (2007: 146) suggests a ­‘social contract’ or ‘Republican’ school of thought in the ­receiving ­countries: [whereby] migrants must learn the language, traditions, habits and culture of the host country, often to the detriment of their own culture. The objective was that over two or three generations the original culture would progressively disappear or would become less prevalent than the culture of the host country; integration was the short-term goal, assimilation the long-term one.

Or, as Alba, Reitz and Simon (2012: 52) state: Whereas assimilation defines immigrant success in terms of the reduction of an overall ethnic difference, the alternative European concepts – variously labelled integration, incorporation, or adaptation – focus specifically on the relation between immigrants and core institutions of the host society.

Integration includes participation in all modes of life, from housing to schools, from labour market to politics. Hence, the focus is on migrant groups’ success, equal participation and access to those benefits that reduce social inequalities, such as the welfare state.

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


However, research on type of school enrolment, attendance, achievement, early-school-leaving rates and diplomas presents a bleak picture for migrants compared to their native counterparts (Huttova, McDonald & Harper 2009). The disadvantages evident among minority and migrant groups indicate that the gap in education is widening, creating disparities for the second generation. Migrant students are often tracked into lower vocational education tracks, from where it is more difficult to move ahead academically.


Structural analysis The structural analysis model arose during the 1980s in the USA with John Ogbu (1987, 1992), who critiqued the limitations of sociolinguistic and microethnographic classroom interaction studies in explaining the educational attainment of migrants. Ogbu proposed a cultural and ecological model for analysing economic opportunity structures, and he identified the role of structural institutional obstacles such as racism, disengagement and dissonance between stated aspirations and expectations of students and families in preventing their attainment of academic success (Gobbo 2004). Ogbu observes that voluntary immigrants who came to the USA of their own volition fared better than involuntary immigrants whose ethnic group had been subjugated by conquest, colonisation or domination and had been conditioned through such historical oppression. Gibson (1997: 437-438), who collaborated with Ogbu, notes: European scholars also speak of the children of immigrants as ‘involuntary immigrants’ and ‘voluntary migrants’, both because they point out these children did not choose to migrate and because these secondgeneration youth[s], in some instances, become absorbed into patterns of behaviour that more generally have been associated with involuntary minorities (citing Eldering & Kloprogge 1989 and Suárez-Orozco 1991).

Luciak (2004: 360), who values Ogbu’s ideas as applied to the Roma, the Irish Travellers, and the Muslim minority in Greece, states that Not all minority members who achieve low educational results in European countries are failing in school because of primary cultural and language differences, social class factors or institutional barriers in educational settings. The study of community forces shows that a group’s ­instrumental, relational and symbolic beliefs, about the benefit, value, and meaning of schooling, influences the educational strategies of its members.

Cultural and ecological model


Europe-based research

Martha Montero-Sieburth

In Europe, Crul and Thomson (2007), Crul and Schneider (2008) and Aparicio (2007) have taken up the structural analysis of the second generation. Crul, Thomson and Schneider propose an ‘institutional approach’ that moves the focus away from limited family resources to the types of educational systems found within national contexts, the attributes of such systems and the transition immigrants make to labour markets. Aparicio examines the relationship between educational qualifications, labour market insertion and job promotion. Furthermore, Crul and Mollenkompf (2012),8 in their analysis of young adult children of immigrants in Europe and the USA, explain similarities and differences in educational and economic attainment by focusing on urban aspects: the labour market, neighbourhoods, citizenship participation, welfare benefits and sense of belonging. Unlike ‘the one-nation setting of much US-based research on the second generation’, the performance of the second generation in Europe, according to Crul (2007a, 2007b) and Crul and Schneider (2008), is based on numerous factors, some of which are the following: (i) how the background characteristics of the migrant population augment or diminish perceptions of the human capital introduced into the host country; (ii) the degree to which the destination country differentiates among and between migrant groups; (iii) tracking and routing of second-generation students within the educational system based on national tests, grades and teacher evaluations; (iv) student placements and length of time that students stay in a grade alongside their probability of being promoted or held back; (v) the age at which education begins; (vi) the number of contact hours with teachers during students’ time in school; (vii) the quality of parental and community support at home; (viii) segregation of schools; and (ix) student dropout rates. Based on his research, Crul (2007a) proposes solutions to schooling problems. Some of these are lowering the compulsory schooling age, promoting language acquisition and delaying tracking so as to open more educational options. Among his other suggestions are providing apprenticeship programmes to help students find employment, deterring students from dropping out and encouraging support given by parents, siblings and homework projects. 8

This research builds upon a number of comparative surveys of children of immigrants including: The Study of Children of Immigrants Longitudinal Study (CILS) (Alejandro Portes and Ruben Rumbaut); The Study of the Immigrant Second Generation in Metropolitan New York (ISGMNY) (with Mary Waters and Philip Kasinitz as principal co-investigators); The Immigration and Intergenerational Mobility in Metropolitan Los Angeles Study (IIMMLA) (Ruben Rumbaut and Frank Bean) and The Integration of the European Second Generation (TIES) survey (Maurice Crul and Jens Schneider as principal co-investigators).

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


In addressing 1.5 and second-generation Moroccan, Dominican and Peruvian migrants in schools in Madrid and Barcelona, Aparicio (2007: 1190) notes that the Dominicans are worst off among Latin American migrants in terms of parental education. Few Dominican parents had completed high school (35%) when they arrived in Spain. In Spain only 28 per cent of Dominicans had completed high school. Peruvians arrived with close to 65% having completed high school, but their children did poorly in school. Moroccans, although discriminated, did better in school than the Peruvians who nonetheless are culturally closer to the Spanish. Segmented assimilation The concept of segmented assimilation stresses the contextual, structural, economic and cultural factors that lead students towards positive or negative assimilation. It was introduced by Gans (1992) as a ‘bumpy line theory of ethnicity’9 to explain the decline of the second generation and ethnic adaptation. Students, according to Gans (ibid.), could experience one of three main trajectories: (i) education-driven mobility, based on motivation; (ii) succession-driven mobility, from one generation to another; and (iii) niche improvement, in which migrant children have more dismal prospects and a harder time than middle-class children in succeeding in school. Portes and Zhou (1993) critiqued classic assimilation theory and Portes and Rumbaut (2001) and Rumbaut and Portes (2001) expanded upon it. In their notion of segmented assimilation10 the second and third generations 9

Despite its widespread usage, straight-line assimilation has been criticised as being ‘Anglo conformist’, requiring immigrants to adapt to unchanging middle-class white Protestant values (Brown & Bean 2006). 10 Although segmented assimilation has gained currency in the USA and abroad, it has been criticised in the USA for (i) attributing poor economic outcomes to racialisation when other issues may be more apparent; (ii) misrepresenting oppositional behaviours commonly found among young people; and (iii) not being tested beyond the current second generation, which is still relatively young (Brown & Bean 2006). Furthermore, it has been said to essentialise urban cultures as images of the underclass (Alba & Nee 2003).   In Europe, segmented assimilation has been criticised due to the focus and context of analysis. While longitudinal research of the second generation in the USA has focused on characteristics of ethnic groups, in Europe it has aimed to identify factors within national structures that facilitate acculturation. Thomson and Crul (2007: 1033) argue that America has been blind to the importance of the national context in the lives of the second generation, compared to Europe, where cross-national studies have shown how differing systems of education as well as diverse labour markets produce variable migrant educational outcomes. Segmented assimilation, they say, ‘fails to pay sufficient attention to internal differences within ethnic groups’ because they are addressed as ho-


Different assimilation paths

Martha Montero-Sieburth

are positioned towards different patterns of social, educational and cultural assimilation. Gibson (1997) discussed these patterns as follows: (i) the traditional linear assimilation of upward mobility whereby the immigrant group advances both economically and socially towards integration into the middle class by using their cultural capital to take advantage of available economic resources; (ii) downward assimilation mobility because poor schooling and geographic location in inner cities with limited economic resources and opportunities lead to poverty and underclass status; and (iii) selective assimilation or acculturation11 in which social and cultural capital based on the strength of family and community resources preserves the migrant culture and together with positive economic resources leads to mobility into the middle class. Portes and Hao (2004) and Portes and Rumbaut (2001) argue that those students who reject assimilation develop ‘oppositional’ behaviours in their attitudes and orientation, joining gangs or rebelling, which works against them and spirals them into downward mobility or stagnation. Thus, in applying segmented assimilation, the contextual, structural, economic and mogenous. Furthermore, it is pessimistic, claiming downward assimilation is a permanent feature of specific immigrant communities. Thomson and Crul favour Alba’s (2005) ‘bright’ (sharp divisions between ethnic groups which are neither readily permeable nor can be crossed in different nation-states) and ‘blurred’ (boundaries that are malleable and can be crossed) as explanations that apply to what is happening in Europe, particularly with regard to identity formation of the second generation.   Moreover, segmented assimilation appears not to fit the different trajectories found among Turks and Moroccans. Segmented assimilation, argue Crul and Vermeulen (2003), does not explain why despite the cohesiveness of the Turkish community, Turkish students perform poorly in education and Moroccans, contrary to generalised assumptions, provide girls educational opportunities to study. Aparicio (2007) finds similar segmented assimilation disparities. Peruvians who are the most assimilated of the Latin American groups in Spain have the least intergenerational mobility; that is, they do not move into middle-class status. Yet Moroccans, who are highly discriminated and experience greater distances, have the strongest intergenerational mobility.   De Graf and Van Zenderen (2009) found that segmented assimilation could not be used to explain dropout rates among immigrants youths in the Netherlands. Other factors, they argue, such as the social representation of second-generation migrants, discrimination in the labour market and living in segregated neighbourhoods may contribute to their maladjustment, which deters their dreams for a future. The current discourse in the Netherlands centres on the culture and ethnicity of these youths and not on the structural disadvantages. This has squarely placed the responsibility of adaptation on the shoulders of secondgeneration immigrants themselves while blaming them for their own exclusion. 11 This is similar to Gibson’s (1988) accommodation and acculturation without assimilation.

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


cultural factors that lead students towards positive or negative assimilation need to be analysed. Portes, Fernandez-Kelly and Haller (2009) insist that beyond understanding the trajectories of immigrants who assimilate by changing their language and culture as they acculturate, it must be acknowledged that mainstream culture also evolves by incorporating new and diverse social, cultural and religious aspects.

Pre- and post-migration factors influencing migrant education and adaptation The emphasis of this chapter so far has been to examine the way primary and secondary education drives the processes of acculturation, assimilation and integration of today’s immigrants and their first and second generations. These processes have necessitated in many countries a redefinition of the concept of education itself – its structure, pedagogy and practices. This is a central aspect of the ‘post’-migration reality or situations faced by migrants upon their arrival in the host country. Of equal importance is to study and understand how migrants’ pre-migration reality, formed by schooling, family and social networks, shapes their educational expectations, influences their learning trajectory and leverages their assimilation into the new culture.

Concept of education

Pre-migration assets The cultural and social frame of reference of the departure country is as important as that of the entry country in determining the reception, insertion and assimilation of migrants and their families. Western European perceptions of immigrants from Eastern Europe, for example, are often a key determinant of their reception in Western Europe. Similarly, the image of Mexico, as seen through the eyes of North Americans, may negatively colour judgements of Mexicans coming across the US-Mexican border. Feliciano (2005, 2006a, 2006b), in extensive research based initially on 32 immigrant groups and later expanded by another 30 groups and including data from the Children of Immigrants Longitudinal Study in the USA, identifies three significant pre-migration factors: (i) pre-migration educational selectivity in migrants’ country of origin, (ii) educational levels and (iii) timing of immigration. Pre-migration educational selectivity provides resources that help immigrants to thrive and position themselves in privileged situations similar to those of the dominant mainstream culture in the host country. Higher pre-migration educational status feeds higher expectations. Even members of the group who do not have as much schooling may explore further education post-migration, thus confirming the segmented assimilation theory´s group-level process and outcome theory after migration.

Pre-migration factors


Background characteristics

Martha Montero-Sieburth

In research on the Afro-Surinamese and Indo-Surinamese in the Netherlands, Van Niekerk (2003) compares culturally different immigrants from the same country who settle in one and the same host country. Although she finds socio-economic advancement to be limited among these groups, the Afro-Surinamese tend to gravitate towards an oppositional subculture, whereas the Indo-Surinamese, even without an ethnic economy, do well in educational terms. Van Niekerk suggests that this is due to pre-migration historical legacies as Africans and East Indians in Surinam and to the values and culture each group carries from their colonial influences. Crul (2007a) identifies the background characteristics of the immigrant population, especially the low levels of human capital introduced into the host country, and the context of the country of destination as influencing the performance of second-generation students of different immigrant groups. Dronkers, Van der Velden and Dunne (2012) find that migrant students from privileged socio-economic backgrounds perform better in comprehensive educational systems. Dronkers and De Heus (2010) find that individual backgrounds of immigrants, parental capital and societal characteristics, guest-worker origin and histories of the destination countries were far more influential on educational performance than the characteristics of the educational system. They conclude that Europe experiences more negative than positive selectivity of immigration. This may be a factor in the difficulties encountered by immigrants in Europe, compared to the relatively greater adaptability immigrants experience in the USA. De Heus and Dronkers (2010) find that immigrant students from dominant Eastern-religion countries (Hinduism, Buddhism) perform better than comparable immigrant students originating from Christian countries or those without a dominant religion, whereas children from Islamic countries perform worse. Migrants from non-Islamic Asian countries experience higher educational achievement – and this has been empirically shown not to be attributable to their working harder or having experienced an authoritarian education system. Tartakovsky (2009) conducted a three-year longitudinal study of adolescent migrants from Russia and the Ukraine who emigrated to Israel without their parents. His findings demonstrate that the cultural identities of immigrants result not only from acculturation in the new country, but are partly formed in the pre-migration period and transformed over time. Depending on the discrimination they perceived after their migration to the host country, these youths experienced several stages of transformation. Pre-migration, they devalued their homeland and idealised the host country. In the first two years post-migration, they were disillusioned with the host country, which contributed to partial restoration of their homeland identity. In the third year post-migration, they formed what Tartakovsky (ibid.) labels ‘an inconsistent bi-cultural identity’ of adaptation. This study, a constructivist approach to cultural identities, exemplifies the

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


hybridity and flexibility found in the construction of new identities while carrying over aspects of culture and identity from the pre-migration stage. Another important pre-migration determinant of future success and acculturation is the educational levels of a migrant’s parents and family members. Literate parents are able to convey ideas, participate more actively in their children’s schooling, help with homework and pass on their own learning. If parents, particularly mothers, are illiterate, students’ reading and writing skills, even in their native language, becomes a struggle that also undermines second language learning (Gándara & Rumberger 2009). Stevens (1999: 573) confirms that because language learning is a social interaction process, youngsters younger than age 5 are able to be proficient second language learners in adulthood yet ‘decay in L2 learning appears to start in early childhood and to continue through childhood and adolescence’. The age at immigration, then, together with influences such as the family’s educational level and involvement affect the ability to learn a second language. Migrant youths who are challenged at an early age to develop skills and cognitive and academic repertoires are more likely to be ready for school learning (Crul & Vermeulen 2003; Suárez-Orozco, Suárez-Orozco & Todorova 2008). Psychological and socio-economic circumstances, for example, lack of cognitive and language development in family interactions, certain cultural beliefs, and the linguistic and educational consequences of bilingualism, may become ‘risk’ factors for low-income and ethnic minority status. While minority status alone may not be decisive, if combined with other risks, as Leseman (2007) indicates, negative educational outcomes may result. Exposure to stimulating and energising preschool learning that is ongoing and continuous is likely to benefit such migrant pupils. But as Leseman (ibid.) also shows, a model that combines such activities with engagement of parental support is most effective. For the best chance of long-term effects, he argues for an early start (at or before age 3), along with a multi-systemic quality approach that combines both a child-centred developmental preschool with parent involvement, education and family support. ‘[T]he higher the dose, the more sizeable the long term effects’, writes Leseman (ibid.: 8).

Family’s educational level

Post-migration reality Immigrant young people need relationships with both peers and teachers to build upon for a strong learning environment in which students are consciously engaged in learning (Fredericks 2004). Gibson, Gandara and Koyama (2004) show that peers’ influence can be positive or negative. In their positive incarnation, peers serve as role models and engender camaraderie, group cohesiveness, social connections and a sense of belonging

Peers’ influence


Teacher expectations

Martha Montero-Sieburth

in the school environment – all important factors in determining students’ engagement in learning. Suárez-Orozco, Pimentel and Martin (2009) find supportive school-based relationships strongly contribute to good academic performance. Teacher expectations are also critical in determining students’ chances of learning. Espínola Mesa’s (2007) study of teacher expectations of English language learners (ELL) in the USA confirms that ELL teachers often consider the difficulties these students face in learning English, decide they have limited chances for success, then go on to expect a low level of performance. Findings such as these bear out the normalisation theory advanced by Noguera (2003), in which educators deem student failure as normal, based on their own perceptions of students as lacking opportunities. Social class and cultural capital are transferable resources in the advancement of second generation migrants, according to numerous researchers on both sides of the Atlantic (Crul 2007a; Fernández-Kelly 2008; Portes and Fernández 2008). Using Bourdieu’s notion of ‘habitus’, Fernández-Kelly (2008) asserts that embodied knowledge, even in the case of lowincome migrants, is transferred from country of origin and can be used to achieve upward mobility. These knowledge assets exist beyond the family and school-related dynamics and include the use of (i) cognitive correspondence, which is ‘the engine that encodes culture and propels performance’ (ibid.: 129), (ii) positive emulation, which is the unconscious adoption of signs, gestures and actions that translate into mobilisation, and (iii) active recollection, which is the ability to deploy memories as a process of identity formation. However, when the accumulated embodied knowledge is not energised or productively used, the inverse may occur. Although existing outside the schoolroom, migrant students’ family factors, such as birth order, gender, siblings, familial social roles and networks, motivational messages and encouragement, are significant knowledge embodiments that must be identified, as they play a large part in educational outcomes (Hernández 2004). Schools and communities that offer after-school programmes, counselling and academic tracks that further such embodied knowledge provide improved opportunity structures for advancement. Learning resources within the households of literate parents, such as books, informational materials, and printed and Internet resources, can be leveraged into skills that can be readily transferred to school (Bempechat 1998). The inverse, however, may be true for families where education plays a less central role, particularly if parents come from rural areas and have limited or no education. Educated parents are a bridge to help migrant students better understand what schooling is about in a new school context. Educated parents know what it is like to go to school, to learn different school norms and to decode expectations of teachers and school administrators.

Challenges in the Education of Migrant Children


Christensen and Stanat (2007) point out that when learning languages, immigrant students are affected by the status of their mother tongue and policies towards languages other than that spoken by the dominant majority. When the language spoken by an immigrant youth at home is viewed as ‘deficient’ in comparison to another high-status language (e.g., English, Dutch, German or French), the likelihood of school engaging that youth in proactive language learning may be reduced. Likewise, the length of time required to acquire a second language is critical. Cummins (1991, 2008) and Hakuta, Butler and Witt (2000) point out that it takes some five to seven years to optimise academic learning in a second language, and such learning is highly contingent on age, practice, exposure, use and functionality. Yet schools may offer insufficient time to learn a language, while providing inadequate support resources for language acquisition and paying little attention to language reinforcement. Compelled to learn a second language in school, migrants comply because they value the additive12 rather than subtractive nature of learning. However, as Cummins (1991) and Hakuta, Butler and Witt (2000) show, schools tend to offer subtractive language learning, which devalues proficiency in the mother tongue, replacing it with the dominant majority language. Some schools prohibit the use of the mother tongue, in so doing, relegating the mother tongue to the home. This action, argue Suárez-Orozcos and Suárez-Orozcos (2009: 67), detracts from and neglects opportunities for immigrant youths to contribute to a ‘multilingual and multicultural society in the age of global interdependence’. Even in schools where language learning resources are present, instructional materials abound and teachers are committed, stigmatisation of immigrant students due to their high concentrations in urban areas or ethnic group often discourages learning. According to DebBurman (2005), being Black and being Hispanic in the USA is associated with lower levels of education in comparison to non-Hispanic whites. The differential is highest for Hispanics, who are close to two years behind. Similar stigmatisation has been documented for Moroccan and Turkish students throughout Europe, particularly in the Netherlands (Verkuyten & Thijs 2002; Verkuyten 1997, 2001, 2005; Driessen & Merry 2011). For some migrant students, the decision to leave school becomes cumulative after experiencing grade repetition and non-attainment of academic achievement. Dropout rates13 are generally identified in Europe by the

12 13

‘Additive’ means the learning of a second language, L2, while still actively maintaining the first language, L1, whereas ‘subtractive’ language learning refers to shifting entirely to L2 without regard for maintaining active L1 proficiency. Dropouts are defined by multiple criteria and hence the term ‘school leaver’ is more commonly used.

Learning second language


Other limitations

Martha Montero-Sieburth

number of young people who leave school without a secondary diploma,14 and there are measurable differences between Northern and Southern Europe. In France, 15 per cent of youths leave school early, whereas in the Netherlands and Belgium 12 per cent do so, made up mostly of those with Moroccan and Turkish backgrounds. Close to 30 per cent drop out in Spain, Italy and Portugal. In the USA, dropout rates range from 10 to 20 per cent in cities (see Cruz 2009). It goes without saying that in schools segregated by race, class or poverty, lacking learning materials and having poorly trained teachers, inadequate school leadership and limited resources, migrant students are often confronted with school violence, low teacher expectations and dwindling opportunities to learn due to disruptions and poor classroom management (Espínola Mesa 2007). Such limitations can be addressed with programmes that offer mentoring, peer tutoring, extended day sessions and after-school activities. But when migrant students especially are confronted with retention, repetition and being held back in grades, the implicit message of failure becomes all too common and hope for a path of continued education from elementary, to secondary and tertiary levels is diminished.

Conclusion From the research presented in this chapter, several conclusions can be drawn related to research, policies and practices. Regarding research, much still needs to be understood about how systems function to educate migrants and produce successful outcomes. Clearly migrant youths need comprehensive educational programmes that respond directly to their schooling needs. Not all educational systems are equal in their content and instructional formats, as different systems have been shown to have different consequences for different migrant groups (Dronkers, Van der Velden & Dunne 2012). Furthermore, as Alba and Waters (2011) indicate, natives of the wealthy societies of the West have advantages in their educational systems over migrants with low incomes and limited human capital. Where inequalities persist, opportunities need to be pursued to offer ‘nonzero-sum’ mobility, enabling members of minority groups to advance. The role of schools and schooling is to provide learning opportunities to help young people become global citizens. Young people’s acquisition of cultural and social capital resources depends, at one level, on the types of relationships that families and communities can forge with schools. At another level, it is dependent on what schools are able to provide, through

14 The OECD reports high school dropout rates by country for 2004 range from 3.7 per cent for Norway to 16.9 per cent for Australia.

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careful implementation and monitoring of human and material resources and educational services. By utilising existing knowledge, minimising tracking and providing early childhood programmes, mentoring, tutoring and after-school and reception programmes, the learning of youths can be energised and benefits reaped from the super-diversity of changing demographics, cities and nations (Crul, Schneider & Lelie 2013). Offering language support, teacher professionalisation and relevant curricula is equally important. Segregated schools have detrimental outcomes, not only in terms of student dropouts, but more importantly, because of the loss of talent. It is critical to understand not only national contexts and different educational systems, but also optimum mechanisms to give immigrant youths a stake in their education. The cumulative literature of both US and European scholars over the past three decades provides ample grounding for educational policies and practices to be put into action.15 The challenges of the twenty-first century are quite transparent, and the education and schooling needed for immigrant youths cannot be less than for other youths. Research can no longer simply address single-group analysis but needs to follow the direction suggested earlier by Ogbu, currently by Alba and others, towards comparative cross-national and longitudinal studies. Only then will we be able to discern what makes for the differences in the learning of immigrant youths. ‘It is imperative to recognize that the world is multicultural and that both multiculturalism and multicultural education are the “normal human experience”’, according to Gibson and Ríos Rojas (2006: 72). Globalisation and transnationalism attest that today’s migrant youths arrive with competencies and skills that should be seen as assets and not liabilities (Spring 2008). Today’s migrants are no longer restricted to nation-states or the regional spaces of yesterday’s immigrants. Rather, they are part of a ‘deterritoralisation’ and displacement of peoples, according to Suárez-Orozco and Qin (2004). The onus to become educated is on migrants, and for those without basic rudiments of reading, writing, speaking, listening and comprehension, decoding what this entails can be an arduous and prolonged journey. Migrant youths need supportive learning environments that can scaffold new knowledge onto knowledge they already have and augment the cultural capital that is demanded by schools in the twenty-first century. Beyond the school, they need human and material resources that reinforce learning and engagement, such as support from parents, peers and their community. Today’s young people need to further their skills beyond the


See See Crul & Mollenkopf (2012); Crul, Schneider & Lelie (2013); and Alba & Waters (2011).

Optimum mechanisms


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ability to comprehend. To make sense of the global influences that permeate their environment, they must develop cognitive, emotional and social skills that prepare them to take their place in an increasingly complex ­multicultural and multinational world (Sussman 2007).

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Chistensen, G. & P. Stanat (2007), Language Policies and Practices for Helping Immigrants and Second-Generation Students Succeed. The TransAtlantic Task Force on Immigration and Integration. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute & Bertelsmann Stiftung. Crul, M. (2007a), Pathways to Success for the Second Generation in Europe. Migration Information Source. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Organization. Crul, M. (2007b), Pathways to Success for the Children of Immigrants. The TransAtlantic Task Force on Immigration and Integration. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute & Bertelsmann Stiftung. Crul, M. (2007c), ‘The integration of immigrant youth’, in M. Suárez-Orozco (ed.), Learning in the Global Era: International Perspectives on Globalization and Education. Berkeley: University of California Press, 213-231. Crul, M. & J. Doomernik (2003), ‘The Turkish and Moroccan second generation in the Netherlands: Divergent trends between polarization within the two groups’, International Migration Review 37 (4): 1039-1064. Crul, M. & H. Vermeulen (2003), ‘The second generation in Europe’, International Migration Review 37 (4): 965-986. Crul, M. & L. Heering (2007), Onderzoeksverslag TIES Survey in Amsterdam en Rotterdam. Amsterdam: The Integration of the European Second Generation. Crul, M. & J. Mollenkompf (eds) (2012), The Changing Face of World Cities: Young Adult Children of Immigrants in Europe and the United States. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Crul, M. & J. Schneider (2008), The Second Generation in Europe: Education and the Transition to the Labour Market. Amsterdam: Open Society Institute. Crul, M., J. Schneider & F. Lelie (2013), Super-Diversity: A New Perspective on Integration. Amsterdam: VU University Press. Cruz, V. (2009), ‘Educational attainment of first- and second-generation immigrant youth: New findings from national longitudinal data’. Class of 2008 Research Brief No. 5. Washington, DC: Urban Institute, Summer Academy for Public Policy Analysis and Research. Cummins, J. (2008), ‘Essay review: Where immigrant students succeed (Petra Stant and Gayle Chistensen, 2006)’, Curriculum Inquiry 38 (4): 494-497. Cummins, J. (1991), ‘Language development and academic learning’, in L. M. Malavé, Language, Culture and Cognition. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters, 161-175. De Graff, W. & K. van Zenderen (2009), ‘Segmented assimilation in the Netherlands? Young migrants and early school leaving’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 32 (8): 1470-1488. De Heus, M. & J. Dronkers (2010), ‘The educational performance of children of immigrants in 16 OECD countries: The influence of educational systems and other societal features of both countries of destination and origin’. Paper presented at Conference on Inequality Measurement and the Progress of Society, 22-23 April, Valletta, Malta. DebBurman, N. (2005), Immigrant Education: Variations by Generation, Age-atImmigration, and Country of Origin. New York: LFB Scholarly Publishing.


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DMIIG (Diversity, Migration and Integration Interest Group) (2010), Diversity, Migration and Integration Interest Group meeting, Education as a Motor for Integration, European Foundation Centre, 19-20 October, Brussels. Driessen, G. & M. S. Merry (2011), ‘The effects of integration and generation of immigrants on language and numeracy achievement’, Educational Studies 37 (5): 581-592. Dronkers, J. & M. de Heus (2010), ‘Negative selectivity of Europe’s guest-worker immigration? Educational achievement of immigrant children compared with native children in their origin counties’. The Authors: Volume Compilation. London: Portland Press, 89-104. Dronkers, J., R. van der Velden & A. Dunne (2012), ‘Why are migrant students better off in certain types of educational systems than in others?’ European Educational Research Journal 11 (1): 11-44. Eldering, L. & Jo Kloprogge (1989), Different Cultures, Same School: Ethnic Minority Children in Europe. Berwyn: Swets North America. Espínola Mesa, C. (2007), The Kids on the Other Side of the Hallway: Teachers Perspectives of the Academic Achievement of Latino English Language Learners. Unpublished doctoral dissertation. University of Massachusetts, Boston. Feliciano, C. (2006a), ‘Beyond the family: The influence of premigration group status on the educational expectations of immigrants’ children’, Sociology of Education 79: 281-303. Feliciano, C. (2006b), ‘Another way to assess the second generation: Look at the parents’. Migration Information Resource. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute. Feliciano, C. (2005), ‘Educational selectivity in US immigration: How do immigrants compare to those left behind?’ Demography 42 (1): 131-152. Fernández-Kelly, P. (2008), ‘The back pocket map: Social class and cultural capital as transferable assets in the advancement of second-generation immigrants’, Annals of the American Academy 620 (1): 116-137. Fredericks, J. A. (2004), ‘School engagement: Potential of the concept, state of the evidence’, Review of Research 74 (1): 54-109. Gans, H. J. (1992), ‘Second-generation decline: Scenarios for the economic and ethnic futures of the post-1965 American immigrants’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 15: 173-192. Gándara, P. & R. Rumberger (2009), ‘Immigration, language, and education: How does language policy structure opportunity?’ Teachers College Record 111 (March): 750-782. Gibson, M. (1988), Accommodation without Assimilation: Sikh Immigrants in an American High School. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Gibson, M. A. (1997), ‘Complicating the immigrant/involuntary minority typology’, Anthropology and Education Quarterly 28 (3): 431-454. Gibson, M. & Anne Ríos Rojas (2006), ‘Globalization, immigration and the education of “new” immigrants in the twenty-first century’, Current Issues in Comparative Education 9 (1): 69-76.

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Gibson, M., P. Gándara & J. Koyoma (2004), School Connections: US-Mexican Youth, Peers, and School Achievement. New York: Teachers College Press. Gobbo, F. (2004), ‘John Ogbu: A personal recollection’, Intercultural Education 15 (4): 349-358. Hakuta, K., Y. G. Butler & D. Witt (2000), How Long Does It Take Learners to Attain English Proficiency? Stanford: University of California Language Minority Research Institute. Hernández, D. J. (2004), ‘Demographic change and the life circumstances of immigrant families’. The Future of Children, Princeton University. www.princeton. edu/futureofchildren/publications/docs/14_02_2.pdf. Holdaway, J. & R. Alba (2009), ‘Introduction: Educating immigrant youth; the role of institutions and agency’, Teachers College Record 111 (3): 597-615. Hugonnier, B. (2007), ‘Globalization and education: Can the world meet the challenge?’ in M. Suárez-Orozco (ed.), Learning in the Global Era: International Perspectives on Globalization and Education. Berkeley: University of California Press, 137-157. Huttova, J., C. McDonald & C. Harper (2008), Making the Mark? An Overview of Current Challenges in the Education for Migrant, Minority, and Marginalized Children in Europe. London: Open Society Institute. IOM (International Organization for Migration) (2012), Facts and Figures, 2012. Geneva: IOM. Kasinitz, P. M., J. Mollenkopf, M. C. Waters & J. Holdaway (2008), Inheriting the City: The Children of Immigrants Come of Age. New York & Cambridge: Russell Sage & Harvard University Press. Kraut, A. M. (2001), The Huddled Masses: The Immigrant in American Society, 18801921. Wheeling: Harlan Davidson. Lam, W. S. (2006), ‘Culture and learning in the context of globalization: Research directions’, Review of Research in Education 30 (Special Issue on Rethinking Learning: What Counts as Learning and What Learning Counts): 213-238. Leseman, P. (2007), Early Education for Immigrant Children. The TransAtlantic Task Force on Immigration and Integration. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute & Bertelsmann Stiftung. Luciak, M. (2004), ‘Minority status and schooling: John U. Ogbu’s theory and the schooling of ethnic minorities in Europe’, Intercultural Education 15 (4): 359-368. Massey, D. S. & N. A. Denton (1989), ‘Residential segregation of Mexicans, Puerto Ricans and Cubans in selected metropolitan arcade’, Sociology and Social Research 73: 73-83. Montero-Sieburth, M., L. Cabrera Pérez & Celoni Espínola Mesa (2010), ‘The effects of globalization and transnationalism on policies and practices in the education of Latinos in the US, and Latin Americans in Spain’, in E. G. Murillo & S. A. C. Villenas (eds), Handbook of Latinos and Education: Theory, Research and Practice. New York: Routledge, 135-156. Morawska, E. (2007), ‘Transnationalism’, in M. C. Waters (ed.) Harvard Encyclopedia of the New Americans. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 149-163.


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Niekerk, Mies van (2003), Premigration Legacies and Immigrant Social Mobility: The Afro-Surinamese and Indo-Surinamese in the Netherlands. New York: Lexington Books. Noguera, P. (2003), City School and the American Dream: Reclaiming the Promise of Public Education. New York: Teachers College Press. OECD (2012), ‘Education at a glance 2012: OECD indicators’. OECD Publishing. Ogbu, J. (1992), ‘Understanding cultural diversity and learning’, Educational Researcher 21 (8): 5-14. Ogbu, J. (1987), ‘Variability in minority school performance: A problem in search of an explanation’, Anthropology and Education Quarterly 18 (3): 312-334. Penninx, R. (2013), Research on Migration and Integration in Europe: Achievements and Lessons. Amsterdam: Vossiuspers, University of Amsterdam. Portes, A., P. Fernández-Kelly & W. Haller (2009), ‘The adaptation of the immigrant second generation in America: A theoretical overview and recent evidence’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 35 (7): 1077-1104. Portes, A. & P. Fernández-Kelly (2008), ‘No margin for error: Educational and occupational achievement among disadvantaged children of immigrants’, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 620: 12-36. Portes, A. & L. Hao (2004), The Schooling of Children of Immigrants: Contextual Effects on the Educational Attainment of the Second Generation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA. Portes, A. & R. Rumbaut (2001), Legacies: The Story of the Immigrant Second Generation. Berkeley: University of California Press. Portes, A. & M. Zhou (1993), ‘The new second generation: Segmented assimilation and its variants’, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 530 (1): 74-96. Rumbaut, R. G. & A. Portes (2001), Ethnicities: Children of Immigrants in America. Los Angeles & New York: University of California Press & Russell Sage Foundation. UNCSD (United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development) (2012), ‘Migration and sustainable development’, Rio 2012 Issues Brief 15 (June): 1- 7. Spring, J. (2008), ‘Research on globalization and education’, Review of Educational Research 78 (2): 330-363. Stevens, G. (1999), ‘Age at immigration and second language proficiency among foreign-born adults’, Language in Society 28: 555-578. Suárez-Orozco M., T. Darbes, S. I. Dias & M. Sutin (2011), ‘Migrations and schooling’, Annual Review of Anthropology 40: 311-328. Suárez-Orozco M. & C. Suárez-Orozco (2009), ‘Globalization, immigration and schooling’, in J. Banks (ed.), The Routledge International Companion to Multicultural Education. New York: Routledge, 62-76. Suárez-Orozco, M. & D. B. Qin (2004), Globalization: Culture and Education in the New Millennium. Los Angeles: University of California Press. Suárez-Orozco, M. (1991), ‘Migration, minority status, and education: European di-

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lemmas and responses in the 1990s’, Anthropology and Education Quarterly 22 (theme issue): 99-120. Suárez-Orozco, C., A. Pimentel & M. Martin (2009), ‘The significance of relationships: Academic engagement and achievement among newcomer immigrant youth’, Teachers College Record 111 (3): 712-749. Suárez-Orozco, C., M. Suárez-Orozco & I. Todorova (2008), Learning in a New Land: Immigrant Students in American Society. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Tartakovsky, E. (2009). Cultural Identities of Adolescent Immigrants: A Three-Year Longitudinal Study Including the Pre-Migration Period. Journal of Youth Adolescence 38, 654-671. Thompson, M. & M. Crul (2007), ‘The second generation in Europe and the United States: How is the transatlantic debate relevant for further research on the European second generation?’ Journal of Ethnic Migration Studies 33 (6): 1025-1041. Tyack, D. (1974), The One Best System: A History of American Urban Education. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. US Census (2012), US Census Bureau, Department of Commerce, Washington, DC. Vedder, P. (2006), ‘Black and white schools in the Netherlands’, European Education 38 (2): 36-49. Verkuyten, M. (2005), ‘Accounting for ethnic discrimination: A discursive study among minority and majority group members’, Journal of Language and Social Psychology 24 (1): 66-92. Verkuyten, M. (2001), ‘“Abnormalization” of ethnic minorities in conversation’, British Journal of Social Psychology 40: 257-278. Verkuyten, M. (1997), ‘Discourse of ethnic minority identity’, British Journal of Psychology 36: 565-5876. Verkuyten, M. & J. Thijs (2002), ‘Multiculturalism among minority and majority adolescents in the Netherlands’, International Journal of Intercultural Relations 26: 91-108. Wolff, R. (2008), ‘Ethnic minority students in higher education: The Dutch experience’. Paper presented at Hurst Seminar ‘Higher Education and Equality of Opportunity: Cross-National Perspectives’, 3-5 June, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel

Key reading Alba, Richard & Mary C. Waters (eds) (2011), The Next Generation: Immigrant Youth in a Comparative Perspective. New York: New York University Press. Anderson-Levitt, Kathryn M. (ed.) (2013), Anthropologies of Education: A Global Guide to Ethnographic Studies of Learning and Schooling. New York & Oxford: Berghahn. Crul, Maurice & John Mollenkopf (2012), The Changing Face of World Cities: Young Adult Children of Immigrants in Europe and the United States. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.


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Vermeulen, Hans (2011), ‘Segmented assimilation and cross-national research on the integration of immigrants and their children’, in Richard Alba & Mary C. Waters (eds) (2011), The Next Generation: Immigrant Youth in a Comparative Perspective. New York: New York University Press, 71-87.

About the author Martha Montero-Sieburth is a research fellow at the University of Amsterdam’s Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies. She is a lecturer in sociology and migration courses at the Graduate School of Social Sciences of the University of Amsterdam and at the Amsterdam University College, as well as professor emerita of the University of Massachusetts. MonteroSieburth has conducted extensive research and published more than 200 articles and several edited books in the areas of intercultural and multicultural education, educational policies and practices, research explanations regarding Latinos in the USA and second-generation Dutch-Turkish secondary school students in the Netherlands, Latin Americans in Spain, and most recently, Mexicans in the Netherlands.

8  Understanding the Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets Michael Samers

Summary This chapter explores the different perspectives used to explain the ‘incorporation’ of immigrants in European labour markets. Incorporation refers to their outcomes in terms of employment, unemployment and social mobility. Understanding such incorporation is a challenging task since the processes involved are so wide ranging. ‘Human capital theory’ (HCT) remains the dominant explanation for immigrant outcomes in European labour markets, but an alternative to HCT is offered by another set of labour market perspectives (e.g., labour market segmentation theory and network approaches). This chapter reviews some HCT studies, as well as a range of alternative arguments that attempt to show how and why the bulk of those who migrate are confined to low-wage jobs in European countries, and why even those who migrate with professional qualifications from their home country are commonly reduced to low-wage work, or to owning relatively small, poorly capitalised businesses. Keywords: labour markets, employment, unemployment, informal employment, human capital theory, labour market segmentation, social networks, ethnic/immigrant entrepreneurship

Introduction An article in the French newspaper La Libération in early 2013 reported on the working life of Fodé Mady Bah, an undocumented Senegalese man who came to France in 2006. Bah first worked in a community restaurant in a southern suburb of Paris and then found a job in 2009 as a dishwasher in a pub in the central part of the capital. In both cases he used false papers he had borrowed from a cousin. He soon joined a group of demonstrators under the auspices of a major French trade union (the CGT). As has been the case for more than a decade with other protests of undocumented immigrant workers (see, e.g., Barron et al. 2011; Nicholls



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2011), Bah and his colleagues were protesting for the right to be regularised. Three years later, he had the fortune of being among a group of protesters who managed to obtain a document from the French government authorising him to search for work under the so-called ‘Valls Circular’. He presented this paper to his employer, who needed only to approve it and Bah would have been given a temporary visa. However, the employer refused to approve the document, and even summoned him for a dismissal interview. Without employment, it appeared that Bah would either be deported to Senegal or thrown back into illegality in France. Such is the effect of immigration policy and the role of private firms in the working lives of undocumented immigrants, but even legal immigrants face similar obstacles to employment. Indeed, this is a common story of immigrants working in the lowest paid, menial jobs, especially in agriculture, catering and restaurants, construction, cleaning, caring services and domestic work, garment and textile production, food processing and in tourism-related and hospitality jobs (for case studies, see GrzymalaKazlowska 2005 for Belgium; Wahlbeck 2007 for Finland; Barron et al. 2011 and Jounin 2008 for France; Cavoundis 2006 for Greece; Kloosterman et al. 1998, Raes et al. 2002, Rath, 2001, 2003, Schapendonk 2011 and Van der Leun 2003 for the Netherlands; Mendoza 2001 for Spain; Ahmad 2008, Holgate 2004, May et al. 2007, McDowell, Batnitzky & Dyer 2007, Pai 2004, Panayiotopoulos & Dreef 2002, Ram, Jerrard & Husband 2002 and Rogaly 2008 for the UK). How then, are we to understand the fortunes of immigrants in European labour markets, whether they are legal or undocumented? How do they find employment, and in what employment, if any, are they likely to be found? What explains the concentration of particular immigrants in certain kinds of jobs? What might explain their incomes? This chapter is concerned with precisely how immigrants are incorporated or integrated into labour markets in the European context. Incorporation in European countries may be similar to processes elsewhere, but it also involves processes specific to EU countries, such as the economic structure of Southern European countries and the preponderance of informal employment, use of regularisation policies and supranational (EU-wide) policies emanating from Brussels. We explore these further below as we investigate different theories of labour market incorporation. This chapter is principally focused on those immigrants working for a wage at the bottom of the earnings scale, leaving a discussion of salaried, high-income immigrants, entrepreneurs and other professionals to other chapters (see, e.g., Chapter 9 by Kloosterman & Rath).

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Theories of the incorporation of immigrants into labour markets There are a number of theories on labour market outcomes for immigrants: (i) human capital theory and its variants; (ii) dual labour market theory; (iii) the labour market segmentation theory (especially studies from the 1970s to the 1990s); (iv) newer variants of labour market segmentation theory; (v) a ‘cultural capital’ embodiment approach; (vi) an international labour market segmentation approach; and (vii) a migrant network perspective. Again, it is important to recognise that these theories and approaches are also preoccupied with the lower end of the employment scale, whether it concerns immigrants who are legal or those who are undocumented (i.e., ‘illegal’, irregular, or clandestine). Let us take each of these theories and approaches in turn. Human capital theory and its variants Human capital theory (HCT) has its foundations in the work of economist Gary Becker (1964). Becker argues that an individual’s education, skill level and other capacities (their ‘human capital’), combined with their aspirations and choices in terms of earnings, status and job conditions, significantly shape their labour market outcomes; that is, their wages and salaries or the ‘price of their labour’. For many observers, or at least for economists of immigration and labour markets, this is not a particularly controversial proposition. We would expect our educational qualifications and other skills and abilities to have at least some bearing on the kinds of jobs and income that immigrants can secure, and there is some evidence to suggest that this is in fact the case. Yet actual outcomes complicate what seems to be a common sense assumption. In fact, over the last decade in a European context, HCT-based analyses (which primarily rest on survey data) have included ‘control variables’ to demonstrate changes in human capital over time and how immigrants’ outcomes on the labour market are shaped by age, gender, levels of parental education, generational differences (e.g., whether one is of the first or second generation), religious affiliation, ethnic and national background or ‘cultural differences’, the number of immigrants in a particular group, the presence of ‘ethnic enclaves’ or the regional concentration of ‘co-ethnics’, and ‘social capital’ (in the form of co-ethnic networks and contacts with citizens in the country of destination). These outcomes may include unemployment, labour force participation and wages (see, e.g., Bradatan & Sandu 2012; Connor & Koenig 2013; Drever & Hoffmeister 2008; Fleischmann & Dronkers 2010; Kanas et al. 2012; Kanas & Van Tubergen 2011; Kogan 2003, 2004; Kogan & Kalter 2006; Koopmans 2010; Lessard-Phillips, Fibbi & Wanner 2013; Martinovic, Van Tubergen & Maas 2009; Reyneri & Fullin 2011). When actual outcomes diverge from outcomes expected based on human capital

Qualifications, skills and abilities


Cross-national comparisons

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differences and controlling for other ‘factors’, scholars refer to this as an ‘immigrant wage’ or ‘ethnic penalty’ (Reyneri & Fullin 2011). Other analyses in the same tradition have attempted to explore the relationship between labour market outcomes and different ‘varieties of national capitalisms’, different ‘welfare regimes’ or simply different national policies, especially policies related to immigration, employment and welfare (see, e.g., Büchel & Frick 2005; Demireva 2011; Devitt 2011; Fleischmann and Dronkers 2010; Kogan 2007). With regard to immigration policies, Büchel and Frick (2005) found in a cross-national comparison of Western European countries during the 1980s and 1990s that labour market outcomes vary substantially with immigration policy, while controlling for ‘human capital’. With respect to welfare policies, Kogan (2007) argues that in so-called ‘liberal welfare societies’, such as Ireland and the UK, immigrants are more likely to be employed than in ‘corporatist welfare’ societies, such as Austria and Germany, or in ‘clientalistic’/‘residual’ welfare societies, such as Italy or Spain. In contrast, Fleischmann and Dronkers (2010) find no correlation between the type of welfare regime and the likelihood of unemployment. What some of the newer cross-national, comparative evidence shows is that either a robust macroeconomic environment (e.g., relatively low unemployment) (ibid.) or more restrictive or ‘assimilationist’ policies rather than multicultural or welfare policies as in the Netherlands and Sweden (Koopmans 2010) seems to lead to greater ‘labour market integration’ of immigrants. Yet, extreme caution must be exercised in interpreting such results, for at least two reasons. First, most analyses based on human capital employ national or cross-national survey data that is in fact difficult to compare, and therefore they involve considerable ‘smoothing’ of the quantitative data. Second, many of the comparisons rest on quite static conceptions of national ‘varieties of capitalism’ and welfare states that owe especially to the work of Esping-Andersen (1990). The actual nature of intertwined European economies may differ substantially from such ‘ideal-types’. While similar in methodology, others (e.g., Mumford & Smith 2004) have attempted to bridge HCT with the more critical labour market segmentation approach (LMSA). The LMSA is discussed in a subsequent section, but the basic idea of these hybrid studies is to evaluate the relationship between what labour market outcomes might be predicted by immigrants’ human capital and their actual outcomes as a result of ethno-national, racial, gender and other discrimination. Such discrimination is argued to explain what observers of immigration call ‘socio-professional downgrading’ (Reyneri 2001) or the ‘devaluation of immigrant labour’ (Bauder 2005) whereby many highly-qualified immigrants, asylum-seekers and refugees – including doctors and computer engineers – are reduced to performing low-paid jobs because their credentials are not formally recognised by the government or employers in the country of immigration (see, e.g., Kogan

Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets


2011 on Germany; Reyneri & Fullin 2011 and Rydgren 2004 for Sweden; and Stewart 2008 and Demireva 2011 for the UK). Some economic and urban geographers (Mattingly 1999; Wright & Ellis 2000; Ellis, Wright & Parks 2007) also adopt a broad human capital approach, but explore its subnational implications by studying the relationship between human and social capital, housing and residential location and ‘employment niching’ (why immigrants concentrate in particular industries). The purpose is to determine how these other variables shape immigrants’ labour market outcomes within and across cities and metropolitan areas. Ellis, Wright and Park (2007) argue that – with some exceptions – the residential location of immigrants shapes their concentration in certain kinds of jobs. According to them, the spatial accessibility of jobs matters as much as the social access to jobs. This subnationally oriented research stands as an important corrective to using only national data when studying labour market outcomes, since labour markets vary substantially by region within European countries. Although a human capital approach is employed in a diversity of studies, its basic propositions are hardly without criticisms. For one, the most simple HCT-based analyses rely on dubious assumptions, such as ‘holding language skills constant’ and ‘unchanging citizenship statuses’. Our opening story concerning France illustrated that such statuses can change, and this has similarly been documented in the cases of Greece and Italy, to name just two other examples (Reyneri 2001; Schuster 2005; Triandafyllidou & Ambrosini 2011). Second and relatedly, HCT-based studies are poor at illuminating the effects of changing immigration policies on labour market outcomes. Third, there is the difficulty that studies in the HCT vein tend to prioritise nationality (often as a proxy for ethnicity) as a variable to be analysed, as if it is unquestionable that ‘nationality’ or ‘ethnicity’ (rather than say gender) has some social importance in terms of outcomes (Hanson & Pratt 1991). Fourth, as the literature on labour market segmentation shows, HCT is poor at directly (rather than indirectly) evaluating or measuring discrimination and the relegation of highly-skilled immigrants into lowwage jobs, as discussed above. A fifth problem, as research by geographers among others has shown, is what social scientists now call ‘methodological nationalism’ (Wimmer & Glick Schiller 2002), that is, using only national rather than sub-national data. After all, employment can vary enormously from region to region within individual European countries. A dual labour market approach In Piore’s (1979) widely read Birds of Passage, he distinguishes between two labour market ‘sectors’: a primary sector, which contains relatively highpaying, stable jobs with pleasant working conditions and considerable possibility for promotion, and a ‘secondary sector’, which contains relatively

Subnational comparisons



Dichotomous labour sectors

Michael Samers

low-wage jobs that are unstable, involve poorer working conditions and suffer from ‘promotion blockages’. Immigrants are argued to be concentrated in secondary jobs based on the recruiting strategy of employers who view immigrants as more accepting of low-wage jobs. The focus is on the demand characteristics of labour markets, that is, the industrial structure of the advanced economies and their supposed dualistic labour markets. While elegant, convincing and acknowledged throughout the literature, Piore’s analysis may be insufficiently nuanced for twenty-first century labour markets (but see, e.g., Reyneri & Fullin (2011) and Bradatan & Sandu (2012) for the continued mobilisation of such a concept in the context of Spain). First, jobs in European countries do not fall neatly into such a dichotomy, even if it appears that extremely low-wage jobs (such as in agriculture, cleaning, construction and domestic work) performed by legal or undocumented immigrants are starkly different from many ‘middle-class’ or ‘high-income’ jobs . Second, Piore’s emphasis on labour demand by employers neglects a better understanding of why immigrants accept such jobs; in other words, it is weaker on the ‘supply-side’ perspective. When labour market economists and economic sociologists speak of the ‘supply side’, they refer to the availability, characteristics and practices of workers. Nevertheless, a key insight of Piore’s that may now seem ‘obvious’ to many observers is that immigrants are willing to accept jobs that ‘natives’ are unwilling to accept. This in turn gives rise to a debate about whether immigrants ‘substitute’ for ‘native workers’, that is, whether they take the jobs of citizens, or whether they are a ‘complement’, that is, they perform jobs that ‘no-one else wants to do’, and therefore provide a valuable service to the citizens of the USA and Western Europe. Piore argues that they act as a complement. At any rate, Piore is equally neglectful of the significance of immigration policy. Third, many of the industrial jobs occupied by immigrants between the 1950s and the 1970s were actually quite stable, if certainly low-paid (Samers 1999). Fourth, Piore neglected to explore informal employment, highly paid immigrants, or for that matter entrepreneurship, and fifth, he used a rather simple and static notion of citizenship (one is either a citizen or not). In fact, the dual labour market hypothesis can be considered a simple explanation of segmentation. Fortunately, a more nuanced version of labour market segmentation began brewing around the same time. The labour market segmentation approach The labour market segmentation (LMS) approach owes much of its beginnings to the work of Reich, Gordon and Edwards (1973). They argued that employers create different ‘segments’, ‘sub-markets’ or ‘divisions’ within labour markets. These segments have their own rules of operation in terms of pay, working conditions, promotion, institutions and so forth. In short, there are not just two job sectors but a variety of segments. Analysts in

Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets


this vein are often labour market economists and economic or urban sociologists who use both quantitative and qualitative evidence to emphasise employers’ segmentation of workers into specific types, or categories of jobs. The LMS approach therefore stands as a direct critique of HCT, and remains as concerned with the processes of discriminatory behaviour that lead to labour market outcomes, as it is with the outcomes themselves. Nonetheless, as suggested earlier, some studies combine HCT and labour market segmentation, and the latter is distinguished from the former by the degree to which there is direct (often qualitative) evidence of discrimination in the workplace. This segmentation occurs regardless of, or at least with little appreciation of, immigrants’ actual ‘human capital’. Rather, employers base their hiring and promotion decisions on other characteristics, such as nationality, gender/sex or the colour of a candidate’s skin. In short, what becomes important is ‘statistical discrimination’ at the point of hiring or in the workplace. ‘Statistical discrimination’ refers to prejudicial stereotypes about the characteristics of groups such as immigrants of a certain nationality (‘they’re lazy’, or alternatively ‘they work hard’). As Paulsson (1994: 150) writes on foremen’s attitudes to immigrants and Swedish citizens in a Volvo factory in the early 1990s, ‘[I]f Johansson is late for work, he is a problem. If Stojanovski is similarly late, the Yugoslavs are a problem’ (cited in Rydgren 2004: 709). In other words, the Swedish employers he interviewed can accept that Swedish citizens might be heterogeneous (diverse), but if one immigrant of a particular nationality makes a mistake at work, all immigrants of that nationality are considered to be equally mistakeprone. Employers therefore use stereotypes to gauge the suitability of migrants for particular jobs, rather than basing their decisions on a migrant’s skills and other human capital attributes. As mentioned above, sometimes employer stereotypes involve ‘positive’ attitudes towards particular nationalities, such as ‘they are hard workers’. Indeed, research in the UK in the mid-2000s showed that many employers favoured Polish immigrant workers over those from outside the EU (Anderson et al. 2006; McDowell, Batnitzky & Dyer 2007), and the same seems to be true for the ‘good’ Albanians, Bulgarians, Romanians and Ukrainians, preferred by employers in Greece (Triandafyllidou & Ambrosini 2011). Early LMS studies also attempted to connect broad changes in economies, including economic institutions with changes in labour market segmentation (Gordon, Edwards & Reich 1982). This research remains significant because, like the dual labour market approach, the LMS approach adopts a demand-side perspective, by assuming that the demand by, and actions of employers are the most significant dimension of segmentation. In this regard, three broad changes in labour market demand should be mentioned. First, connections should be drawn between substantial EUwide changes in labour market demand since the 1970s that have come to

Segmented labour market

Employers’ actions


Informal employment

Michael Samers

be associated with ‘post-Fordism’, ‘neoliberalisation’, and so forth (the massive loss of manufacturing jobs, especially in certain regions of Northern and Western Europe, the decline of trade unions, the rise of service work and greater sub-contracting, including sub-contracted informal employment). These common changes aside, there are marked differences in the structure of economies and therefore labour demand within and between national economies. One of these structural differences involves the ‘informal sector’ or the ‘informal sphere’. The arguable increase in the ‘informal sphere’ (e.g., Kloosterman, Van der Leun & Rath 1998, 1999; Sciortino & Bommes 2011; Williams & Windebank 1998) in most European countries since the 1970s, perhaps with the exception of France, marks a second change in labour market demand (for cross-national quantitative evidence, see Schneider et al. 2010). The informal sphere is probably more appropriately understood as a process of ‘informalisation’ (Sassen 1998) since most economic activity has moments of formality and informality, whether this involves informal waged labour, non-waged household and community work, or entrepreneurship (e.g., Kloosterman, Van der Leun & Rath 1998, 1999; Smith & Stenning 2006; Williams & Windebank 1998). Let us nevertheless operate with a definition of the ‘informal sphere’ which Williams & Windebank (1998: 4) describe as ‘all productive activity’ or ‘work activities’ which are ‘unregistered by or hidden from the state and/or tax, social security and/or labour law purposes, but which are legal in all other respects’. They then distinguish between informal employment (that is, waged work) and informal work (mutual aid, for example, painting someone’s flat in exchange for taking care of someone’s kids). While the informal sphere may encompass both, along with informal entrepreneurship, our concern here is with informal employment. Informal work and entrepreneurship involve other processes that cannot be adequately addressed in this chapter; see again Kloosterman, Van der Leun & Rath (1998, 1999), especially their notion of ‘mixed embeddeness’, as well as Rath (2001) and Williams & Windebank (1998). Concerning informal employment then, there are substantial national differences in informal labour market demand in terms of their relative weight in national economies. Informal employment constitutes a larger proportion of the Southern European economies of Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain than it does in Northern European countries such as Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Sweden or the UK. For a review of European case studies, see Samers (2005) and Reyneri and Fullin (2011). For quantitative evidence, see Schneider, Buehn & Montenegro (2010). While most informal employment and work is performed by citizens, rather than by immigrants, undocumented immigrants in particular are often employed informally, since most legal work requires appropriate work visas. While undocumented immigrants can obtain work permits illegally, and this is practiced widely in European countries, most

Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets


undocumented immigrants struggle to obtain the correct papers, whether through legal or illegal channels. The point should be clear though that greater sub-contracting (and sub-contracting within sub-contracting) creates price competition and puts pressure on low-end suppliers of goods and services to hire immigrants for low-wage work. Again, this seems to be one of the principle features of ‘post-Fordist’ or ‘neoliberalised’ European economies (Samers 2005). A third demand trend which remains significant is the Europe-wide economic and financial crisis since 2008 and the persistent recession in some countries (Greece and Spain in particular). This has had a profound effect in terms of greater unemployment and declining incomes for the least skilled (or least paid) migrants in most European countries (Bailey 2013; Triandafyllidou and Ambrosini 2011). In fact, the gap in unemployment between citizens and immigrants increased from 2007 to 2009 in the EU. However, this effect is uneven between member states, and unemployment in Germany has actually increased much less for the least skilled migrants than it has for the more highly qualified (Papademetriou et al. 2010). Generally speaking though, in the EU, the economic and financial crisis has led to greater unemployment for low-income immigrants, reduced incomes, greater restrictions on entry, reduced migration, declining remittances and calls for increased deportations (Bailey 2013; Papademetriou et al. 2010). In their emphasis on the structure of labour market demand, many LMS studies tend to neglect what social scientists call ‘social reproduction’ (in other words, how workers’ lives are made possible or ‘reproduced’ through sufficient housing, welfare payments, childcare, the gendered division of labour, mutual aid, and so on). Regulatory issues are often accorded insufficient attention too (labour market policies, immigration policies, welfare policies, and so forth). In terms of the latter, immigrant and employment policies in Italy since the 2002 Bossi-Fini law have created a situation whereby immigrants must prove that they have been employed for at least two years, but this contradicts the often temporary character of work offered by labour markets in Italy. The result is that immigrants scramble to find an employer who will hire them at the end of the two years. If they cannot be hired, they lose their residence permit and are thrown into illegality (Triandafyllidou & Ambrosini 2011). In light of studies that neglect such policies along with social reproduction, Peck (1996) calls for an integrative approach to labour market segmentation that encompasses not only labour market demand (what he calls ‘production imperatives’), but also supply (what he calls ‘processes of social reproduction’), and the role of state institutions (‘forces of regulation’). He refers to this as ‘fourth generation labour market segmentation theory’. We might add to this comprehensive perspective, the role of labour market intermediaries such as recruitment agencies and the role of institutions and individuals involved



Michael Samers

in trafficking for the purposes of (sex/sexual) work (Askola 2007; Kyle & Kowslowski 2001; Salt & Stein 1997; Van Liempt & Doomernik 2006). Today’s employers’ apparent need for ‘flexibility’, especially the ability to move people into different job positions at will in the service sector, may no longer necessitate the same rigid segments as the more ‘Fordist’ industrial workplace. Nonetheless, evidence of employment discrimination in terms of immigrants’ labour market outcomes continues to be present, whether in France (see, e.g., Jounin 2008), Italy (e.g., Reyneri 2004), the UK (e.g., May et al. 2007; McDowell, Batnitzky & Dyer 2007), Spain (e.g., Lasierra 2007; Polavieja 2005; Solé & Parella 2003) or Sweden (Rydgren 2004). Indeed, Jounin (2008) shows that temporary firms in the Paris construction industry group same nationality immigrants (such as Algerians, Moroccans and Portuguese) in particular types of jobs in the sector, based on employer perceptions of suitability, and regardless of the particular skills of immigrants. Algerians and Moroccans are thrown into some of the most arduous jobs in the industry. Yet segmentation may be based on more than national or ethnic stereotypes, and we now turn to one other notable variant of LMS. Newer variants of LMS theory I: A cultural capital/embodiment approach

Set of traits

In a novel analysis, Bauder (2005) incorporates Bourdieu’s notion of ‘cultural capital’ to explore how the ‘cultural judgements’ of employers (based on accent, affect, dress, etc.) and the ‘corporeal’ (that is, embodied or bodily) behaviour of immigrants, whether at the point of hiring or at work, combine to produce certain kinds of outcomes for immigrants. In this way, segmentation entails more than just ethnic or racial stereotyping. Employers are searching for a specific set of traits for a particular job or set of tasks. If immigrants do not ‘look and dress the part’ (including speaking with the ‘right’ accent, ‘knowing the rules’, etc.) according to the employer’s expectations, then obtaining a job, let alone a promotion, might be difficult. In this way, one’s human capital or achievements are discounted. Yet ‘cultural capital’ is geographically specific, so one’s cultural capital might work in one setting but not in another. Bauder shows then that in Vancouver, Canada, where turban-wearing Sikh men are concentrated in the taxi business, the turban becomes associated with reliability and integrity, rather with cultural ‘otherness’. Would-be clients are therefore reassured by a turban-wearing driver. More humorously, he writes: To use a hypothetical example, if ethnic networks channeled large numbers of traditional, lederhosen-wearing southern German men in to the pizza-delivery business, then wearing lederhosen might become a legitimate practice in this occupation. If this group dominates the occupation, lederhosen may even become a trademark of the occupation which

Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets


customers learn to expect from the delivery personnel. What this silly example illustrates is that the concentration of an immigrant group in a given occupation affects the corporeal conventions that dominate in that occupation (Bauder 2005: 132).

Thus, in many instances, a diverse or nationality/ethnic-specific workforce can be an advantage for employers, especially in a ‘super-diverse’ Europe (Vertovec 2007), where the customers for any particular business, product or service, may not necessarily be citizens, as Waldinger and Lichter (2003) demonstrate in the context of the USA. For example, in a hospital or a business where the clientele is Arabic-speaking, hiring workers who also speak Arabic may be beneficial for the employers, though this may not be as widespread in the EU as in the USA. At any rate, this need not be strictly a local phenomenon, but can stretch across space depending on how customers and sellers or service providers come together, for example, on the Internet. This cultural capital approach and its sensitivity to issues of diversity remains a useful addition to the literature on how immigrants find and maintain employment. However, strictly speaking, such an approach ignores matters of immigration policy and citizenship status, at least directly, and it is to these issues which we now turn. Newer variants of labour market segmentation theory II: An international labour market segmentation approach Peck’s (1996) integrative approach to labour market segmentation (briefly discussed above) stresses the effects of local differences in terms of ‘production imperatives’, ‘processes of social reproduction’ and ‘forces of regulation’. His emphasis on local differences reflects his concerns about ‘methodological nationalism’. In doing so, however, his useful framework tends to neglect the international dimensions of segmentation. An ‘international labour market segmentation’ (ILMS) approach (Samers 2008, 2010a, 2010b) is designed to address this weakness. To begin with, the ILMS approach employs Peck’s framework, and it assumes that many of the processes associated with the other approaches are present in actual practices (stereotyping, ‘cultural judgements’, etc.). It then breaks down segmentation into three dimensions. First, supra-national (in this case EU-level institutions), national (EU member state governments), and sub-national (e.g., regional governments with decision-making powers in terms of immigrant settlement or work visas) segment workers on international grounds through various immigration and asylum policies. In other words, these different levels of government decide either who can be admitted legally or who is allowed to settle legally within EU countries, and under what conditions (the nature and length of residence or work

Local differences

182 Supranational

Within states

Michael Samers

permits). At the supranational or EU level, examples include the Europewide ‘Blue Card’ for highly-skilled workers, and the Dublin II Convention on asylum. The Dublin Convention involves the restriction of so-called ‘asylum-shopping’. In other words, it entails sending asylum-seekers back to the first ‘safe’ country they enter, which may be neither safe, nor beneficial to their livelihoods, since, like other restrictive policies at the national level, it often leaves immigrants with inadequate social protection, limited resources and few options other than to accept informal employment. This is especially the case in Southern European countries to where asylumseekers are often returned from Northern European countries (Triandafyllidou & Ambrosini 2011). Second, national, and sub-national institutions segment workers within states through labour market, welfare and immigration policies, and by imposing restrictions on where immigrants can live, which may also be tied to restrictions on in which sectors they can work. Caviedes (2010) refers to this as the ‘sectoral turn in migration policy’. Evidence of such restrictions is visible in, for example, Germany (Edin, Frediriksson & Åslund 2004), Spain (Mendoza 2001) and the UK (Phillimore & Goodson 2006). At the sub-national level, some regions have considerable latitude in determining the fate of immigrants’ working lives by agreeing to certain work and residence permits. The municipal employment offices of German regional states (Länder) are a case in point. In the early 2000s, the procedures for hiring an unskilled worker from outside the EU in Germany consisted of a ‘double regulation system’. A firm first had to search for a candidate via a central (national) placement agency, and if a provisional job was offered to an immigrant, the firm had to verify that no EU worker was available from the local, municipal employment office. If and when a certificate from the employment office was issued to the firm, the individual migrant could obtain a visa to Germany, and then an employment contract could be procured. The employment contract allowed an immigrant to obtain a residence permit. Here we see that even municipal employment offices play a role in regulating migration and settlement (OECD 2000). Third, the ILMS approach involves the dimension traditionally associated with a LMS approach; that is, the segmentation of workers within firms and households. Households can be considered private ‘micro-firms’ in which domestic workers are employed. While this does not strictly involve complicated labour segments, women are dominant in such employment based on gender expectations associated with domestic work. Across the EU, thousands of immigrant women, from Filipino women in Rome, to Romanian and Ecuadorian women in Madrid, work in middle-class and upper-class apartments and homes. Many are undocumented, have little or no rights under national immigration and employment laws, work extremely long hours for very low pay, and are subject to the whims of their employers (see, e.g., Peuch 2004). As Anderson (2001) notes, domestic

Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets


workers need to embrace an ‘any job/always on’ attitude, ready to handle kids, cleaning and other domestic tasks. Beyond firms and households, the ILMS approach accords attention to organisations. It recognises that segmentation in governmental or quasi-governmental organisations, as well as households, should be examined equally since the hospitals and clinics associated with the healthcare systems of European countries employ a significant number of immigrants (De Veer, Den Ouden & Francke 2004; Kryiakides & Virdee 2003; Raghuram & Kofman 2002; Stewart 2008). In any case, ILMS at the level of the firm or organisation may also reflect the intersection of employer decisions, on one hand, with ‘denizenship’ (Hammar 1990), that is, the gradations of immigrant citizenship, on the other. Denizenship refers to the different degrees of citizenship consistent with different types of residence and work permits. Taking the idea of denizenship further, Ruhs and Anderson (2010) speak of ‘semi-compliance’, which refers to the ability of migrants to work for only a limited number of hours per week, in only specific kinds of jobs, or under other stipulations. Employers will take advantage of this semi-compliance and this is precisely where labour market demand, immigration policies and the individual legal characteristics intersect in the labour market. One would expect then that undocumented immigrants working in low-wage employment such as in the garment industry in central Paris would be the most desirable for employers. Yet Iskander (2000) shows that this is not the case, since some of the phases of garment production are legal and some illegal. Therefore, garment employers prefer legal immigrants who can work in phases that are legal as well as illegal. Some tendencies against labour market segmentation might be in operation in the twenty-first century, such as the need for flexibility, recruitment into specific jobs through immigrant networks (rather than through processes of segmentation) and anti-discrimination legislation. Yet the evidence for ILMS continues to be visible. All of these approaches however, appear to neglect the agency (that is, the actions) of immigrants themselves, and it is for this reason that we turn to the last of the approaches under discussion.

Firms, organisations and households

A migrant network approach in a ‘super-diverse’ EU In the migrant (or social) network approach, the emphasis is not on employers but on the practices of immigrants themselves, and particularly the social networks of ‘co-nationals’ or ‘co-ethnics’ involved in finding jobs and providing for other resources, such as housing and legal assistance. In other words, such social networks can contribute to various forms of ‘social capital’ and an ‘economy of favours’ (Ledeneva 1998). Co-national or co-ethnic networks are often referred to as ‘bonding’ social networks. These can be distinguished from so-called ‘bridging capital’, that is, estab-

Immigrants’ practices


Contacts and networks

Ethnic niches

Michael Samers

lishing contacts outside the immigrants’ national or ethnic group, and especially in the context of immigration, with citizens (Putnam 2000; Lancee 2010). In both cases, these networks (or ‘ties’) may be strong, and some may be weaker. In fact, Granovetter (1973) argued that ‘weak ties’ may be more effective for obtaining necessary resources (e.g., jobs, housing, etc.) than ‘strong ties’, and it is crucial to recognise that not all co-ethnic or conational networks are ‘strong’, as they are often divided by ‘class’, gender and other social differences. The evidence in a European context is mixed on the significance of strong co-national or co-ethnic ties for finding jobs and especially securing higher incomes (Reyneri & Fullin 2011). In Germany, for example, Kanas et al. (2012) find social contacts have a demonstrable effect on the occupational status and especially the yearly income of immigrants. They also argue that ties with German citizens lead to higher occupational status (‘bridging capital’) but not to increased income. Lancee (2010) finds similar results in the Netherlands for immigrants coming from outside the EU during the early 2000s, although incomes increased. Other work and financial-related resources obtained from co-nationals and co-ethnics might be equally important for an immigrant’s working life. For instance, Vasta and Kandilige (2010) find that undocumented Ghanaians in London, who are unable to open a bank account, may ‘rent’ one from a legal compatriot. In some cases, a payment for this ‘renting’ is expected, while in others, it is based on mutual aid. On the other hand, strong co-national or co-ethnic ties can be detrimental to labour market outcomes. For example, Grzymala-Kazlowska (2005) shows in her study of undocumented Polish migrant workers in Brussels that many Polish workers are suspicious of each other and that cooperation has led to competition and the undermining of mutual assistance. Rather than a dense network of Polish workers then, she prefers to speak of a ‘quasi-community’. Nonetheless, if immigrants come to dominate a worksite or even a specific industry linguistically, such as Turkish men in the garment industry in Amsterdam (Raes et al. 2002; Rath 2001), they may be able to exclude other immigrant groups from obtaining those same jobs (Rath 2001; Waldinger 1996; Waldinger & Lichter 2003). This can lead in turn to employment (or ethnic) niches and or ‘ethnic economies’. The first describes ‘economic sectors... where group members are disproportionately represented in the labour force, either in public sector jobs or in private businesses that are typically owned by and managed by whites or members of another ethnic group’ (Logan, Alba & Stults 2003: 346). Rath (2001) argues that there are important differences between the formation of ‘ethnic niches’ in cities such as Los Angeles, as understood by Waldinger (1996), and those in Amsterdam. For example, he notes the significance of the Dutch welfare state in impeding ethnic niche formation, while other regulations, for example, concerning halal meat, have led to the endurance of Moroccan

Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets


and Turkish immigrants as Islamic butchers. Yet Rath (2001) also demonstrates similar cross-national or cross-urban processes in terms of how different ethnic groups come to dominate particular jobs within certain entrepreneurial activities. ‘Ethnic economies’ (Bonacich & Modell 1980) entail the self-employed and their co-ethnic employees. Such economies may be spread out across cities, regions and countries, but the relationships between participants (owners, workers and customers) are argued to be ‘ethnic’ in character, whether these are defined by academics or the immigrants themselves (Light et al. 1994). Whatever dominance immigrants may achieve in particular workplaces or sectors, they may only be able to shape their labour market outcomes to a limited degree, since labour market demands, immigration and other policies, their human capital and segmentation processes also bear on their fortunes. In fact, in our discussion immediately above, we focused on how networks assist immigrants in finding work, but little has been written on how employers, especially those of low-wage, and informal or undocumented workers, utilise social networks to their advantage. First, finding reliable workers may be difficult, and immigrant job networks defray the time and cost of undertaking such searches. Second, existing workers may encourage (to not say impel) the friends or relatives they have recruited to the firm to be more loyal and willing to endure sub-standard wages and employment conditions. Both of these are likely to benefit employers of immigrants, as much as immigrants themselves.

Conclusions Finding paid work is a priority for immigrants. Beyond relying on the generosity of friends or relatives, or for some immigrants, subsisting on welfare benefits, employment obtainment is one of the chief ways in which lowincome immigrants survive in European countries. This chapter focused on how immigrants are incorporated into European labour markets. It emphasised particularly those immigrants who are disadvantaged, mainly originating from outside the EU, from the post-2004 accession countries, and from the Southern European countries that have faced growing unemployment over the past few years. It is important to recognise that many immigrants from around the world, including some from poorer countries, are highly skilled, highly qualified and are found working in a wide range of sectors in Europe, including in banking and finance, engineering, and medicine and nursing. However, many highly skilled migrants quickly become low-income immigrants, asylum-seekers and refugees, and they are mainly found in a very different set of sectors, as discussed at the beginning of this chapter. How do we explain this concentration, their low wages and their lack of socio-economic mobility?

Ethnic economies



Michael Samers

We explored a number of different approaches, provided some examples of research findings across and within different EU countries, and reviewed some strengths and weaknesses of these. Beginning with the human capital perspective, we saw that human capital matters for those who are explicitly recruited into highly paid administrative or executive employment, but as noted above, for many immigrants who come to Europe as family members, through temporary employment schemes, through asylum or as undocumented immigrants, their skills and qualifications seem to matter relatively little. Indeed, this has been described as ‘socioprofessional downgrading’ or ‘the devaluation of immigrant labour’. Beyond human capital theory, we explored different versions of labour market segmentation. Culminating in the idea of international labour market segmentation, this chapter suggests that what Peck (1996) calls production imperatives, processes of social reproduction and forces of regulation intersect to produce segmentation. However, we can expand on Peck’s three-dimensional approach to investigate the effects of supra-national, national, and regional/local policies to understand how immigrants are segmented into particular jobs, sectors and even regions. These ‘forces of regulation’ (in the form of immigration policies that include citizenship, naturalisation, work and residence permits, welfare and housing policies) intersect with processes of social reproduction (housing, the use of welfare payments, child care, mutual aid, and so forth) and the varied contours of labour demand to create vulnerabilities for immigrants that may act in many instances to secure their compliance, docility and ultimately their willingness to endure long hours, poor working conditions and low pay. Finally, we examined the significance of migrant networks for finding employment and for work-related resources such as housing, health and financial assistance. Yet inadvertently, these migrant networks also assist employers in finding loyal and docile workers through an ‘economy of favours’ created by co-ethnic and co-national networks. Some research shows that different forms of co-ethnic or co-national networks have positive effects on employment and income, while other studies show it has very little influence. Rather, what seems more convincing is that ‘bridging capital’ (that is, contacts with citizens) is likely to have positive outcomes for employment and incomes. Given the diversity of immigrant origins and destinations, the characteristics of immigrants, the variety across labour markets in different countries and regions, and the range of national and sub-national institutions and policies, clearly, drawing neat and quick conclusions about how immigrants find work and their socio-economic mobility will be a tricky business. Nevertheless, together, these different approaches allow us to better understand how migrants find employment and their fortunes. As European societies and the nature of immigration change in the future, perhaps there will be a need to either modify or develop entirely new approaches to these questions.

Incorporation of Immigrants in European Labour Markets


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Key reading Bailey, A. (2013), ‘Migration, recession, and an emerging transnational biopolitics across Europe’, Geoforum 44: 202-210. Castles, S. & M. Miller (2009), Age of Migration (Fourth edition). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Lancee, B. (2012), Immigrant Performance in the Labour Market: Bonding and Bridging Social Capital. IMISCOE Research. Amsterdam: University of Amsterdam Press. Menz, G. & A. Caviedes (eds), Labour Migration in Europe. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Rath, J. (ed.) (2002), Unravelling the Rag Trade: Immigrant Entrepreneurship in Seven World Cities. Oxford/New York: Berg Press. Samers, M. (2010), Migration. London & New York: Routledge. Sciortino, G. & M. Bommes (eds) (2011), Foggy Social Structures: Irregular Migration, European Labour Markets, and the Welfare State. IMISCOE Research. Amsterdam: University of Amsterdam Press. Vasta, E. & L. Kandilige (2010), ‘“London the leveller”: Ghanaian work strategies and community solidarity’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36 (4): 581598.

About the author Michael Samers is an associate professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Kentucky. He is author of Migration (2010) and numerous articles and book chapters on the relationship between undocumented immigration and informal employment, labour markets and migration and the political economy of immigration in the EU (especially France) and the USA. He served as co-editor of Geoforum from 2006 to 2013 and was a Fulbright scholar in France from 2013 to 2014 based at the Université de Lille II.

9  Immigrant Entrepreneurship Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath1

Summary Immigrant entrepreneurship is on the rise. Immigrant businesses have traditionally comprised mainly small stores confined to the lower segment of markets, but high-value activities are on the rise. This transformation has resulted in part from the increasing level of educational attainment of many immigrants and members of ethnic minorities. But it has also been driven by recent structural shifts from industrial to post-industrial economies. This chapter first sketches the development of immigrant entrepreneurship in Europe. It then provides an overview of the various ways in which scholars have described and explained this phenomenon. Finally, it presents a framework for analysing immigrant entrepreneurship and its potential contribution to migrants’ social incorporation based on the mixed embeddedness approach. This approach stresses the interplay between opportunities for businesses and immigrant entrepreneurs and their resources, while exploring how regulation may affect markets and therefore opportunities. Keywords: immigrant entrepreneurship, ethnic entrepreneurship, mixed embeddedness, urban economies, regulation

Immigrant entrepreneurship on the rise Throughout history, immigrants have set up businesses in the places where they settled. Members of certain diaspora communities, such as the Chinese, Armenian, Lebanese, Jewish and Greek, have been prominent as entrepreneurs in many countries. Entrepreneurship, then, has been an important avenue of insertion and incorporation into the host society and its


This chapter is a revised and partly re-written version of Kloosterman (2010a) and Kloosterman and Rath (2010), and Rath (2002).

196 Self-employment

Upward social mobility

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economy. In the closing decades of the twentieth century, self-employment became even more important for immigrants and ethnic minorities, as flows of immigration increased while opportunities for small businesses also expanded. There has been a more qualitative shift as well. Due to rising levels of educational attainment, immigrants from less-developed countries are now seen starting businesses in more highly skilled segments, such as software services and business consultancy. The archetypical immigrant entrepreneur running a mom-and-pop store obviously still exists, but nowadays a different type of immigrant entrepreneur is also becoming part of the economic landscape in many advanced urban economies. Much better educated, on average, than their predecessors, these immigrant entrepreneurs are not necessarily confined to the lower segments of markets. Many have access to attractive, expanding markets, and they are typically more pulled to self-employment than pushed into it. Some evolve into true companies, often multinational in nature, such as Patak, the well-known UK producer of Indian food, and Olcay Gulsen, the Turkish-Dutch founder and owner of SuperTrash, a high-end label ‘for independent women with a great sense of style’. Gulsen’s business has a retail network of more than 2,000 luxury boutiques and department stores and 12 brand stores in 24 countries. Immigrants from less-developed economies may thus see self-employment increasingly as an attractive option in itself, not merely as a second-best solution after regular employment. The potential of selfemployment to open avenues of upward social mobility for immigrants further increases its appeal. The qualitative shift from low-value-added to high-value-added businesses occurring among segments of the immigrant population, moreover, emphasises the potential significance of immigrant entrepreneurs for the national and, in particular, the local economies in the countries of settlement. A case in point is the crucial role played by entrepreneurs from China and India based in Silicon Valley in organising global commodity chains in software products (Saxenian 1999, 2002, 2006). This example aptly illustrates immigrant entrepreneurs’ capability to boost the competitive strength of advanced urban economies. A diverse and entrepreneurial population, more generally, has come to be seen as a precondition for economic growth (Florida 2002). Immigrants add, in principle, to the entrepreneurial population in numerical terms, but they also contribute new ideas, products, practices, markets and contacts (Aytar & Rath 2012; Brandellero 2008; Rath 2007). Across the OECD member states, immigrant entrepreneurship scores high on policymakers’ agendas due to its strategic importance for economic (and, arguably, socio-cultural) incorporation in the countries of settlement and its potentially significant contribution to local and national economies (cf., Rath & Swagerman 2011). Academic researchers have been looking at immigrant entrepreneurship for quite some time now (especial-

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ly since 1990), producing a considerable body of literature on immigrant entrepreneurship. This literature comprises mainly studies focusing on particular aspects of immigrant entrepreneurship, such as specific groups, places, sectors and resources. Much scarcer are general overviews dealing with conceptual and the empirical aspects of immigrant entrepreneurship in multiple countries (Waldinger Aldrich & Waldinger 1990; Light & Gold 2000; Kloosterman & Rath 2001, 2003; Kloosterman, Rath & Razin 2002; Van Tubergen 2005; Panayiotopoulos 2006). This has to do with researchers’ tendency to focus more on the unique aspects of immigrant entrepreneurship, especially those which are obviously ‘ethnic’. Definitional difficulties also hamper international comparisons. First, definitions and practices of statistical registration regarding what can be considered an ‘ethnic minority’ or who can be labelled as a member of an immigrant population differ across borders, partly because the underlying processes of social construction of ‘otherness’ along ethnic lines are rooted in specific local and national contexts. Use of the term ‘ethnic entrepreneurship’ may conjure up images of something that is essentialistically ethnic about these entrepreneurs, while ‘ethnicity’ is anything but fixed or taken for granted. With this caveat in mind, we nonetheless use the terms ethnic and immigrant entrepreneurship interchangeably, therewith referring to self-employment of persons who have recent roots abroad – either themselves or (one of) their parents being born abroad – thus tending to be seen as non-mainstream. Secondly, international comparisons are hindered to some extent by different understandings of what constitutes selfemployment and how this is registered (Kloosterman & Rath 2003). In this chapter, we therefore pragmatically accept a country’s definition and registration of self-employment. Given these difficulties, international quantitative comparisons of immigrant entrepreneurship do have to be interpreted with care. Whatever their shortcomings, however, there is no doubt that significant differences exist between specific groups, cities, sectors and countries. Immigrant entrepreneurship is, hence, anything but selfevident. (Quite recently though, a new phenomenon has emerged, with successful entrepreneurs from countries including Brazil, India and China buying up large firms in the developed economies. The Indian entrepreneur Lakshmi Mittal who bought the steel firm Arcelor is a case in point.) Although the validity of some data is contestable, a recent OECD report shows that immigrants have a slightly higher propensity than natives to become entrepreneurs: 12.8 per cent of immigrants of working age compared to 12.1 per cent of natives are involved in non-agricultural entrepreneurship activities (see table 9.1, adopted from Mestres 2011). Note that this pertains to first-generation immigrants only! As highlighted in recent editions of International Migration Outlook, there is significant variation between countries (OECD 2009). In the UK, France, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden and Norway (and also in the USA), the share of entrepreneurs in total em-

Definitional difficulties


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ployment is a few percentage points higher for first-generation immigrants compared with natives. In Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece, ­Ireland, Germany, Austria and Switzerland the share of first-generation immigrants is lower. Table 9.1 Evolution of share of self-employment in total non-agricultural employment by place of birth in OECD countries, 1998-2008 (%) Foreign-born (%) Native-born (%) 1998- 2001- 2004- 2007- 1998- 2001- 2004- 20072000 2003 2006 2008 2000 2003 2006 2008 Austria 6.1 6.8 8.0 8.1 7.6 8.1 9.0 9.0 Belgium 16.1 15.4 14.8 14.7 13.5 12.4 11.9 12.0 Switzerland 9.9 9.5 8.8 11.5 12.5 12.4 Czech 22.5 24.5 20.3 15.8 15.4 15.1 Republic Germany 8.0 7.9 9.6 9.3 9.1 9.3 10.3 10.0 Denmark 9.8 8.7 8.4 10.0 6.9 6.6 6.7 7.0 Spain 19.9 14.2 10.3 11.9 16.7 15.6 15.7 16.1 France 10.4 10.0 10.9 10.6 8.3 7.6 7.8 8.0 Greece 11.8 9.8 11.0 10.2 28.1 26.9 26.7 26.5 Hungary 15.5 17.3 16.1 15.2 13.0 11.8 12.0 10.8 Ireland 16.8 14.4 11.0 8.7 12.4 12.3 12.6 13.6 Italy 17.7 15.9 17.9 17.0 23.3 22.6 24.2 23.4 Luxembourg 6.5 6.0 6.7 6.0 7.6 5.9 6.3 5.0 Netherlands 7.6 7.7 9.8 10.7 8.4 9.0 9.6 10.7 Norway 7.4 5.9 7.6 7.4 4.7 4.8 5.5 5.8 Poland 24.8 29.4 11.3 11.2 Portugal 14.9 14.3 12.7 12.6 17.4 17.7 16.1 15.3 Sweden 12.1 10.7 10.5 10.0 8.6 8.1 8.5 8.5 Slovak 7.6 19.9 23.6 9.6 12.2 13.0 Republic United 15.5 14.2 14.1 14.2 10.8 11.0 11.6 12.1 Kingdom United 9.4 8.6 9.3 10.0 8.9 8.8 9.5 9.2 States OECD 12.1 11.4 12.7 12.8 12.1 11.8 12.2 12.1 average Source: Eurostat Labour Force Survey, 1998-2008. US Current Population Survey, March Supplement, 1997-2008 (Mestres 2011)

Ethnic markets

It is commonly agreed that first generation immigrants often serve their own ‘ethnic community’ with products and services and thereby develop their own ‘ethnic markets’. It is also suggested that immigrant businesses operating within co-ethnic markets are doomed to a marginal existence. The idea here is that they must break out of the ethnic market in order

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to succeed (cf. Barrett, Jones & McEvoy 1996; Metcalf, Modood & Virdee 1996; Waldinger, Aldrich & Ward 1990). Others point to the one-sidedness of this view and question the inevitable need for this breaking out (Engelen 2001). Yet at the end of the day, survival and business success is contingent on wider opportunities. Today’s cities might offer a whole array of opportunities, but ability to perceive them and, subsequently, to grasp them is contingent on various factors related to the (potential) entrepreneurs themselves, the economic opportunity structure and the rules regulating access to the different segments of the opportunity structure. Unravelling key relationships between nascent immigrant entrepreneurs and the broader opportunity structure may enable us to identify policies which – intended or not – thwart immigrants’ grasping of entrepreneurial opportunities. We may then be better able to devise policies which will enhance the chances of immigrants to become successful entrepreneurs. This chapter first presents a brief overview of existing theoretical perspectives on immigrant entrepreneurship. It then presents a framework for analysing immigrant entrepreneurship and its potential contribution to social incorporation based on the mixed embeddedness approach, which emphasises the interplay between business opportunities and immigrant entrepreneurs and their resources. It subsequently explores how regulation may affect markets and, therefore, opportunities.

Opportunity structure

Agency-oriented perspectives: Entrepreneurs as individuals or group members Ivan Light authored the first book on immigrant entrepreneurs, Ethnic Enterprise in America. Since that volume was published back in 1972, virtually every student of immigrant entrepreneurship has avoided the direct use of neoclassical economics, with the notable exceptions of Bates (1997) and Kanas, Van Tubergen & Lippe (2009). Explanations of the success or – perhaps better – the degree of success of immigrant entrepreneurship have often stressed the role of individual entrepreneurs and their resources in terms of human, cultural and financial capital; that is, the emphasis is on the agency of the ‘ethnic’ actor or his or her ‘ethnic community’ (Peters 1999). Authors have zoomed in on immigrants’ cultural-specific proclivity towards self-employment (Metcalf, Modood & Virdee 1996; Werbner 2000), their embeddedness in (ethnic) social networks (Lee 1999; Light 2000; Waldinger 1996; Yoo 1998; Zhou 1992) or their mobilisation of various combinations of ethnic and other social resources (Light & Gold 2000; Yoon 1997). Yet there are also authors who emphasise the economic, social and political conditions that immigrants encounter in the receiving society (Kloosterman & Rath



Mobilising resources

Social embeddedness

Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath

2003). Obviously, few would doubt the importance of both the agency of the entrepreneur and structural societal conditions. The question is just how and to what degree they influence the development of immigrant entrepreneurship. This section examines these perspectives in greater detail before presenting an alternative view. The kind of business an immigrant starts and its role in the immigrant’s process of incorporation is, evidently, contingent on the resources this aspiring entrepreneur can mobilise. The entrepreneurial spirit that reigned supreme in the last quarter of the twentieth century emphasised the role of the individual. In line with this individualistic view, much research on entrepreneurship has been devoted to the actors themselves, mapping their personal characteristics and backgrounds. In some cases, when variations between nations had to be dealt with, attention was also paid to the constraints facing these aspiring and nascent entrepreneurs. The difficulties of getting finance or the liabilities of the tax system, for instance, were also taken into account to explain variations in entrepreneurship (Thornton 1999). The supply side of the fictitious entrepreneurial market, however, remained central in these neoclassical-inspired approaches. As researchers looking at immigrant entrepreneurship were confronted with significant variation between different groups of immigrants, they moved beyond this individualistic approach and started looking for explanations at the level of groups (Waldinger 1986; Light & Rosenstein 1995). Neither personal traits nor differential access to finance could explain the observed inter-group variations. The wider societal context had to be invoked, as certain groups of immigrants were pushed towards self-employment due to specific obstacles (i.e., discrimination), which hindered these groups in the labour market. In addition, group characteristics, especially cultural traits, were investigated as potential explanations for differences in entrepreneurship. Later, the potential set of resources that entrepreneurs could command was crucially widened by adding social capital to human, financial and cultural capital: people’s proclivity for entrepreneurship and their entrepreneurial success – or lack of it – were related to the size, density and nature of their social networks and the possibility to mobilise these networks for economic purposes. Social embeddedness has become a widespread and very fruitful approach to entrepreneurship in general, and to immigrant entrepreneurs in particular (Granovetter 1983, 1995; Waldinger 1986; Uzzi 1996, 1997; Portes & Sensenbrenner 1993; Light & Gold 2000). Students of this approach point to the social cohesion of ethnic communities and the importance of ethnic solidarity and relations of trust (e.g., Portes & Sensenbrenner 1993; Waldinger 1996). For them, networks are instrumental for acquiring knowledge, distributing information, recruiting capital and labour and establishing strong relations with clients and suppliers. Social embeddedness enables these entrepreneurs to reduce their

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


transaction costs by eliminating formal contracts, giving privileged access to economic resources and providing reliable expectations as to the effects of malfeasance. Particularly in cases where the entrepreneurs’ primary input is cheap and flexible labour, as is true of contractors in the rag trade, the reduction of transaction costs by mobilising social networks for labour recruitment seems key. The literature on social embeddedness formulates the issue basically in ethnic terms. Thinking in ethnic categories often implies the assumption that the social networks of immigrant entrepreneurs are confined to their co-ethnics, that they have little or no social contact with people outside their own group, and that ethnic ties are more important, more resilient and less permeable than other types of social ties. However, most entrepreneurs likely have a mixed and gendered network, comprising co-ethnics, other immigrants and mainstream people, and these networks are likely to change over time. The number of social relations may, whether intended or not, increase or decrease; the network can become thicker or thinner or spread out and assume a different spatial basis; and relations can become many-stranded or single-stranded or assume different meanings. Taking advantage of social embeddedness is a complex and dynamic process, with success by no means guaranteed. An entrepreneur might be successful at recruiting workers by mobilising his or her social network, but what if the market shrinks following an economic recession, technological changes or new regulations (see Rath 2000; Schrover 2001)? Likewise, an entrepreneur from a poor community might tap a network of supportive peers, but since they are poor, they will not be able to put up much money. This impacts the entrepreneurial opportunities and can keep the entrepreneur at the lower end of the market (Wolff & Rath 2000). Walton-Roberts and Hiebert (1997) cite the hypothetical entrepreneur who cannot fire his son-in-law without jeopardising his relations with family. Flap, Kumcu & Bulder (2000) discuss the problem of one-sided social capital, which is connected to what Granovetter (1983) once called the ‘strength of weak ties’. The circulation of new information is limited in tight groups and, subsequently, so too are the chances of innovation and business success. What we learn is that social capital is connected to cultural, human and financial capital (Light & Gold 2000), and it is the product of the interaction of structural factors, such as migration history, and processes of social, economic and political incorporation in the mainstream, as well as their spatial variations. The impact of social capital is contingent on the goals pursued and the political and economic forces at work. Specific circumstances foster social capital and make its use feasible and rewarding, but none of this is automatic. Granovetter (1995) went beyond a narrow social embeddedness perspective to distinguish two types of embeddedness: relational and structural. Relational embeddedness refers to ‘economic actors’ and involves

Closed ethnic networks

Relational and structural embeddedness


Set of options

Interactive model

Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath

personal relations with one another. Immigrant entrepreneurs are thus said to be embedded in a (relatively) concrete network of social relations with customers, suppliers, banks, competitors and, not to be ignored, law enforcers. Structural embeddedness relates to the broader network to which these actors belong. This concept seems to transcend direct personal relations. Although Granovetter (1995) distinguishes ‘social relations’ from ‘institutional arrangements or generalised morality’, he does not spell out this latter category in any detail, and no notion of opportunities is referred to (see also Zukin & DiMaggio 1990). Enriching the analysis by including cultural traits and other, more elusive, resources as social capital on the supply side has, however, proven to be insufficient to grasp entrepreneurship. The other part of the equation, the demand side – or in other words, the set of opportunities that can be discovered and exploited by individual entrepreneurs – cannot be ignored in explaining entrepreneurship (Thornton & Flynn 2003; Ibrahim & Galt 2003). The set of options that actors or, in this case, entrepreneurs face is also shaped and conditioned by macro-structures (Power 2001). A first effort to move beyond actors’ perspectives and address crossborder differences is set out in Ethnic Entrepreneurs: Immigrant Business in Industrial Societies by Waldinger, Aldrich & Ward (1990; see Rath 2000 for a critical appraisal). The authors suggest that in order to understand and explain ethnic entrepreneurial strategies, ethnic and socio-cultural factors should be combined with politico-economic factors. In their opinion, the set of politico-economic factors includes access to ethnic and non-ethnic consumer markets and to ownership in the form of business vacancies, competition for vacancies and government policies. Many researchers still consider this interactive model an important step towards a more comprehensive theoretical approach, even though it is more like a classification than an explanatory model. After its publication, various researchers observed shortcomings in the interactive model. Light and Rosenstein (1995) stressed a number of methodological flaws. Collins, Gibson and Alcorso (see Collins et al. 1995) felt insufficient attention was devoted to gender issues, whereas Tait and Castles (see Collins et al. 1995) deplored the absence of processes of racialisation. Rath and Kloosterman (2000) criticised the a priori categorisation of immigrants as ethnic groups and the concomitant assumption that as ethnic entrepreneurs, immigrants act differently by default than mainstream entrepreneurs. Bonacich (1993) and Rath (2000, 2002) disapprove of the model’s narrow and static approach to economic and regulatory factors. Indeed, the model’s creators view market conditions in terms of the ethnicisation or de-ethnicisation of consumer markets, and confine regulatory factors to a short list of laws and regulations that specifically apply to immigrants. Despite this criticism, the debate went into another direction after publication of Ethnic Entrepreneurs. Again the focus moved to the supply side, or to the entrepreneurs themselves. Light and Gold (2000) and Yoon (1997)

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


gave ethnic and class resources a central role in their analyses. These authors consider immigrant entrepreneurship to be the product of the mobilisation of a combination of resources. Broader contextual characteristics still matter in their presentation, particularly with respect to the fit between a specific set of resources and contextual characteristics, but they do not theoretically elaborate upon the latter. Other researchers have followed mainstream economic sociologists such as Granovetter (1995) and focus on the entrepreneurs’ social networks and the impact of these on entrepreneurship (e.g., Lee 1999; Light 2000; Waldinger 1986; Yoo 1998; Zhou 1992).

The mixed embeddedness perspective: Matching entrepreneurs with the opportunity structure The concept of mixed embeddedness has been put forward as another interactionist approach to encompass both actors (the immigrant entrepreneurs) and the opportunity structure within a comprehensive analytical framework (Kloosterman et al. 1999; Kloosterman 2010a, 2010b; Rath 2000, 2002; Engelen 2001; Kloosterman & Rath 2001, 2003; Light 2005; Rusinovic 2006; Brandellero & Kloosterman 2009). This analytical framework combines the micro-level of the individual entrepreneur and his or her resources, with the meso-level of the local opportunity structure, while linking the latter, in a looser way, to the macro-institutional framework. Doing this combines insights on the resources necessary for an (aspiring/ nascent) entrepreneur with views on opportunity structures. Moreover, because the dynamics of the opportunity structure are explicitly part of the model, we are able to incorporate changes in the local economy. With this innovative analytical framework we can address the question of how to systematically explain patterns of variation in immigrant entrepreneurship – between groups, between sectors, between place and countries and between historical periods. Although the analytical framework was devised for explaining immigrant entrepreneurship, it can also be applied to business start-ups more generally. Opportunities for entrepreneurs in capitalist societies are intrinsically linked to markets (Kloosterman & Rath 2001). Opportunities occur in markets. There has to be a sufficient (perhaps as yet latent) demand for a certain bundle of products, otherwise no entrepreneur can make a living in that niche. Markets are, thus, in our perspective, a crucial component of the opportunity structure. Openings for new businesses occur or are created in specific, identifiable product markets. Setting up shop in a particular market, consequently, entails a delineation of a specific set of products, opting for a specific set of possible production processes, and targeting more or less identifiable group(s) of clients delimited in time and space (Swedberg 1994: 255).

Mixed embeddedness



Accessibility and openings

Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath

To be able to start a particular business in a market where a demand seems to exist, an aspiring entrepreneur has to have the right kinds of resources (financial, human, cultural and social capital and, arguably, also ethnic capital). Markets, in other words, have to be accessible to entrepreneurs. Most aspiring entrepreneurs, and this holds a fortiori true for immigrant entrepreneurs, tend to lack financial resources or do not have easy access to significant funds (Wolff & Rath 2000). This implies that, generally speaking, these aspiring entrepreneurs can only start businesses that require relatively modest outlays of capital. Forms of highly capital-intensive (mass) production necessitate a large minimum efficient scale and are, hence, not easily accessible to these newcomers (Chandler 1994). It is therefore hard to find business start-ups by individual entrepreneurs in mass production or mass distribution. We do find newcomers in small-scale businesses in manufacturing, but as a rule only where economies of scale are hard to achieve. New businesses that require only small initial outlays can differ considerably in their needs with respect to another crucial resource: human capital. To start, for instance, a hairdresser’s shop little is needed in terms of (formal at least) educational qualifications. This is, of course, very different in the case of many producer services (e.g., consultancy) or highly innovative manufacturing such as the famous startups in Silicon Valley of the 1990s (Saxenian 1999, 2002, 2006). Both require highly skilled entrepreneurs. The necessary educational qualifications are, however, determined not only by the intrinsic qualities of the work involved, but are also stipulated in many cases by state regulations. The success of immigrant entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley is undoubtedly related to the USA’s favourable immigration regime and certainly to the extension of tens of thousands of H1B visas. We will address the impact of the regulatory regime below more in detail. Looking at immigrant populations, we note a marked polarisation with regard to skill level. Many advanced economies host large contingents of highly skilled professionals from non-OECD countries. Their rise is partly a result of a shift to immigration policies favouring – in various ways – highly skilled immigrants (Docquiera & Marfouk 2004). At the other end of the spectrum, there are still, also, large numbers of low-skilled immigrants (Held et al. 1999: 324-325; Wadhwa et al. 2007). To understand immigrant entrepreneurship, we have to take both poles into account and realise that immigrants may have the option of starting a firm needing a high level of (formal) human capital. The relevant set of opportunities open to aspiring immigrant entrepreneurs therefore consists of openings for small businesses along a broad continuum of skill qualifications from only primary schooling (or even less) to college and university degrees. The great divide here runs parallel to that in the labour market, between primary schooling and the rest.

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


The opportunity structure is not just important due to the number and sort of openings it offers with respect to the human capital necessary for new businesses. Another essential characteristic of the opportunity structure and its openings involves the chances present for expansion of fledgling businesses. Are these markets that are open to (immigrant) entrepreneurs with relatively modest financial means characterised by long-term growth or, on the contrary, by structural decline? Urban economies tend to have sunrise and sunset economic activities, and this dynamic creates changes in the opportunity structure. With the transition from industrial to post-industrial economies, the profile of the opportunity structure changes significantly, in general increasing opportunities for small firms (Kloosterman & Rath 2001). Openings for immigrant entrepreneurs, as Roger Waldinger (1986, 1996) showed, occur not only in markets that are structurally expanding, but may also appear in markets that are shrinking on a long-term basis. As long as the outflow of the indigenous and longer-established immigrant entrepreneurs out from these sunset markets is larger than the rate of contraction, openings are formed. The perspective for eking out a decent living in these so-called ‘vacancy-chain openings’ is expected to be quite different from that in structurally growing markets. In other words, the patterns of socio-economic incorporation of immigrant entrepreneurs may crucially hinge on the growth potential of a market. This growth potential can be measured by looking at structural trends in total employment or turnover in a specific market. As we are interested not just in immigrant entrepreneurship itself, but also in the relationship between entrepreneurship and upward social mobility, the growth potential has to be included in the model of the opportunity structure. By focusing only on that part of the opportunity structure where relatively modest outlays of capital are needed, the variable financial capital is, in effect, held constant. Also left out at this stage are barriers in the form of rules and regulations, both formal (e.g., legally excluding immigrants from setting up a business by withholding permits to foreigners) and informal (e.g., social closure by business associations, for instance, by blocking aspiring immigrant entrepreneurs from office spaces). These are treated below. In addition, accessibility of markets is defined in relation to the level of human capital that is needed to start a business. The other resources, social (and ethnic) capital, will be dealt with when analysing the resources needed for starting and maintaining a business in a particular segment of the opportunity structure, as the relationship between social capital and accessibility of the opportunity is anything but straightforward. Unpacking the opportunity structure in two dimensions is just the first stage of the mixed embeddedness approach. The model of the opportunity structure is aimed at dealing with a significant change in the supply side (i.e., more highly-skilled immigrants

Growth potential


Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath

from non-OECD countries) and in the demand side (i.e., new opportunities for small firms arising from the post-industrial transformation of urban economies by the shift to services, outsourcing, market fragmentation and the availability of cheap ICT). The model has been constructed to be able to deal with new forms of immigrant entrepreneurship as well, and it allows us to go beyond the archetypical immigrant entrepreneur with his or her business firmly stuck at the lower end of the market in either small-scale retailing or cheap restaurants. Its genesis then is partly based on empirical observation of new developments in immigrant entrepreneurship and partly on analyses of post-industrial urban changes and their impact on immigrants (Sassen 1991; Waldinger 1996; Kloosterman 1996, 2000, 2003; Rath 2000, 2002, 2007). Below, we schematically capture these two crucial dimensions of the opportunity structure for new firms, access and growth potential, in a matrix that distinguishes four kinds of markets (table 9.2). Table 9.2 A typology of the opportunity structure: Markets split according to accessibility and growth potential Growth potential

Human capital

Stagnating markets

Expanding markets

High thresholds

Stagnating, high-skilled markets

Post-industrial or high-skilled markets

Low thresholds

Vacancy-chain markets

Post-industrial or low-skilled markets

Let us now examine these markets in greater detail. Stagnating, high-skilled markets

Level of human capital

In the upper left-hand quadrant are openings that require a relatively high level of human capital, but are located in markets that are either stagnating or even in decline. Given the level of human capital needed in these markets, participation in them could also provide access to openings in expanding markets or, if one also includes the job market, to potentially much more rewarding jobs. It might be that non-monetary rewards (e.g., honour and prestige or independence) compensate for the disadvantages of the stagnating market or that strong discrimination in the labour market has blocked other possibilities for high-skilled immigrants. In both cases, chances for upward mobility are slim. For now, these openings seem, on the whole, unlikely to attract many immigrant entrepreneurs, and we will leave them aside below.

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


Vacancy-chain markets In the bottom left-hand quadrant, we find markets that are easily accessible and, consequently, attractive for many aspiring immigrant entrepreneurs. Starting a business here requires little human capital, as we are dealing with small-scale, low-skilled, labour-intensive production. In terms of growth potential, however, they are less-than-promising, as demand in these markets is stagnant, at best, and profits are accordingly low. Notwithstanding the stagnating demand in these kinds of markets, openings are created, as indicated earlier, through the vacancy-chain process whereby established entrepreneurs leave these lower rungs of the ladder – in terms of prospects and work conditions – and thus create room for newcomers (Waldinger 1996; Kloosterman & Van der Leun 1999, 2003). Even with a significant number of entrepreneurs moving out, many of this kind of market tend to remain near or past the point of saturation, as (new) immigrants continuously seek their fortune there and start businesses. Given the likelihood of cutthroat (price) competition in these stagnating markets, the failure rate is relatively high. We find this kind of accessible and stagnant market in, for instance, small-scale retailing such as groceries and bakeries and in the lower segments of the restaurant business. Snack bars are a good example of the latter. In the Netherlands, these very small-scale (mostly take-away) restaurants are on the decline, due largely to competition from fast food chains and the extended opening hours of supermarkets. While Dutch entrepreneurs are quitting the snack-bar businesses, immigrants (especially Turks and Egyptians) are increasingly entering it. This intense competition combined with smallscale, low-value-added production with low-skilled labour as the main input provides a fertile environment for deployment of informal economic strategies (Cross 1995; Kloosterman, Van der Leun & Rath 1997, 1999; Rath 2002). Another type of businesses that might fall under this heading are specific forms of light manufacturing thriving on low-skilled labour and requiring a location close to large (urban) markets (hence, they cannot be easily relocated to low-wage countries). The small-scale manufacture of clothing in sweatshops has typically seen not only a concentration of immigrant businesses but also a succession of different immigrant groups (Waldinger 1986; Dicken 1992; Rath 2002). The markets in this quadrant are, arguably, the traditional and quintessential breeding grounds for immigrant entrepreneurs in advanced urban economies. Markets that are easy accessible are, in a sense, a mixed blessing. The low threshold enables entrepreneurs with relatively modest resources to get access. However, many aspiring entrepreneurs may opt for the same markets to start a business. If, as in our examples, the market is stagnating or even shrinking, the number of firms may be continually at or even over the point of saturation, resulting in permanent cutthroat competition. Competition in these markets tends to be mainly on price and

Small-scale retailers or manufactures

Price competition


Informal strategies

Break out

Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath

not on quality. To survive, entrepreneurs must do anything they can to reduce the cost of labour, which is the main input in these businesses. As their resources in terms of financial and human capital are, by definition, limited, they put in long hours for low wages. Employing other people – first and foremost family members – can be done only at very low wages, frequently beneath the legal minimum wage. Resorting to informal methods of production is a structural feature of this kind of businesses (Kloosterman, Van der Leun & Rath 1997). Survival may even depend on the deployment of informal strategies. Informal production on a more permanent basis requires a specific kind of social embeddedness, as trust is essential for economic transactions that are kept off the books and where, hence, appeals to the formal judicial system are unlikely. In most cases, this means a strong embeddedness in the ethnic community and social capital may largely overlap with ethnic capital. Many businesses that start in vacancy-chain openings are dependent on social and ethnic capital not just for their inputs (mainly labour), but also for their customers. If the customers are predominantly co-ethnics, we are dealing with an ethnic market. Chances of becoming successful in a vacancy-chain business, then, are rather slim. In a regular vacancy-chain opening, it is hard to keep out other competitors. In the special case of an ethnic market, the pool of potential entrants is more limited, as they can only come from the same group of immigrants, which may take more time. However, if certain groups, at some stage, are able to close off particular opportunities by controlling access to information, office spaces or vacancies relating to these openings, other groups may be kept out and niches created (Waldinger 1996; Rath 2000). This requires a high level of group cohesion and group identity combined with a set of opportunities that is sufficiently transparent and limited to be monitored and controlled. If informal barriers cannot be raised, competition will remain fierce and prospects poor. Ethnic markets form no exception, although entrepreneurs in these markets may have an easier start in catering to captive markets, and it may take longer to reach the point of saturation. However, as said, captivity works both ways: after a while the immigrant entrepreneurs may become trapped in the confined market of co-ethnics. The only way out (and up), then, is by breaking out (Barrett, Jones & McEvoy 2001; Engelen 2001). Breaking out would translate into a movement of an immigrant firm in our model from the bottom-left quadrant to the right, either the bottom right (more likely) or the top right (less likely). Such a move to other more promising (i.e., growing) markets would seem rather difficult for many entrepreneurs who started in vacancy-chain openings, as their profile of resources is hard to change. First, it is hard to accumulate financial capital in markets characterised by fierce competition. Secondly, the same could be said for human capital, although more informal

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


skills (notably marketing knowledge) can be acquired through on-the-job training and experience. The breaking-out of Turkish bakeries in Amsterdam from their captive ‘ethnic’ market to more mainstream markets involved changes in products, presentation and marketing. Such breaking-out could occur only after the entrepreneurs perceived the new opportunities and acquired the necessary (informal) skills to implement these changes. Thirdly, social capital and especially ethnic capital in these businesses is, we postulate, deployed more to reduce labour costs than to move into new markets. ‘Strong’ ties that enable informal production are less needed for breaking out; instead ‘weak’ ties are required through which strategic information is transferred about other markets (Granovetter 1983). The ‘other side of embeddedness’ comes into play here: specific forms of strong embeddedness may even hamper successful incorporation at a certain stage (Waldinger 1995; Rath 2003). The likelihood of becoming part of an ethnic Lumpen bourgeoisie is not a very attractive prospect. Only those aspiring entrepreneurs who have few other options would choose this. They have to be pushed into these vacancy-chain openings by sheer discrimination (being excluded from the job market or offered lower wages) or, more generally, by high rates of unemployment.

Reduce labour costs

Post-industrial or low-skilled The bottom-right quadrant contains low-threshold markets with high growth potential. This is not, as one may tend to think, an oxymoron. Post-industrial societies are evidently capable of generating these kinds of markets, especially in personal services (Piore & Sabel 1984; Reich 1991; Kloosterman 1996; Odaka & Sawai 1999; OECD 2000). Highly accessible markets are not necessarily confined to those with a lack of growth potential. They may also be found in markets that are in earlier phases of the product lifecycle. Such dynamic markets offer openings for newcomers who are open to more innovative approaches. They require no special skills or large outlays of capital and may, therefore, also be open to newcomers from less-developed countries. In addition, the regulatory regime usually lags behind the actual developments, and hence, the rules on educational qualifications needed to start a business may (still) be rather meagre or even non-existent in this early phases. This holds true, for instance, in rapidly developing markets in the personal services where dual-earner couples are fuelling demand for a whole array of services, from housecleaning to pet-care activities. Rapidly growing markets may also be found in markets where activities were previously monopolised by the state, but have now been turned over to the market as a part of the drive towards privatisation. The market for postal services and parcel delivery, which have been gradually liberalised in many

Emerging markets


Heterogeneous social networks

Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath

European countries, may fall under this heading. Other possible examples are the immigrant firms that build stage sets for the movie industry in Hollywood (Scott 2005) and the South-Asian immigrants in Birmingham who produce bhangra music (McEwan, Pollard & Henry 2005). These markets are, surely, very attractive for aspiring entrepreneurs – immigrant and indigenous alike. Being appealing to indigenous entrepreneurs, they may attempt to construct barriers for immigrants by, for instance, demanding minimum educational qualifications to try to close off this market and create protected niches (Waldinger 1996). These openings resemble vacancy-chain openings by being highly accessible. They differ in one crucial respect, however, namely growth potential. These markets are structurally expanding as demand is increasing on a long-term basis. Competition, accordingly, is of a different nature, and entrepreneurs opt, we hypothesise, for different strategies, in turn involving another set of resources. Moreover, being in the vanguard of economic transformations, many of these markets (especially those for personal services) cater to more affluent customers than vacancy-chain businesses. As markets grow, there is much less pressure on entrepreneurs to cut corners and drive down prices by reducing labour costs in informal ways. The need for firm embedment in an ethnic community is, we postulate, much less. In addition, given the different composition of the consumer constituency, entrepreneurs exploiting these openings might benefit from extensive social contacts with other groups, especially the (more affluent) indigenous population. Being embedded in heterogeneous social networks may even constitute a prerequisite for starting a business here, as information about new consumption habits is essential.2 The different makeup of the social capital involved and the greater prospects of capital formation due to higher margins make chances of upward mobility considerably greater in this quadrant than in vacancy-chain openings. We expect then that aspiring entrepreneurs, if they are able to access heterogeneous social networks, will be pulled towards these openings. Even if discrimination is not significant and unemployment among immigrants is low, people may still opt for this kind of self-employment, which may open up avenues of upward mobility. The post-industrial transformation of urban economies may therefore offer even low-skilled immigrants a new perspective.


An example of this is the migrant-origin musicians in Paris who want to make it in the music scene. Lack of heterogeneous social networks including the music industry employees who serve as gatekeepers for record deals and performances might even block their very entry to this market (Brandellero & Kloosterman 2009).

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


Post-industrial or high-skilled The fourth and last type of market is the one characterised by a high threshold in terms of human capital and large growth potential, being in the early phase of the product life cycle. This type of market, top-right quadrant, is usually associated with the brave new, dynamic world of hightech capitalism where innovative Schumpeterian entrepreneurs can make fortunes within short span of time. As Anna Saxenian (1999, 2002, 2006) and Katja Rusinovic (2006) show, more and more immigrants from nonOECD countries – albeit with an educational system that in some segments can compete with those in OECD countries (such as Turkey, China and India) – are starting businesses in these markets. In addition, to hightech firms, we also find small firms that combine high demands in terms of human capital with significant growth potential in producer services (e.g., consultancy, law and advertising firms). Both highly educated firstgeneration and notably second-generation immigrants can be expected to start businesses in this attractive and expanding segment of post-industrial urban economies. To a large extent, the same kind of reasoning with respect to strategies, resources and trajectory of incorporation discussed above apply here. But, in contrast, to the openings just mentioned, these opportunities come with much stricter demands regarding human capital. Competition tends to be on the unique qualities of a product, and this can be based either on high-tech (ICT) or high-concept (e.g., producer services and cultural industries) activities (Kloosterman 2004). Almost exclusively immigrants with high educational qualifications can start a business here. A significant number of highly educated immigrants now come from non-OECD countries (Docquiera & Marfouk 2004). The increasing possibilities to get a good education at home or abroad have helped to create a large pool of mobile entrepreneurial immigrants. If they are able to secure a residence permit and their educational qualifications are acknowledged, they are in much the same position as highly qualified indigenous entrepreneurs. The difference, however, may lie in the composition of their social networks. If they are only embedded in homogeneous ethnic networks, they may run into the same difficulties as their lesser skilled counterparts, who are unable to connect to growth markets in their place of settlement. This obstacle may be less of a problem, however, if they have established inter-ethnic relationships or if they are well connected transnationally, as are the Chinese entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley (Saxenian 1999, 2002, 2006; Taylor & Leonard 2002). Theoretically, this kind of immigrant entrepreneur may be strongly embedded in their region of origin and rely on strategic suppliers there, while being located close to important consumer markets without local strong ties. This may be the case in some high-tech branches selling directly to consumer markets, but not in producer services where strong ties with customers are


Robert Kloosterman and Jan Rath

essential. Again, heterogeneous social capital is a decisive resource that helps would-be entrepreneurs to discover and exploit the post-industrial or high-skilled opportunities. Ethnic markets

Ethnic markets

Much literature on immigrant entrepreneurship has focused on a specific kind of category of opportunities: the so-called ‘ethnic markets’ (Waldinger, Aldrich & Ward 1990; Rusinovic 2006; Light 2004, 2005; Panayiotopoulos 2006). Demand in these markets is for specific ‘ethnic’ products that are in one way or another linked to the region of origin (foodstuffs or perfumes, but also DVDs and CDs with images and music from that area). These markets mostly arise from the articulation of ‘ethnic demand’ as a consequence of the immigration of sufficiently large numbers of particular groups of immigrants. The formation of spatially concentrated settlement of (mainly first-generation) immigrants in urban areas strongly contributes to the articulation of this demand. Immigrant entrepreneurs are usually best positioned to benefit from these opportunities, as they tend to have the required knowledge of products, suppliers, and consumers. They have, moreover, the necessary credibility to cater to these niche markets of coethnics. Ethnic markets are, in most cases, rather limited. These markets tend to be captive markets, but captivity here is a double-edged sword. It attaches customers to the firms of their co-ethnics and helps in the first difficult phase. However, at a later stage, these same entrepreneurs may run against the constraints of these same markets (Ram et al. 2000). Expanding the business, then, comes down to broadening the consumer base and stepping out of the ethnic market. Given the variety of ethnic markets (and more specifically the range in the barriers to entry), they are not considered as constituting specific openings. They can be found, in principle, in each of the four sets of openings identified above. When a shop is taken over by an immigrant, a vacancy-chain opening, it can orientate itself mainly to co-ethnics as, for instance, has happened with many bakeries and groceries in former working-class neighbourhoods. We also find services such as consultancies and travel agencies that primarily cater to ethnic markets. Given that these are subject to the same general conditions of accessibility and growth potential as immigrant businesses which from the onset are oriented towards broader markets, we consider ethnic markets, in principle, special cases of the four types of openings of the opportunity structure model. They are special in the sense that they may offer a – at least temporarily – protected niche for immigrants. In many cases, however, either the entrepreneur will try to escape the limits of the ethnic market (breaking out) or the ethnic market itself will be eroded by the dynamics of the specific ethnic group (e.g., spatial dispersal, shifts in taste towards

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


mainstream) or by mainstream businesses breaking into ethnic markets and selling ‘ethnic’ products (Engelen 2001). The tourism and leisure industry may be a case in point, especially where immigrant entrepreneurs carve out a niche by marketing ethnic diversity and selling (real or perceived) ‘ethnic products’ (Aytar & Rath 2012; Pang & Rath 2007; Rath 2005, 2007). Lastly, whereas the four types can be determined in advance on the basis of the two dimensions that refer to structural characteristic of markets (meso-level), ethnic markets can be identified only by looking at the individual firm and analysing the composition of the consumer population (micro-level). Regulation matters Markets are not just places where demand and supply meet. They are, first and foremost, social constructs embedded in specific socio-cultural and institutional contexts with different sets of regulations that differ moreover across time and place. Markets can be regulated in numerous dimensions. Regulations may pertain to products, suppliers, customers, contracts and expected behaviour (Engelen 2001). Regulations may thus outlaw, effectively ban, or – on the contrary – promote certain products, suppliers, customers or ways of dealing with each other. Markets are always regulated in one way or another, even though the form and level of regulation might vary. Regulation is not an isolated phenomenon; it is contingent on prevailing models of allocating economic citizenship rights to economic actors and on the division of labour between market, state and family. These models, contradictory and incomplete as they might be, stipulate which goods and services and which actors have legitimacy when it comes to market exchange, and under what conditions market exchange and price-fixing take place. As such, regulations may make it more difficult or easier for newcomers such as immigrant entrepreneurs to explore certain opportunities for businesses. To get a better handle on immigrant entrepreneurship, we thus have to take a closer look at how markets can be regulated. Regulation comes in different forms. There are ‘sticks’, which Ewald Engelen refers to as ‘legislation per se’, ‘carrots’ (financial incentives and disincentives), and ‘sermons’ (persuasion), all different forms in complex packages that define what is ‘possible’ in a market. Nor should regulation be confused with state regulation. A multitude of agents play a role in regulation processes. These include local, national and international governmental agents, unions, quangos, non-profit organisations, voluntary associations, and individuals and their social networks. Regulation can manifest in thick or thin ways. In other words, it can be either imposed and enforced or more a matter of voluntary action sanctioned by particular social groups. Even in cases where legislation itself seems non-existent or conveniently put aside,




Different capitalist economies

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as might be the case in the informal economy (see Kloosterman, Van der Leun & Rath 1999; Rath 2000, 2002), economic transactions by individuals are still regulated in one way or another. However, rules themselves go only so far, they also have to be enforced. This holds true for formal as well as for informal forms of regulations. Regulation is, moreover, not just a matter of repression and constraining, but also of enabling. Suppressing illicit practices, such as by prosecuting perpetrators of tax-dodging and infringement of labour and immigration laws, is an important manifestation of regulation (repression), but so too are decisions to tolerate these practices and not prosecute them. The plethora of business support programmes in existence also constitutes a form of regulation. Oc and Tiesdell (1999) and Ram (1998) describe assistance provided to particular social groups by government-sponsored training and enterprise councils and ethnic minority business initiatives in an effort to improve their market position. Light and Pham (1998) describe the success and failure of initiatives by government and private financial institutions to give micro-credit to micro-entrepreneurs in the USA. Successful or not, these are efforts to change the market landscape, and as such they are forms of regulation. Van Niekerk, Rath and others (2008) developed an inventory of the various ways in which 32 European countries have tried to strengthen immigrant entrepreneurship. An overview of the results of this study can be found in the box at the end of this section. But regulation is not just a matter of local or national actors. Some forms of regulation have a global sweep. The international garment production and trade are governed by the supranational Multi-Fibre Arrangement and the World Trade Organization (Appelbaum & Gereffi 1994; Mitter 1986; Raes 2000a, 2000b). Other forms of regulation govern national economies, such as welfare state regulations (Esping-Andersen 1990), or govern particular locations, as in cases of redlining particular neighbourhoods or establishing economic enterprise zones (Green 1991; Hall 1996; Kloosterman, Van der Leun & Rath 1997). Still other forms of regulation target specific sectors (e.g., construction, ice cream parlours, prostitution or the garment industry, see Rath 2002) or particular social groups (unqualified job-seekers, undocumented immigrants or high-tech professionals; see Engbersen et al. 1999; Saxenian 1999; Van der Leun 2003). Regulations also affect immigrant entrepreneurship and the opportunity structure in a more indirect way (Kloosterman 2000, 2010a). Different types of capitalist economies generate different kinds of opportunity structures and different sets of incentives for immigrants to become entrepreneurs. Broadly speaking, the liberal market economies (such as the USA) and the coordinated market economies (e.g., Germany) differ in their levels of commodification or, in other words, in the scope for certain (post-industrial) markets that might, in principle, be accessible

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for nascent entrepreneurs lacking educational qualifications and financial capital (examples of such markets are childcare and the outsourcing of other social reproduction tasks). Economies also differ in how insiders (workers and often also the self-employed) are shielded from competition from newcomers by barriers in the form of rules, laws and measures to protect existing enterprises. In Germany, for instance, insiders are (still) considerably better protected against job loss than in the USA. The other side of the coin, however, is that it is (still) much easier for outsiders to get a foothold in the labour market in the USA than in Germany (see also Esping-Andersen 1990; Unger 2010). Given the level and the duration of welfare benefits, outsiders are also more pushed towards active labour market participation in the USA than in Germany. So, both the set of opportunities and the set of incentives among immigrants or members of ethnic minority groups may differ across borders, thereby generating diverging profiles of immigrant entrepreneurship in terms of rates, sectoral distributions and chances for upward mobility. These complex and extensive institutional frameworks tend to be multifaceted and interlocked. This makes them prone to path-dependency (Mahoney 2000). In addition, best practices that serve one country well, may not be suitable for another (see, e.g., Van Niekerk & Rath 2008; Rath & Swagerman 2011).

Policy matters Immigrant entrepreneurship still comprises small, often somewhat decrepit stores run by recent or not so recent arrivals from former colonies or by former guest workers. Lately, however, a new layer has been added, with immigrants becoming visible in high-value activities from the design of software to the running of advertising agencies. This transformation is attributable in part to the increasing educational attainment of many immigrants and members of ethnic minorities. But it is also driven by shifts in the structure of advanced urban economies which created openings for small businesses that were (nearly) absent a few decades ago. We now find immigrant entrepreneurs in a much wider array of markets, and they are, arguably, contributing more to the economies of their place of settlement. We earlier distinguished different types of opportunities and markets and we indicated the trajectories of incorporation that are associated with each of these types. We also looked at the distribution of these types of opportunities and saw that the ways they are regulated are partly contingent on the larger institutional framework. Governmental rules, regulations and practices help shape ethnic minorities’ self-employment trajectories. Policy debates and interventions influence the emergence of



Revising policies

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entrepreneurial opportunities and further development of ethnic business. Policies with respect to immigrant entrepreneurs have been very much part of the broader neoliberal paradigm that dominated much of the policy in developed countries between 1980 and 2008. The policies, then, were directed to create more room for (small) entrepreneurship in general by enlarging markets (privatisation) and by removing barriers to setting up businesses (deregulation). The extent to which and the way these policies were actually implemented differed from country to country (Prasad 2006; Van Niekerk & Rath 2008) and from city to city (Rath and Swagerman 2011). Regarding policies directed partly or wholly at immigrant or ethnic entrepreneurs, we also find significant variation between countries. This variation can be partly explained by the country’s attitude towards neoliberal policies more generally and towards small business in particular. The relatively high number of such policies in the UK demonstrates the importance attached to entrepreneurship in that country. A second reason for variation is found in the immigration history. Countries with a more recent experience of immigration seem to lag behind countries with a much longer history of newcomers. Countries such as Spain and Italy have relatively few such polices compared to, for instance, Germany, which has a much longer post-war tradition of immigration. A third explanation is the way the state perceives and defines immigrants or ethnic minorities. France, with its strong emphasis on citizenship, in principle, makes no distinctions on the basis of origin of its citizens. It therefore has very few policies aimed specifically at immigrants or ethnic entrepreneurs. Seen from the perspective outlined earlier, three options can be discerned for policymakers to foster immigrant entrepreneurship. The first option is to boost the resources of immigrants in terms of human capital (notably entrepreneurial skills), (access to) financial capital and social capital. The second option is to increase the opportunities by creating or expanding accessible markets either through change in regulatory regimes or through direct involvement with markets (Kloosterman 2003). The third option is to make the processes of matching between the (nascent) entrepreneurs and opportunities more efficient. The actual policies implemented to promote immigrant entrepreneurship focus mainly on the agency of the entrepreneur, rather than on the structural societal conditions of entrepreneurship. Policies seem to be geared mostly towards the nascent entrepreneurs and to a much lesser extent to the already established immigrant and ethnic entrepreneurs. They aim primarily at raising awareness among immigrants to stimulate them to become more entrepreneurial while improving their human and social capital and their access to financial capital. These are all sensible policy goals, but given our analysis of how opportunities are structured the more or less exclusive focus on start-ups seems to ignore the importance

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


of expanding the resources of entrepreneurs who are already active. The mixed embeddedness approach demonstrates that to escape the low-wage drudgery of vacancy-chain markets, entrepreneurs need to expand their resources in terms of human, financial and social capital. Most policies aim mainly at the supply side, taking the opportunity structure for granted. One could say that privatisation and more autonomous processes of outsourcing by firms and households create more markets, while overall schemes of deregulation lower barriers of entry for entrepreneurs across the board, including immigrant and ethnic minority entrepreneurs. Some policies, however, aim more exclusively at increasing access to opportunities for immigrant entrepreneurs by introducing more favourable regulation and by strengthening intermediary organisations (e.g., training bureaus, consultancies and business associations). Apart from this ‘soft institutionalism’, there seems to be, on the whole, a lack of understanding of the transformation of immigrant entrepreneurship and the kind of markets (migrant) entrepreneurs are now operating in and how this relates to trajectories of incorporation. We propose, hence, the implementation of a new set of policies specifically aimed at immigrant entrepreneurs in vacancy-chain markets to augment their resources with, at the same time, revision of regulations (national and local, formal and informal) that still hamper immigrant and other entrepreneurs in postindustrial activities.

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Thornton, P. H. & K. H. Flynn (2003), ‘Entrepreneurship, networks, and geographies’, in Z. J. Acs & D. B. Audretsch (eds), Handbook of Entrepreneurship Research: An Interdisciplinary Survey and Introduction. Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers. Unger, B. (2010), ‘Older and wiser: A special report on Germany’, The Economist, 13 March. Uzzi, B. (1996), ‘The sources and consequences of embeddedness for the economic performance of organizations: The network effect’, American Sociological Review 61 (4): 674-698. Uzzi, B. (1997), ‘Social structure and competition in interfirm networks: The paradox of embeddedness’, Administrative Science Quarterly 42 (1): 35-67. Van der Leun, J. P. (2003), Looking for Loopholes: Processes of Incorporation of ­Illegal Immigrants in the Netherlands. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Van Niekerk, M., J. Rath et al. (2008), Entrepreneurial Diversity in a Unified Europe: Ethnic Minority Entrepreneurship/Migrant Entrepreneurship. Final Report. Brussels: DG Enterprise and Industry, European Commission. Van Tubergen, F. (2005), ‘Self-employment of immigrants: A cross-national study of 17 Western societies’, Social Forces 84 (2): 709-732. Wadhwa, V., A. Saxenian, B. Rissing & G. Gereffi (2007), America’s New Immigrant Entrepreneurs. Waldinger, R. D. (1986), Through the Eye of the Needle: Immigrants and Enterprise in New York’s Garment Trades. New York: New York University Press. Waldinger, R. (1995), ‘The other side of “embeddedness”: A case of the interplay of economy and ethnicity’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 18 (3): 555-580. Waldinger, R. (1996), Still the Promised City? African-Americans and New Immigrants in Postindustrial New York. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Waldinger, R., H. Aldrich & R. Ward (1990), Ethnic Entrepreneurs: Immigrant Business in Industrial Societies. London: Sage. Walton-Roberts, M. & D. Hiebert (1997), ‘Immigration, entrepreneurship, and the family: Indo-Canadian enterprise in the construction industry of Vancouver’, Canadian Journal of Regional Science 20: 119-140. Werbner, P. (2000), ‘What colour “Success”? Distorting value in studies of ethnic entrepreneurship’, in H. Vermeulen & J. Perlmann (eds), Immigrants, Schooling and Social Mobility: Does Culture Make a Difference? Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire & New York: Macmillan & St. Martin’s Press. Wolff, R. & J. Rath (2000), Centen Tellen: Een Inventariserende en Verkennende Studie naar de Financiering van Immigrantenondernemingen. Amsterdam: Het Spinhuis. Yoo, J. K. (1998), Korean Immigrant Entrepreneurs: Networks and Ethnic Resources. New York & London: Garland. Yoon, I. Y. (1997), On My Own: Korean Businesses and Race Relations in America. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.


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Zhou, M. (1992), Chinatown: The Socio-Economic Potential of an Urban Enclave. Philadelphia: Temple University Press. Zukin, S. & P. DiMaggio (1990), Structures of Capital: The Social Organization of the Economy. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Key reading Kloosterman, R. C. & J. Rath (2003), Immigrant Entrepreneurs: Venturing Abroad in the Age of Globalization. Oxford & New York: Berg. Kloosterman, R. C., J. van der Leun & J. Rath (1999), ‘Mixed Embeddedness: Immigrant businesses and informal economic opportunities’, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 23 (2): 253-267. Light, I. & S. J. Gold (2000), Ethnic Economies. San Diego: Academic Press. Rath, J. (2002), Unraveling the Rag Trade: Immigrant Entrepreneurship in Seven World Cities. Oxford & New York: Berg. Rusinovic, K. (2006), Dynamic Entrepreneurship: First- and Second-Generation Immigrant Entrepreneurs in Dutch Cities. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.

About the authors Robert C. Kloosterman is a professor of economic geography and planning at the Amsterdam Institute of Social Science Research (AISSR), University of Amsterdam. He is also an honorary professor at the Bartlett School of Planning, University College London, and Franqui Professor at the University of Hasselt in Belgium. He is currently the programme leader of the AISSR research group Geographies of Globalisations and was director of the Amsterdam Institute of Metropolitan and International Development Studies. Kloosterman was scientific adviser to the InFLOWence project on polycentricity in the Mediterranean (2010-2013) funded under the European Regional Development Fund MED programme. He also advises the municipality of Amsterdam and has advised several Dutch ministries and the OECD. Jan Rath is a professor of urban sociology and associated with the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES) and the Center for Urban Studies at the University of Amsterdam. He is also the European chair of International Metropolis and member of the World Economic Forum. An anthropologist and urban studies specialist, he is the author, editor or co-editor of numerous articles, book chapters, reports and books on the sociology, politics and economics of post-migration processes. These include Immigrant Businesses: The Economic, Political and Social Environment (2000),

Immigrant Entrepreneurship


Unravelling the Rag Trade: Immigrant Entrepreneurship in Seven World Cities (2002), Immigrant Entrepreneurs: Venturing Abroad in the Age of Globalization (2003), Tourism, Ethnic Diversity, and the City (2007), Ethnic Amsterdam (2009), and Selling Ethnic Neighborhoods (2012).

10  Immigrants’ Political Incorporation Irene Bloemraad and Floris Vermeulen

Summary What accounts for the political successes and exclusions of immigrants and their descendants? Does access to the vote automatically translate into political representation and power? If immigrants cannot access electoral politics, what options are open to them? This chapter first discusses the concept of immigrant political incorporation. It then surveys key approaches from both sides of the Atlantic. In the USA, researchers have debated assimilation models, adopted minority politics approaches or incorporated immigrants into general mass behaviour frameworks. In Europe, scholars have debated the relative importance of class versus ethno-racial inequality, compared cross-national political opportunity structures and ideas of nationhood or focused on civic organisations and social capital. Increasingly, cross-Atlantic dialogue is leading to innovative syntheses across these traditions and to new research directions. Keywords: immigrants, political incorporation, civic integration, USA, Europe

Introduction When Barack Obama first won the US presidency in 2008, his election highlighted two contradictory dynamics. On one hand, Obama’s election symbolised the political integration of those with migrant origins. Obama is the son of a Kansas-born mother and a Kenyan-born father. His African roots are planted in migration, rather than the legacy of US slavery. On the other hand, some 21.6 million foreign-born US residents could not participate in this historic election. These residents – who live, work and pay taxes in the USA – lacked US citizenship, which is a requirement for voting. Their lack of voice stands in contrast to Obama’s political success, and is also ironic in a country that fought a revolutionary war on the idea of ‘no taxation without representation’.


Irene Bloemraad and Floris Vermeulen

Europe has its own immigrant-origin political success stories, but they are seldom celebrated in a similar way to Obama’s. Former French president Nicholas Sarkozy is the son of Hungarian immigrants, but Sarkozy’s immigrant roots were downplayed given the national discourse on being French, first and foremost. Immigrant-origin politicians are an anomaly in France. No one of North African origin, which is the largest minority group in France, sat in the National Assembly in 2008. Surprisingly, in the Netherlands – a country that has largely turned its back on multiculturalism over the past decade – a Muslim immigrant was named mayor of the country’s second largest city, Rotterdam, in 2009. Ahmed Aboutaleb’s position is all the more remarkable because residents of Rotterdam strongly supported Pim Fortuyn’s political movement against Muslim immigrants in 2002. What accounts for the political successes and exclusions of immigrants and their descendants? Why do immigrants in some countries have easy access to citizenship and political rights, while those in other places confront tightly guarded doors to political membership? Does access to the vote translate naturally into political representation and power? If immigrants cannot access politics through electoral means, what options are open to them? This chapter surveys some of the most prominent approaches to studying and understanding immigrants’ political incorporation. It first discusses the conceptualisation of political incorporation, and then surveys key approaches to the topic, first from the US perspective and then in the European context. Scholars on both sides of the Atlantic are increasingly synthesising ‘American’ and ‘European’ approaches to immigrant political incorporation (e.g., Lafleur & Martiniello 2009; Hochschild & Mollenkopf 2009), so students of this topic need a firm grounding in both traditions. The chapter ends by speculating on emerging themes for future research.

Definitions: What is immigrant political incorporation? Second generation

Our focus is on foreign-born immigrants and their children, commonly called the ‘second generation’.1 Yet in some ways, the two groups are quite distinct: immigrants have often been socialised in a different political context than that of the settlement country. After they migrate, they must build a new way of life in a foreign country, including learning a new, sometimes very different political system. Often their legal status prevents


We do not include the third or later generations. These groups are more properly considered native-born minority groups. Models of minority political integration likely differ from models of immigrant integration.

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them from accessing the political system directly through elections, at least in the early years of settlement. In contrast, the native-born children of immigrants gain automatic citizenship in countries such as Canada and the USA, regardless of their parents’ legal status. Even in Europe – where citizenship at birth, when given, is tied to parents’ legal status or length of residence (Vink & De Groot 2010) – children usually have easier access to citizenship than their migrant parents. The second generation’s familiarity with the country of residence, especially through instruction in local schools and knowledge of the majority language, also means that they face fewer barriers to political participation than their foreign-born parents. Nevertheless, they are often perceived, and sometimes may see themselves, as closer to their immigrant parents in their political interests and activities than to other native-born citizens. We thus include them in discussions of immigrant political incorporation. When it comes to ‘political incorporation’, researchers offer such a range of definitions that Minnite (2009: 49) characterises the topic a ‘conceptual muddle’. Scholars differ on whether to view political incorporation as a process or as achievement of specific endpoints (e.g., attaining citizenship, voting or joining a civic association). They debate whether immigrants should be compared to the ‘average’ native-born citizen, to a particular native-born minority group, to people with the same class status, or whether they should be held to an entirely different standard. Indeed, they ask whether political engagement is even desirable, or rational, given all of the other challenges that migrants face. Researchers also use various units of analysis, sometimes studying immigrants’ individual or group attitudes and behaviours, while other times examining how nation-states or political parties behave towards immigrants. Even when scholars concentrate on immigrant actors, some suggest that incorporation has occurred only when individual immigrants have become indistinguishable from other political participants – a process that Minnite (2009) terms political absorption and Bloemraad (2007) political assimilation. Others treat immigrants as groups, usually delineated by national origin, that integrate into a political system as a collective unit. For the purposes of this chapter, we build on Bloemraad’s (2006: 6-7) definition of political incorporation as ‘the process of becoming a part of mainstream political debates, practices and decision-making’, without privileging an individual assimilation or group-based incorporation view.2


Given space limitations and our focus on immigrants’ political and civic engagement, we do not consider, in this chapter, the voluminous European literature on far-right, anti-immigrant parties or the growing US scholarship on anti-immigrant legislation.


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Perspectives on immigrant incorporation in the USA US scholars have not studied immigrant political incorporation in a sustained way. Many writers in the first half of the twentieth century assumed that political and civic integration was part of a more general process of immigrant assimilation. Since the 1960s, students of politics have debated the relative merits of electoral or contentious strategies of political engagement. Much of research along these lines has dealt uneasily (or not at all) with the question of whether immigrant political integration is unique or whether it can be subsumed under a broader discussion of racial minority politics. Assimilation and Americanisation Assimilation


Most classic models of immigrant integration in the USA rest on studies of the millions of Europeans who migrated to American cities between 1880 and 1924. This scholarship viewed immigrant adaptation as a linear process, with integration occurring through a progression of steps (e.g., Park & Burgess 1969 [1921]; Warner & Srole 1945; Gordon 1964). Scholars debated the details of the process, but they believed that with time and generational succession, immigrants and their descendants would give up their distinctive languages, norms, identities and practices to become part of an American mainstream, a process they termed ‘assimilation’. Because they were primarily interested in cultural assimilation, residential dispersion and social integration, politics – as a measure of integration or as a way for immigrants to solve problems – received comparatively little attention. In public discussions, however, immigrants’ political activities were debated. The speed with which different European groups applied for US citizenship served as a measure of whether ‘new’ immigrants from Southern and Eastern Europe were harder to assimilate than ‘old’ Northern and Western Europeans. Some commentators worried that migrants from nondemocratic European countries would remain outside the political system because they lacked democratic values or, worse, that immigrants’ undemocratic orientations might infect the US system. Paradoxically, other observers worried about immigrants’ excessive political participation. Immigrants’ support for political parties in some US cities, according to these critics, was based on patronage and narrow, personal interests rather than an understanding of the greater public good.3 In almost all cases, the overriding concern was to ‘Americanise’ the newcomer: to make him (then


On immigrants and urban political machine politics in this historic period, see Erie (1988) and Trounstine (2008).

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her, once women gained the vote) indistinguishable from the native-born (white) American. Current public debates in Europe and North America about non-European migrants, particularly Muslims, sometimes sound very similar to these old debates. Minority politics: Urban politics and social movements An assimilation approach also informed scholarship in the early decades after the Second World War. Seminal work by Robert Dahl (1961) describes urban political parties’ practice of running one or two ‘ethnic’ candidates in elections to secure the ‘ethnic vote’ of Italian, Irish or other immigrantorigin communities. Dahl believed, however, that as each new generation moved from being working class to middle class, ethnic politics would diminish as immigrants and their descendants assimilated into US pluralist politics. This view was soon challenged by the observation that ethnicity continued to be salient in urban politics, especially in the north-east USA. The study of ethnicity then supplanted attention to immigrant political integration because the number and proportion of immigrants living in the USA fell dramatically and because the continued relevance of ethnicity challenged the assimilation model.4 Studying New York City, Glazer and Monyihan (1963) argued that a collective ethnic consciousness facilitated Irish Americans’ political success, while Katznelson (1981) underscored the difference between New Yorkers’ workplace activism around labor issues and their ethnic orientation to local politics of place and community. Ethnicity, now several generations removed from the immigrant experience, served as a political resource, especially in voting and election to office. Such a view challenges incorporation models in some European countries, such as France, where many look suspiciously at the use of ethnic labels and identity appeals in politics. Challenges to the assimilation model also came from another direction. The model failed to deal adequately with the second-class citizenship and political disenfranchisement of racial minorities, especially African Americans. Many early scholars used the same models to compare European-origin groups and Puerto Ricans and African Americans. However, the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s, and the urban protests that followed, challenged this paradigm. The political integration of racial minorities appeared to be quite different from that of European-origin Americans, as racial minorities experienced continuing discrimination while ‘white ethnics’ were largely incorporated into


By the 1960s, after four decades of restrictive immigration laws, only five per cent of US residents were foreign-born.

Ethnic and urban politics

Civil Rights Movement


Social movements

Undocumented migrants

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politics. Rodney Hero has called this ‘two-tiered’ pluralism, a perspective that some scholars are applying to the contemporary French case (Tiberj & S­ imon 2010). In response to the activism of the 1960s, scholars developed new models of social movement mobilisation that were less focused on electoral politics. This approach suggests that civil disobedience, civil society mobilisation and contentious street-based action offer a better means for political outsiders to challenge elite insiders than voting and traditional representation (e.g., McAdam 1982; Piven & Cloward 1977). Given the modest numbers of immigrants in the USA at this time, alongside evidence of the electoral incorporation of European-origin Americans, social movement approaches were largely focused on racial minorities and not extended to the study of immigrant political integration. As we discuss below, however, such models were quite influential among European migration scholars. Today, US scholars continue to debate the relevance of an electoral or social movements approach to political incorporation. An influential study of cities in the San Francisco area by Browning, Marshall and Tabb (1984) argues that protest politics are inadequate to explain the political empowerment of African Americans and Latinos and that electoral coalitions better advance minority interests. More recent studies contend that even if contemporary political parties do not incorporate immigrants and ethnic minorities as fully as in earlier periods, urban politics remains a battleground for votes and coalition forging (Jones-Correa 1998; Mollenkopf & Sonenshein 2009). At the same time, with the growing salience of undocumented migration – between 11 and 12 million people lacked legal residence in 2012 – there is increasing evidence of social movement mobilisation. Immigrants and their supporters protest efforts to detain, deny benefits and take rights away from unauthorised residents (Voss & Bloemraad 2011). This was dramatically shown in first five months of 2006, when an estimated 3.7 to 5 million people took to the streets across 160 US cities to demonstrate for immigrants’ rights (Bada, Fox & Selee 2006; Bloemraad, Voss & Lee 2011). Mass politics and the behavioural tradition Despite more attention to immigrant social movements, the bulk of contemporary US scholarship has centred on mass politics and political behaviour (DeSipio 2001; Bloemraad, Voss & Lee 2011). At an aggregate level, researchers find that immigrants, compared to the general US population, are less engaged in formal politics and civic affairs (Citrin & Highton 2002; Ramakrishnan 2005). Using statistical analyses and large-scale surveys, researchers examine factors (e.g., education, age and gender) that affect participation in formal politics, such as voting, campaigning and donating

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money, and measure civic involvement based on, for example, membership in community groups and volunteering (Wong 2006; Sundeen, Garcia & Raskoff 2009). The aim of these studies is to explain individual behaviour: who participates, and under what conditions? Implicit in much of the literature is the assumption that immigrants behave in much the same way, and for the same reasons, as native-born citizens: they participate when they are properly motivated to do so; they participate when they have the means to do so; and they participate when they are mobilised to do so by political and non-political actors and institutions. In some cases, these assumptions seem justified. For example, the participation gap between Latino immigrants and native-born white Americans largely disappears after controlling for Latinos’ younger age, greater non-citizenship status, lower level of schooling and more modest income. Such controls do not, however, explain Asian immigrants’ lower participation. This discrepancy leads some scholars to conclude that immigrant incorporation models cannot blindly replicate models derived from the general US population (Cho 1999; Ramakrishnan 2005). Statistical studies in the behavioural tradition are facilitated in the US context by the long history of data collection on ethnic, racial and immigrant origins. New and better statistical data in Europe have now led researchers here to increasingly engage in mass politics studies too (De Rooij 2012).

Individual political behaviour

Perspectives on immigrant incorporation in Europe Unlike US-based researchers, who usually presume that immigrants will and should become integrated into the electoral system, scholars of immigrant political incorporation in Europe long focused on immigrants’ lack of participation. Immigrant workers, especially the first wave of postSecond World War migrants, were considered apolitical. That assessment had a degree of validity, given the substantial gap measured between immigrant and native-born participation (Martiniello 2005). Immigrants’ lack of participation – perhaps because many initially saw their stay as temporary – was reinforced by government policy and the actions of local political actors. Early migrants received limited or no political rights, and in various European countries restrictive citizenship regulations affected not only foreign-born migrants, but also their native-born children and grandchildren (Odmalm 2005). In a similar way, labour unions, which were central to politics in many European states, often offered a lukewarm welcome, at best. The Swedish case is a good example of these dynamics. In theory, the Swedish political model, embracing both multicultural and corporatist practices, should provide ample opportunities for immigrants’ political

Temporary labour migrants


Immigrant organisations

Local voting rights

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incorporation. However, in practice, immigrant interests and representation have been marginalised within Sweden’s class-based corporatist system (Bäck & Soininen 1998; Dahlstedt & Hertzberg 2007). Soininen (1999), for example, concludes that formal equality of membership in the Swedish system does not, in itself, solve problems of social and economic marginalisation or provide power and participation in key political institutions. The presumption of immigrants’ political apathy is also challenged by immigrants’ engagement in a variety of political and civic acts (Hargreaves & Wihtol de Wenden 1993; Schönwälder 2009). Immigrants have participated in workplace councils and in labour activism, working to open up unions to immigrants’ interests in Sweden, Germany, France and the Netherlands (Penninx & Roosblad 2000). Immigrants have also organised themselves in ethnic minority and immigrant bodies, as well as through the ethnic press. Various scholars underscore the importance of immigrant organisations, as collective actors, in the process of political incorporation (Schmitter 1980; Thränhardt 1989; Schrover & Vermeulen 2005). These organisations can engage in demonstrations and protest activities, and they have been used by government officials to gather information and build communication channels to ameliorate intergroup relations between immigrants and majority residents. Thus, immigrant participation is sometimes extensive outside of formal electoral politics. Old descriptions of immigrants’ political apathy might therefore be exaggerated, and the past provides little purchase on the future, given the rise of a European-born second generation and more generous citizenship rules and expansive political rights. Even electoral politics appears to be opening up. While access to citizenship remains difficult in some countries (Vink & De Groot 2010), a growing number immigrant-origin residents do hold citizenship and full voting rights – a benefit that some have exercised (Messina 2007). A number of European nations also provide local voting rights to non-citizens who meet residency requirements.5 Anwar (2001) argued, more than a decade ago, that the level of political awareness among immigrants and minorities had clearly increased since the early 1980s. This continues to the present, as is seen in the rising number of immigrantorigin politicians running for, and winning, office. In academic circles, discussions of political incorporation in Europe loosely revolve around three questions. The first centres on whether the political behaviour of immigrants is primarily influenced by their class background, their ethnic background or their race. The second examines and theorises the influence of receiving countries’ political and cultural


For a list of these countries and rules of political integration, see the Migrant Integration Policy Index (MIPEX) overview of political participation (www.

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structures on immigrants’ incorporation. The third, in part a reaction to the prevalence of the national models approach, looks to explanatory factors at the level of individuals and migrant groups. These debates have some overlap with US scholarship, but as outlined below, they also depart from the US literature in important ways. Class, race or ethnicity? Like US researchers, scholars in Europe wondered early on whether immigrants’ political incorporation required new analytical models, or whether their actions and position in the political system could be folded into existing paradigms. Unlike US scholarship, a much more substantial part of the European debate centred on the class position of new migrants. The Marxist tradition was widespread in the academic community of the 1970s, the period in which immigrants’ presence in Western Europe became more visible. Most immigrants were guest workers, recruited as cheap, unskilled labourers, or they were post-colonial immigrants. That latter group was more diverse and more highly-skilled than the guest workers, but many post-colonial migrants also ended up in low-paid and low-skilled work. In one of the first studies of immigration and its political consequences, Castles and Kosack (1973) argued that immigrants settled in capitalist states where class oppression is the norm. Thus, immigrant political incorporation was best understood as part of class struggle. Within this Marxist tradition, scholars took two different approaches to the question of how race and ethnic identity play into politics (Rex 1994). One approach contended that racist ideologies in official discourses and state policy furthered class oppression by keeping immigrants in inferior social, economic and political positions. When immigrants’ political actions targeted racism, these acts were understood as a specific form of class struggle. In contrast, the second line of reasoning viewed multicultural policies and states’ attention to race and ethnic identities as a form of control and false consciousness. It was argued that such policies serve to co-opt immigrant leaders, who then controlled their communities (Rath 1988). Scholars in this tradition sought to uncover these false identities and direct attention back to class position and oppression. The tension between class and other collective identities is a recurring theme. Early on, Miles and Phizacklea (1977, 1984) identified three political behaviour models. The primary one is the class unity process model, which explains immigrants’ political behaviour by their working-class position in the British capitalist state. Immigrants’ interests are consequently promoted by the traditional political institutions of the working class, the Labour Party and the labour unions (Rath 1988; Hargreaves & Wihtol de Wenden 1993). However, two other models, the black unity model and the ethnic organisation process model, acknowledge the specific position of immigrants

Post-colonial migration

Class oppression


Combining class and ethnicity

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and the common political interests that stem from them being newcomers with little formal or informal access to the political and social system. Studies of other European countries find that different combinations of class, ethnicity and race explain variation in the political participation of particular immigrant groups in different contexts (Rath 1983, 1988; Tillie 1998). For example, in France, Tiberj and Simon (2010) have advanced the ‘two-tiered pluralism’ perspective to understand why racial minority status, rather than class, better explains leftist orientations among people of immigrant and Antillean origins. Studying Denmark, Togeby (1999) argues that immigrants’ high political mobilisation stems in part from group interests that are sustained by ethnic organisations and strong social networks among co-ethnics. Today, many scholars conclude that the political participation of immigrants cannot be analysed by focusing only on their marginalised economic positions and the racist ideologies that kept them there. As LaytonHenry (1988) summarised the situation, while the economic systems of European countries may have been exploitive, Europe’s advanced welfare systems, the continent’s liberal and democratic traditions, and its legal systems have provided resources for immigrants to protect their interests and improve their position. In fact, immigrants have used these resources to pursue strategies that were in some cases markedly different from the native working class. Citizenship, national models and political opportunity structures

Citizenship regimes and national models

In contemporary North America, immigrants’ acquisition of citizenship is relatively easy, and children born to immigrant parents receive automatic birthright citizenship. Therefore, the legal and ideological structures of citizenship and national membership have not been a prominent part of the literature on immigrants’ incorporation in the USA and Canada.6 In Europe, however, conceptions of citizenship and nationhood vary significantly between countries, producing a voluminous scholarship on how national models – rather than the characteristics of immigrants – affect political inclusion. Scholars of European immigration frequently distinguished between ‘ethnic’ and ‘civic’ approaches to citizenship and national belonging. Brubaker’s Citizenship and Nationhood (1992) epitomises this approach. He juxtaposes the French civic tradition, stressing jus soli citizenship – allowing those born on French soil easy access to citizenship – with the ethnonational German tradition, jus sanguinis citizenship, which restricts na-


Exceptions to this are extensive legal studies and historical work on former race-based exclusions to citizenship and political rights.

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tional membership to those of German blood descent. Citizenship based on common descent excludes immigrants and their children from mainstream civic and political life, while citizenship based on political attachments is more open to integrating immigrants (Brubaker 1992; Koopmans et al. 2005). Subsequent research has added important nuances and greater sophistication to the simple dichotomous membership model by considering the electoral and party systems of different countries and the role of group rights and pluralist ideologies in shaping immigrants’ participation (Bousetta 2000; Howard 2009; Ireland 1994; Koopmans, et al. 2005; Odmalm 2005). For example, Vermeulen and Berger conclude that certain electoral systems and multicultural policies increase immigrants’ civic and political activities (Vermeulen 2006; Vermeulen & Berger 2008). In some cases, researchers use the language of the political opportunity structures within which immigrants mobilise, rather than national models. Koopmans and colleagues (2005), for example, find that in places with a strong ethnic perception of citizenship, immigrants and mainstream actors formulate more political claims based on ethnic background. Togeby (1999, 2008) shows that even among political systems that are rather similar, such as those of Denmark, Sweden and Norway, small differences in the preferential voting system lead to significant differences in immigrants’ participation and ability to elect minorities to office. The upshot of these studies is that national models of citizenship and integration, and specific features of the political opportunity structure, channel and constrain immigrants’ political behaviour at both the national and the local levels. These effects might be so strong as to render particular characteristics of the immigrant group less important. In studying Switzerland and France, Ireland (1994: 10, 245-247) concludes that the level and type of political participation is more similar among different immigrants groups within the same country than compared to compatriots living in another country. These approaches do, however, carry a danger of excessive determinism and simplification. For example, a long historical tradition of nationbuilding cannot be adequately captured in simple categories like ‘civic’ or ‘ethnic’. Furthermore, models are often articulated based on official state discourses, while things may work very differently at the practical level of daily life. The German case illustrates this. Despite strict and exclusionist German citizenship laws, Germany absorbed many more immigrants in the 1990s than any other European country (Bade 2000; Messina 2007). Immigrants were incorporated into German society at the local level early on, and while civic and political incorporation at the national level has been slow, immigrants were elected to important positions in German factories with the support of unions and German co-workers (Lucassen 2005). Scholars must avoid taking official models as absolute or rigidly determinative (Bader 2007).

Political opportunity structures

Historical or structural determinism


Irene Bloemraad and Floris Vermeulen

Collective resources: Civic organisations and social capital

Group-level resources and social capital

Macro-level frameworks, like national models and political opportunity structure approaches, have been a dominant feature of European scholarship since the 1990s. But during the first decade of the twenty-first century, researchers focused increasingly on intergroup variation in political integration. It has long been clear, in Europe and North America, that individual resources and skills matter in explaining people’s level and form of political action, although this research tradition is more prominent in the US context. Thus, some intergroup differences in political incorporation might stem from differences in individual-level resources or characteristics. For example, if a particular immigrant group includes more highlyskilled individuals than other groups, this would help to explain why that group has, overall, higher voter turnout, citizenship acquisition or engagement in public demonstrations. Differences might also stem from group-level resources and ties between individuals, as articulated by a social capital framework. Thus Fennema and Tillie (1999, 2001) highlight the role of personal networks in linking together immigrant organisations through interlocking directorates. These interlocking directorates create permanent communication channels between organisations, which then allow for the development of a strong civic community held together by civic norms, political trust, political engagement and the potential for mobilisation. Studying the three largest immigrant groups in Amsterdam, Fennema and Tillie (ibid.) argue that Turkish immigrants display the highest levels of political trust and political participation because they have the highest organisational density and their organisations are connected by a dense network of linked board members.7 The civic community model of Fennema and Tillie, which builds on the US neo-Tocquevillian approach to social capital elaborated by Putnam (2000), has led to extensive research in other European cities. Results of these studies have been mixed. The political participation of individual immigrants does seem to depend on involvement in ethnic and crossethnic organisations (Berger, Galonska & Koopmans 2004; Jacobs, Phalet & Swyngedouw 2004; Togeby 2004; Tillie 2004; Eggert & Guigni 2010), but immigrant groups with higher organisational density (measured as the number of organisations per community member) are not necessarily the ones that participate most or are most incorporated. In Brussels, for instance, Turkish immigrants display a high association membership 7

Fennema and Tillie (2001) stress that a dense horizontal civic network does not have to be efficient, it just enhances trust, which leads to higher rates of participation, especially more routine or formal engagement. A horizontal civic network might be less efficient than a hierarchical one for rapid collective action mobilisation (Vermeulen & Berger 2008).

Immigrants’ Political Incorporation


level, but Moroccans are more politically involved. This difference is explained by Moroccans’ greater language proficiency in French, an important element enhancing political involvement in Brussels (Jacobs, Phalet & Swyngedouw 2004). Reprising a theme from the national models approach, the political context – at the country or city level – seems to be a major explanatory factor (Vermeulen & Berger 2008). There is also little evidence that civic networks promote trust, which in turn fosters political integration. This finding is in line with general studies on civic engagement and political participation (Van der Meer & Van Ingen 2009). Nevertheless, the civic community model has stimulated important research by bringing the organisational aspect of immigrant integration into the spotlight. Immigrant groups also differ based on the political situation in the country of origin and immigrants’ ties to their homeland. Transnationalism, understood broadly as the diverse ties that link individual immigrants and migrant groups to their community of origin and their community of residence, challenges an exclusive focus on integration contexts. Experiences in the home country, and continued ties to the homeland, can have a significant effect on the civic and political behaviour of immigrants (Oestergaard-Nielsen 2003; Mügge 2011). Some groups from countries with a vibrant civil society and a dynamic political system, such as Turkey, show higher levels of political transnationalism than other groups. Political and religious institutions in the country of origin can also function as headquarters for affiliated immigrant organisations in Western Europe (Oestergaard-Nielsen 2003). Scholars (and public commentators) in Europe and the USA are divided on the utility and effect of transnational ties. In some cases, transnationalism is discussed as a zero-sum situation: time, money and political energy targeting the country of origin distracts from participation in the host society and delays political integration. Others regard transnationalism as useful for domestic political integration: it builds skills, connections and a sense of political efficacy, while transnational activities also provide opportunities for immigrants to get involved and mobilised in domestic politics and civic affairs (Guarnizo, Portes & Haller 2003). The relative importance of transnational ties, and their effect on political integration, likely depends on the interaction between host and home country contexts. Recently the concept of ‘political transnationalism’ emerged to describe activities such as citizens being members of associations active in two different countries, political parties running campaigns across borders and the lobbying of national authorities of one country in order to influence its foreign policy toward the community’s country of origin (Lafleur & Martiniello 2009). This is clearly an area meriting further research.



Irene Bloemraad and Floris Vermeulen

Conversations across the Atlantic: Future directions and emerging themes

Exclusion from politics

Comparative research

Much of the US research on immigrant political incorporation over the past three decades has lumped immigrants into one of the broad ethno-racial categories commonly employed in the USA: whites, African Americans, Latinos or Asian Americans. This practice ignores distinctions between foreign-born and native-born residents and the possibility that immigrant political inclusion might follow a distinct dynamic, a problem increasingly highlighted by US-based scholars (De Graauw 2008; Jones-Correa 2005; Minnite 2009; Ramakrishnan & Bloemraad 2008). Many immigrants in the USA do not hold citizenship and are thus formally barred from voting. Cultural and linguistic divides make accessing information about electoral campaigns difficult, while the diversity of today’s immigrants renders it difficult for them to create and mobilise a politically-oriented collective identity – as African Americans have (Lee 2008). The transnational activities and orientations of some immigrants might also mesh imperfectly with strong local orientations towards political activism. In response, some US scholars are adopting adaptations of a European social movements approach to immigrant political integration (Voss & Bloemraad 2011). Historically, an electoral or behaviour approach to political incorporation made sense since, in theory, the door to formal politics stood ajar: many immigrants were naturalised, and their US-born children acquired citizenship automatically. However, given the substantial undocumented population and high levels of non-citizenship among legal residents, the situation in the USA is increasingly one of exclusion from formal politics. A social movements approach centred on political ‘outsiders’ is thus an important path for future theorising in the US ­context. In a similar way, while attention to national contexts has been a central theme in European scholarship, cross-national comparisons have been largely absent from the North American literature. It has been difficult, therefore, to evaluate whether models developed in the USA have application elsewhere, or whether they are a function of the US political, social and economic system. For example, Putnam (2007) suggests that evidence linking greater ethno-racial diversity to lower levels of social capital in the USA might have general application to other immigrantreceiving nations. This conclusion has been challenged, however, by researchers who find little evidence of a negative ‘diversity effect’ in European countries (Gesthuizen, Van der Meer & Scheepers 2009) or who argue that such effects are mediated by a country’s level of economic inequality and its multiculturalism policies (Kesler & Bloemraad 2010). Comparing immigrants’ political incorporation in the USA and Canada, Bloemraad (2006) argues that despite the many similarities between these two North

Immigrants’ Political Incorporation


American countries, relatively small differences in policies regarding integration and multiculturalism produce large effects on citizenship, organisational capacity and election to office. More comparative projects are needed. These would help to answer, for example, the question of whether the ‘traditional’ countries of immigration, such as the USA, Canada and Australia, provide an easier and faster path to political incorporation than European countries. Scholars of immigrant incorporation in the USA also increasingly study immigrant organisations, though theoretical traditions and data difficulties have resulted in less attention to social capital and interlocking directorships. In the USA, the study of immigrant organisations builds on a longstanding focus on civic engagement, which has been associated with American democracy at least since Alexis de Tocqueville’s nineteenth-century observations of US society. Organisations, in this view, serve as a place to learn civic and political skills, a site to articulate political interests and a place to offer services that government does not provide (Ramakrishnan & Bloemraad 2008). Scholars have examined a variety of roles played by immigrant organisations: promoting civic and political incorporation (Bloemraad 2006; Saito 1998; Wong 2006); helping immigrants fight labour law violations (Gleeson 2008); expressing civic identities through cultural, religious and other activities (Reed-Danahay & Brettell 2008); advocating for public policies that benefit immigrants (De Graauw 2008); and providing critical social services to newcomers, thus linking providers and recipients to political parties and legislative bodies (Cordero-Guzmán 2005; Marwell 2007). Because political power in a democracy is almost always predicated on collective voice and action, the growing scholarship on immigrant organisations can be seen as an important avenue for future research, one which is equally relevant to citizen and non-citizen migrants in the USA and in Europe (Schrover & Vermeulen 2005). We also expect more European research to focus on explaining variation in the political incorporation of different immigrant communities and sub-groups within those communities. In Europe, older Marxist class orientations and a perception that ethno-racial labels are illegitimate have limited group-based comparisons. Data constraints too have hindered European researchers’ ability to study aggregate political behaviours at the individual level, including the attitudes and actions of the second generation, which is a longstanding topic in the USA. This situation is now changing, with more statistical studies and research available on sub-groups (e.g., Maxwell 2010; Morales & Giugni 2011). For instance, in her study of immigrant-origin youths in Belgium, Quintelier (2009) finds that these youths do not share the low levels of political participation of their immigrant parents, but their political participation is influenced by gender, socioeconomic situation, mother tongue and sense of group identity.

Civic engagement



Bureaucratic inclusion

Irene Bloemraad and Floris Vermeulen

A final area of new scholarship in the USA and in Europe centres on the concept of bureaucratic inclusion, that is, the actions taken by public employees to accommodate immigrants into government services and decision-making (De Graauw 2008; Lewis & Ramakrishnan 2007; JonesCorrea 2008; Marrow 2009). Public employees, especially those in cities and neighbourhoods with high concentrations of immigrants, interact with immigrants in their day-to-day work, and officials may take a pragmatic approach to accommodating immigrants by stretching, bending or even breaking rules that exclude migrants (Marrow 2009). A parallel literature is developing in Europe focusing on immigrants’ incorporation into cities and notions of urban citizenship (see Caponio & Bockert 2010; Vermeulen & Plaggenborg 2009). Nevertheless, officials’ ability to practice bureaucratic inclusion remains constrained by law, suggesting that future research cannot ignore the legislative processes, at all levels of government, that delineate who can access what. The reality, and constraints, of bureaucratic integration forces scholars of immigrant political incorporation to develop dynamic models to explain how electoral politics, party competition and legislative agendasetting interact with non-political civic engagement and bureaucratic accommodation. Future students of immigrant political incorporation will need to develop such interactive, complex accounts as this field of research matures.

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Eggert, Nina & Marco Giugni (2010), ‘Does associational involvement spur political integration? Political interest and participation of three immigrant groups in Zurich’, Swiss Political Science Review 16 (2): 175-210. Erie, Steven P. (1988), Rainbow’s End: Irish-Americans and the Dilemmas of Urban Machine Politics, 1840-1985. Berkeley: University of California Press. Fennema, M. & J. Tillie (1999), ‘Political participation and political trust in Amsterdam: Civic communities and ethnic networks’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 25 (4): 703-726. Fennema, Meindert & Jean Tillie (2001), ‘Civic community, political participation and political trust of ethnic groups’, Connections 24 (1): 26-41. Gesthuizen, M., T. van der Meer & P. Scheepers (2009), ‘Ethnic diversity and social capital in Europe: Tests of Putnam’s thesis in European countries’, Scandinavian Political Studies 32 (2): 121-142. Glazer, Nathan & Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1963), Beyond the Melting Pot. Cambridge: MIT Press. Gleeson, Shannon. 2008. ‘Organizing for Latino immigrant labor rights in two US cities: The case of San Jose and Houston’, in S. K. Ramakrishnan & I. Bloemraad (eds), Civic Hopes and Political Realities: Immigrants, Community Organizations, and Political Engagement. New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 107-133. Gordon, Milton M. (1964), Assimilation in American Life: The Role of Race, Religion and National Origins. New York: Oxford University Press. Guarnizo, L. E., A. Portes & W. Haller (2003), ‘Assimilation and transnationalism: Determinants of transnational political action among contemporary migrants’, American Journal of Sociology 108: 1211-1148. Hargreaves, Alec & Catherine Wihtol de Wenden (1993), ‘The political participation of ethnic minorities in Europe: A framework of analysis’, New Community 20 (1): 1-8. Hochschild, J. & J. Mollenkopf (eds) (2009), Bringing Outsiders In: Transatlantic Perspectives on Immigrant Political Incorporation. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Howard, M. M. (2009), The Politics of Citizenship in Europe. New York: Cambridge University Press. Ireland, Patrick R. (1994), The Policy Challenge of Ethnic Diversity: Immigrant Politics in France and Switzerland. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Jacobs, Dirk, Karen Phalet & Marc Swyngedouw (2004), ‘Associational membership and political involvement among ethnic minority groups in Brussels’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 30: 543-559. Jones-Correa, Michael (1998), Between Two Nations: The Political Predicament of Latinos in New York City. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Jones-Correa, Michael (2005), ‘Bringing outsiders in: Questions of immigrant incorporation’, in C. Wolbrecht & R. Hero (eds), The Politics of Democratic Inclusion. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 75-101. Jones-Correa, Michael (2008), ‘The bureaucratic incorporation of immigrants in suburbia: The role of bureaucratic norms in education’, in Doug Massey (ed.),

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New Faces in New Places: The Changing Geography of American Immigration. New York: Russell Sage Foundation Press, 308-310. Katznelson, Ira (1981), City Trenches: Urban Politics and the Patterning of Class in the United States. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Kesler, Christel & Irene Bloemraad (2010), ‘Does immigration erode social capital? The conditional effects of immigration-generated diversity on trust, membership and participation across 19 countries, 1981-2000’, Canadian Journal of Political Science 43 (2): 319-347. Koopmans, Ruud, Paul Statham, Marco Giugni & Florence Passy (2005), Contested Citizenship: Immigration and Cultural Diversity in Europe. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Lafleur, Jean-Michel & Marco Martiniello (eds) (2009), The Transnational Political Participation of Immigrants. A Transatlantic Perspective. London: Routledge. Layton-Henry, Z. (1988), ‘The political challenge of migration for West European states’, European Journal of Political Research 16: 587-595. Lee, Taeku (2008), ‘Race, immigration, and the identity-to-politics link’, Annual Review of Political Science 11: 457-478. Lewis, Paul & S. Karthick Ramakrishnan (2007), ‘Police practices in immigrantdestination cities: Political control or bureaucratic professionalism?’ Urban Affairs Review 42 (6): 874-900. Lucassen, L. (2005), The Immigrant Threat: The Integration of Old and New Migrants in Western Europe since 1850. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Martiniello, Marco (2005), ‘Political participation, mobilisation, and representation of immigrants and their offspring in Europe’, in Migration and Citizenship: Legal Status, Rights, and Political Participation, State of the Art Report for the IMISCOE Cluster B3. 2005. IMISCOE, University of Amsterdam. Marrow, Helen B. (2009), ‘Immigrant bureaucratic incorporation: The dual roles of professional missions and government policies’, American Sociological Review 74 (5): 756-776. Marwell, Nicole P. (2007), Bargaining for Brooklyn: Community Organizations in the Entrepreneurial City. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Maxwell, Rahsaan (2010), ‘Political participation in France among non-Europeanorigin migrants: Segregation or integration?’ Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36 (3): 425-443. McAdam, Doug (1982), Political Process and the Development of Black Insurgency, 1930-1970. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Messina, Anthony A. (2007), The Logics and Politics of Post-WWII Migration to Western Europe. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Miles, R. & A. Phizacklea (1977), ‘Class, race, ethnicity and political action’, Political Studies 25: 491-507. Miles, R. & A. Phizacklea (1984), White Man’s Country: Racism in British Politics. London: Pluto Press. Minnite, Lorraine (2009), ‘Lost in translation? A critical reappraisal of the concept of immigrant political incorporation’, in Jennifer L. Hochschild & John H. Mol-


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lenkopf (eds), Bringing Outsiders In: Transatlantic Perspectives on Immigrant Political Incorporation. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Mollenkopf, John H. & Raphael Sonenshein (2009), ‘The new urban politics of integration: A view from the gateway cities’, in Jennifer L. Hochschild & John H. Mollenkopf (eds), Bringing Outsiders In: Transatlantic Perspectives on Immigrant Political Incorporation. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Morales, L. & M. Giugni (eds) (2011), Social Capital, Political Participation and Migration in Europe: Making Multicultural Democracy Work. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Mügge, L. (2011). Beyond Dutch Borders: Transnational Politics among Colonial Migrants, Guest Workers and the Second Generation. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Odmalm, P. (2005), Migration Policies and Political Participation: Inclusion or Intrusion in Western Europe? Houndmills & Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Østergaard-Nielsen, Eva (2003), Transnational Politics: Turks and Kurds in Germany. London: Routledge. Park, Robert E. & Ernest W. Burgess (1969 [1921]), Introduction to the Science of Sociology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Penninx, Rinus & Judith Roosblad (eds) (2000), Trade Unions, Immigration, and Immigrants in Europe, 1960-1993: A Comparative Study of the Actions of Trade Unions in Seven West European Countries. Oxford: Berghahn. Piven, Frances Fox & Richard Cloward (1977), Poor People’s Movements. New York: Pantheon. Putnam, Robert D. (2000), Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community. New York: Simon & Schuster. Putnam, Robert D. (2007), ‘E pluribus unum: Diversity and community in the twenty-first century. The 2006 Johan Skytte Prize Lecture’, Scandinavian Political Studies 30: 137-174. Quintelier, Ellen (2009), ‘The political participation of immigrant youth in Belgium’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 35 (6): 919-937. Ramakrishnan, S. Karthick (2005), Democracy in Immigrant America: Changing Demographics and Political Participation. Stanford: Stanford University Press. Ramakrishnan, S. Karthick & Irene Bloemraad (2008), Civic Hopes and Political Realities: Immigrants, Community Organizations, and Political Engagement. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Rath, J. (1983), ‘Political participation of ethnic minorities in the Netherlands’, International Migration Review 17 (3): 445-469. Rath, J. (1988), ‘Political action of immigrants in the Netherlands: Class or ethnicity?’ European Journal of Political Research 16: 623- 644. Reed-Danahay, Deborah & Caroline Brettell (2008), ‘“Communities of practice” for civic and political engagement: Asian Indian and Vietnamese immigrant organizations in a southwest metropolis’, in S. Karthick Ramakrishnan & Irene Bloemraad (eds), Civic Hopes and Political Realities: Immigrants, Community Organizations, and Political Engagement. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.

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Rex, J. (1994), ‘Ethnic mobilization in multicultural societies’, in J. Rex & B. Drury (eds), Ethnic Mobilisation in a Multicultural Europe. Aldershot & Brookfield: Avebury Saito, Leland T. (1998), Race and Politics: Asian Americans, Latinos, and Whites in a Los Angeles Suburb. Chicago: University of Illinois Press. Schmitter, Barbara E. (1980), ‘Immigrants and associations: Their role in the sociopolitical process of immigrant worker integration in West Germany and Switzerland’, International Migration Review 14 (2): 179-192. Schönwälder, Karen (2009), ‘Einwanderer als Wähler, Gewählte und transnationale Akteure’, Politische Vierteljahresschrift 50 (4): 832-849. Schrover, M. & F. Vermeulen (2005), ‘Immigrant organisations’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 31 (5): 823-832. Soininen, M. (1999), ‘The “Swedish model” as an institutional framework for immigrant membership rights’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 25 (4): 685702. Sundeen, R. A., C. Garcia & S. A. Raskoff (2009), ‘Ethnicity, acculturation, and volunteering to organizations: A comparison of African Americans, Asians, Hispanics, and Whites’, Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly 38 (6): 929-955. Thränhardt, Dietrich (1989), ‘Patterns of organization among different ethnic minorities’, New German Critique 46 (1): 10-26. Tiberj, V. & P. Simon (2010), ‘Vie citoyenne et participation politique’, in Chris Beauchemin, Christelle Hamel & Patrick Simon (eds), Enquête Trajectoires et Origines: La Diversité des Populations en France. Premiers Résultats. Documents de Travail de l’INED. Paris: Institut National d’Etudes Démographiques, 109117. Tillie, J. (1998), ‘Explaining migrant voting behaviour in the Netherland: Combining the electoral research and the ethnic studies perspective’, Revue Europeanne des Migrations Internationales 14 (2): 71-95. Tillie, J. (2004), ‘Social capital of organizations and their members: Explaining the political integration of immigrants in Amsterdam’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 30 (3): 529-541. Togeby, L. (1999), ‘Migrants at the polls: An analysis of immigrant and refugee participation in Danish local elections’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 25 (4): 665-684. Togeby, L. (2004), ‘It depends: How organizational participation affects political participation and social trust among second-generation immigrants in Denmark’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 30 (3): 509-528. Togeby L. (2008), ‘The political representation of ethnic minorities: Denmark as a deviant case’, Party Politics 14 (3): 325-343. Trounstine, Jessica (2008), Political Monopolies in American Cities: The Rise and Fall of Bosses and Reformers. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Van der Meer, T. & E. J. Van Ingen (2009), ‘Schools of democracy? Disentangling the relationship between civic participation and political action in 17 European countries’, European Journal of Political Research 48 (2): 281-308.


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Vermeulen, Floris (2006), The Immigrant Organising Process: Turkish Organisations in Amsterdam and Berlin and Surinamese Organisations in Amsterdam, 1960-2000. IMISCOE Dissertations. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Vermeulen, Floris & Maria Berger (2008), ‘Civic networks and political behavior: Turks in Amsterdam and Berlin’, in S. Karthick Ramakrishnan & Irene Bloemraad (eds), Civic Hopes and Political Realities: Immigrants, Community Organizations and Political Engagement. New York: Russell Sage Foundation Press, 160-192 . Vermeulen. F. & T. Plaggenborg (2009), ‘Between ideals and pragmatism: Practitioners working with immigrant youth in Amsterdam and Berlin’, in J. W. Duyvendak, F. Hendriks & M. van Niekerk (eds), City in Sight: Dutch Dealings with Urban Change. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 199-218. Vink, M. P. & G. de Groot (2010), ‘Citizenship attribution in Western Europe: International framework and domestic trends’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36 (5): 713-734. Voss, Kim & Irene Bloemraad (eds) (2011), Rallying for Immigrant Rights: The Fight for Inclusion in Twenty-First Century America. Berkeley: University of California Press. Warner, William Lloyd & Leo Srole (1945), The Social Systems of American Ethnic Groups. New Haven: Yale University Press. Wong, Janelle (2006), Democracy’s Promise: Immigrants and American Civic Institutions. The Politics of Race and Ethnicity. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.

Key reading Bloemraad, Irene (2006), Becoming a Citizen: Incorporating Immigrants and Refugees in the United States and Canada. Berkeley: University of California Press. Hochschild, J. & John Mollenkopf (eds) (2009), Bringing Outsiders In: Transatlantic Perspectives on Immigrant Political Incorporation. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Koopmans, Ruud, Paul Statham, Marco Giugni & Florence Passy (2005), Contested Citizenship: Immigration and Cultural Diversity in Europe. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Morales, L. & M. Giugni (eds) (2011), Social Capital, Political Participation and Migration in Europe: Making Multicultural Democracy Work. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Ramakrishnan, S. Karthick (2005), Democracy in Immigrant America: Changing Demographics and Political Participation. Stanford: Stanford University Press.

Immigrants’ Political Incorporation


About the authors Irene Bloemraad is an associate professor of sociology and Thomas Garden Barnes Chair of Canadian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. Bloemraad’s work examines the intersection of immigration and politics with emphasis on citizenship, immigrants’ political and civic participation and multiculturalism. She also writes about comparative research design and mixed methods. Her research has appeared in academic journals spanning the fields of sociology, political science, history and ethnic and migration studies. She is the author or co-editor of three books: Rallying for Immigrant Rights (2011), Civic Hopes and Political Realities (2008) and Becoming a Citizen (2006). Floris Vermeulen is a professor in the Department of Political Science and co-director of the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES), both at the University of Amsterdam. His research focuses on themes such as civic and political participation of immigrants at the local level, looking at, among other things, the development of populations of immigrant organisations. His work has been published in numerous international volumes and journals such as the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, Turkish Studies, the British Journal of Sociology and Urban Studies.

11 Health Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

Summary This chapter analyses the relationship between migration and health, demonstrating that health is a key indicator of migrants’ integration. It is organised in five sections. The first section describes the types of research carried out so far on this topic. The second section discusses the main determinants of health and the determinants particularly relevant for migrants. The third considers the evidence regarding the health of different groups of migrants. The fourth section examines the main issues that migrants’ health raises for state policies and healthcare organisations. The fifth and concluding section reviews the questions that remain regarding migrants’ health. Keywords: health and migration, health determinants, indicators of health and illness, healthcare

Introduction The topic of health deserves a much more central place in the field of migrant studies than it has enjoyed up to now. Standing back from the field of migration, it is worthwhile to consider the drastic increase in the importance of health as a factor in everybody’s lives. Of all the aspects of human life that have been transformed by industrial modernisation, health is one of the most striking. This is not to say that technology has released us from the fear of death and disease – far from it. But the meaning of health has changed. From being something that was ‘in the lap of the gods’, it has become the focal point of a vast range of human interventions, ranging from high-tech medicine to cultures of self-care. The changed importance of health in our lives can perhaps most easily be gauged in monetary terms. Total per capita health spending in the USA, adjusted for inflation, increased by a factor of around eight over

Changing meanings


Health equity

Migration and health

Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

the last 50 years,1 to the point where health consumes 16 per cent of GNP. In the major European countries, ‘only’ something like half this amount is spent. However, in the developing world – where many migrants originate – per capita spending is a tiny fraction of the US figure. For example, health consumes just 0.4 per cent of GNP in Afghanistan, 1.5 per cent in India, 5 per cent in China, and less than 1 per cent in most African countries.2 In light of these figures, it is not surprising that inequalities in health (both within and between nations) have come to the fore in political debate. A landmark World Health Organization (WHO) report on the social determinants of health showed that socio-economic differences are dramatically reflected in figures concerning life expectancy as well as physical and mental well-being (WHO 2008a). ‘Health equity’ has become a new discipline and an important campaigning issue. Both the above report on social determinants and a recent WHO resolution (WHO 2008b) have called for more attention to the issue of migrant health. Health is perhaps an even more crucial factor in the lives of migrants than it is for other people, because migrants may be less well cushioned against the effect of illness by social protection arrangements, legal safeguards and social support systems. Good health and access to effective healthcare are strongly dependent on social inclusion. Conversely, mental and physical illness can severely handicap migrants in their efforts to become integrated into the host society. Ill health can therefore lead to a downward spiral in the lives of migrants and their families. For this reason, access to effective healthcare should be seen as no less important than housing and education for the well-being and social inclusion of migrants. The rest of this chapter analyses the relationship between migration and health. We start by describing the types of research carried out on this topic and the main problems they face. Then we discuss the major determinants of health, examining the extent to which they are of relevance to migrants in particular. Evidence is presented regarding the health of different groups of migrants, after which main issues are discussed that migrants’ health raises for state policies and healthcare organisations. Finally, the conclusion summarises the main arguments and the questions that remain open regarding migrants’ health.

1 2

This figure is based on data from Reinhardt (2002). The figures are for 2005 and were obtained from the WHO Statistical Information System (WHOSYS).



Research in the field of migrant health Until very recently the topic of migration and health has been seriously neglected, perhaps even more so in the social sciences than in medical disciplines. Researchers in the field of migrant studies have been slow to realise how the scope and importance of health have increased in the last 50 years – how broad the Western concept of ‘health’ has become and what an important part healthcare agencies play in modern industrial societies. The notion of health has been broadened to include many issues that would previously have been regarded as social, moral, political, religious or existential ones. Processes that were previously accepted as normal and natural (such as birth, sexuality and death) are now the focus of intensive medical surveillance and intervention. This is particularly visible in the field of mental health, a sector that has expanded enormously since the 1950s. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association listed 60 categories of abnormal behaviour in 1952, 145 in 1968, 230 in 1980 and 410 in 1994. Today, problems of juvenile delinquency are regarded as the province of ‘developmental psychopathology’. Conflicts on the work floor, burn out, problems in personal relationships, suicide, family conflicts and intergenerational tensions all fall under the umbrella of ‘mental health problems’. Some authors view this increase as a medicalisation or psychologisation of social problems. While this increases social control and the power of health professionals, it also individualises an issue that could have social roots (see Conrad 2007, among others for an overview of this debate). Whether one is for or against this process, it is an undeniable fact of modern life. Although migrants and ethnic minorities were for a long time systematically neglected in research on health, this situation has been changing rapidly since the 1990s. Before then, medical and psychological research routinely excluded ethnic minority subjects. Graham (1992) showed that 96 per cent of the studies published in the 1970s and 1980s in four leading journals of the American Psychological Association excluded African American subjects. To some extent, this was linked to the legacy of racism and assimilationism, but there were also pragmatic reasons for this practice. Statistically speaking, the most powerful test of an experimental effect is obtained with a sample that is as homogeneous as possible. In medical research, this situation led to a state of profound ignorance about the effectiveness of treatments on ethnic and cultural minority patients. A problem for researchers in this field is that clinical records frequently fail to record the ethnicity or migration status of patients, even when it is policy to do so. Sometimes this is a matter of principle, because some health workers feel the practice is discriminatory. Other times, there is simply no category available which really fits the patient. Moreover, no single coding system exists which is ideal from every theoretical point of

Mental health

Record failure


Clinical data

Methodological obstacles

Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

view, and the large number of different classification systems used is a serious obstacle to comparative research. Last but not least, data on the background population (which is essential for calculating rates of incidence or prevalence from clinical data) may contain inadequate information on peoples’ migration status, ethnicity or country of origin. If we are interested in a particular group’s state of health, clinical data provide only an indirect indication. It is necessary to know the size and structure of the underlying population to reach conclusions. For example, general practitioners may find that they are seeing a lot of Turkish men with lower back pain. But how large is the proportion of Turkish men in the area they serve? What is the age structure of this group? In epidemiology, the denominator (the size of the relevant background population) is just as important as the numerator (the numbers in treatment). All too often, information about the background population is simply not adequate for reaching reliable conclusions about migrants’ state of health. There is, however, an even more fundamental problem with clinical data: they only tell us about those who seek treatment, and say nothing at all about those who do not find their way into care. Moreover, they can tell us whether treatment was given, but they do not enable us to judge whether it was appropriate or effective for the problems presented. However, population studies also have drawbacks. Outside the clinical setting, the information that can be collected is more basic in nature, generally depending on self-reported data from the respondent rather than diagnoses by health professionals. Only when funds are available for medical screening of a group can population-based studies begin to match the sophistication of the diagnoses that clinical data are usually based on. To avoid the biases inherent in clinical data, research on the health of populations has to use epidemiological (population-based) surveys (Bhopal 2007, 2013). These, however, are expensive, because new data have to be collected on a large scale. Moreover, serious methodological obstacles lie in wait here for the researcher on migration. Locating subjects and ensuring an adequate response rate are two major hurdles. Ensuring that the standard questionnaires and tests are cross-culturally valid is another. More attention to problems of measurement is a precondition for progress in this field (Stronks 2003). A further obstacle to research is that since host countries do not aim at the integration of certain categories of migrants (such as asylum seekers, provisionally admitted migrants and undocumented migrants), these groups tend to be ignored in health monitoring. Despite all these obstacles, the past 20 years have seen an increase in specific attention to migrants, both in research and in healthcare practice. The amount of attention given tends to be related to the proportion of migrants and ethnic minorities in a particular society and the importance attached to their rights. Australia, where 22 per cent of the population is



foreign-born, and Canada (21 per cent) lead the field in this respect. In most Northern European countries, where the proportion of foreign-born population is around 8-10 per cent, there is moderate interest. Attention is slight in most Eastern European countries, where immigration is a very recent concern. Interest in migrant health is also related to the health risk that immigrants are seen as posing (regardless of the scientific validity of this perception), for example, in relation to the HIV epidemic (HaourKnipe, Fleury & Dubois-Arber 1999). There have been attempts to provide an overview of migrant health in Europe, starting with a WHO conference in 1983 (Colledge, Van Geuns & Svensson 1986). Using a somewhat wider perspective, Bollini (1992) surveyed the situation in seven countries, which she divided into two groups: those with a ‘passive’ attitude, that is, which expected immigrants to adapt to the health system designed for the native-born population (Italy, France, Switzerland and the USA); and those which had acknowledged the challenges posed by immigrant groups and had actively tried to respond to them, for instance, by providing interpreter services during medical encounters (UK, Sweden and Canada). Since Bollini’s article, several other reviews and comparative surveys have been published (see Bollini & Siem 1995; Reitz 1995; Vulpiani, Comelles & Van Dongen 2000; Watters 2002; Watters et al. 2003; Weiss 2005; Stegeman & Costongs 2004; Ingleby et al. 2005b; Mladovsky 2007; Huber et al. 2008; Rechel et al. 2011).


Determinants of health Consideration of the determinants of health illustrates the complexity of the issues involved in studying migrants’ health. For years, migrants’ health problems were described in handbooks of public hygiene and tropical medicine by distinguishing three types of pathologies (Brücker & Fassin 1989): ‘imported pathology’, corresponding to parasitic or hereditary illnesses that migrants brought with them; ‘acquired pathology’, representing the illnesses acquired in the new environmental context; and ‘pathology of adaptation’, reflecting the difficulties faced in the host society in psychosocial terms. This way of conceiving migrants’ health stresses the differences between the ‘Others’ embodied by migrants and the host society, without acknowledging the complexity of the phenomenon and the mobility of people – and viruses. Persistent health differences between the indigenous population and migrants, years after arrival, suggested other factors at work than adaptation problems alone. Differences in socio-economic status were put forward as an alternative explanation of health differences (Nazroo 2001). The comparative roles of socio-economic position and ethnicity in health inequalities have raised several ongoing questions. For instance, a study

Health differences


Macro, meso and micro levels

Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

by Marmot et al. (1984a) led to the conclusion that immigrants’ higher mortality rates cannot be explained by socio-economic differences alone. Nazroo (2010) pointed out that whereas some studies (e.g., Nazroo 2001) have shown socio-economic factors to play a crucial role in explaining ethnic inequalities in health, others claim that these kind of factors are not significant determinants (Wild & McKeigue 1997), or that the interplay between socio-economic, cultural and genetic factors is too complex to allow for one factor to be reduced to another (Smaje 1996). Nazroo (2010: 123) showed that regardless of their socio-economic status, the ‘circumstances of ethnic minority people in the UK and the US are less favourable than those of white people’.3 Another issue concerns measurement: ‘single’ or ‘crude’ indicators of socio-economic position are not accurate enough to control for the impact of this factor, and can give a false impression that differences are due to ethnic, cultural or genetic factors. Therefore, a more sensitive approach is needed, breaking down socio-economic variables into, among others, measures of cultural capital, social capital and housing situation. Recently, it has become accepted that ‘health equity’ can be achieved only if differences among migrants (ethnic, cultural, social, legal or economic) are taken into consideration. The traditional view located the cause of illness in migrants themselves (e.g., infections, traumas, bad genes, psychosocial issues or cultural factors influencing their lifestyle). Today, however, a much wider range of determinants is taken into consideration, implicating also the social environment. These factors are situated at macro-, meso- and micro-levels. In more specific terms, collective and individual health is seen as the outcome of an array of influences: social factors, such as socio-economic status and gender roles; individual differences, including lifestyle, physical endowment, genetic variations, gender and age); the physical environment, with such factors as air quality and exposure to toxins; the macro-political contexts that shape public policies, including welfare traditions and gross domestic product; and even organisational factors operating within healthcare providers, involving structural, relational and subjective factors that affect the relation between service providers and users. This variety of factors is further complicated by the interrelations existing between them (figure 11.1). From this we can see how difficult it is to hierarchically classify the different determinants of a health problem or identify its main cause (aetiology).


Nazroo (2010: 123, quoting Oliver and Shapiro 1995) gives the following example to explain this vicious circle: within occupational groups black people have ­lower income than white people, but if we look at the same occupational cate­ gory, black people are less likely to be promoted, they have lower incomes and they are less likely to be home owners.



Figure 11.1  Health determinants

Source: Author

Today we recognise that highly complex models are needed to explain variations in health. Among the different models that have been developed since the 1980s, some are referred to as social models (Black et al. 1980, Acheson 1998). In Whitehead and Dahlgren (1991) the determinants of health are illustrated as ‘layers of influence’.4 Asthana and Halliday (2006: 28) mention different types of reasons for health inequalities.5 Wilkinson and Marmot (2003) discuss the factors affecting health outcomes in terms of the health implications of economic and social policies, in particular, those concerning the ‘social gradient’, early life, social exclusion, the workplace and unemployment, social support, addiction, food and transport. The acknowledgement of the complexity of health determinants has permitted analyses of migrants’ health that go beyond ill-defined categories of difference, such as ‘ethnicity’ or ‘culture’, and beyond simple dichotomies, such as ‘native-born’ versus ‘migrant’. In this way it has encouraged more attention to the heterogeneity of migrant populations and the specificity of migrants’ situations.



The layers include (from the outside): general socio-economic cultural and environmental conditions influencing living and working conditions; social and community networks; individual lifestyle factors; constitutional factors of individuals. Such as individual income, beliefs, norms and values influencing health behaviour; status, control, social support at work or at home and the balance between effort and reward, events and processes starting before birth and during childhood, political processes and distribution of power affecting the provision of services as well as the quality of physical environment and social relationships.



Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

Specific factors affecting migrants

Two-step explanatory model

Alongside these general explanatory schemes for health and illness, researchers have proposed several types of factors affecting the health of migrants in particular. First of all, the migration process itself brings healthrelated risks, as life in a new context brings difficulties and may create stresses related, for instance, to feelings of isolation in the host country. Second, enmity towards newcomers in the host society can bring health risks. Hostility can range from a simple lack of integration policies to overt discrimination and racism. For instance, the labour market is often ethnically or racially segmented, so that migrants can access only certain economic sectors, usually those which pose more health risks (Bloch, Neal & Solomos 2013; Solomos 2003). Finally, migrants may face structural barriers to accessing healthcare due to their positions as migrants. These include, for instance, restricted entitlement to healthcare, as in the case of refugees (Bloch 2008) and undocumented migrants (for the UK see Bloch, Sigona & Zetter 2010; Ruhs & Anderson 2010). Following this logic, Stronks et al. (1999) proposed a two-step explanatory model to understand the factors affecting migrants’ health (figure 11.2). Their model assumes that ethnicity does not affect health directly, but through a range of intervening variables. The first set of such variables are the characteristics of the ethnic group (such as ‘acculturation stress’, ‘loss of familiar environment’ and ‘experiences of discrimination and racism’). The second set is a range of factors that are known to affect health (lifestyle, physical and social environment, psychosocial stress and use of healthcare services). Even if these elements have negative consequences for many groups of migrants, it is important to note that migrants’ health can sometimes be better than that of the host population, for example, because of selection processes (the ‘healthy migrant effect’ discussed below) or due to religious beliefs that discourage alcohol consumption or sexual promiscuity. Some illnesses might be common to both ‘foreign’ and ‘native-born’ populations, but ‘their clinical manifestations and statistical frequencies may differ quite notably’ (Fassin 2001). Certain illnesses may affect migrants of a specific origin, due to environmental or genetic factors.6 However, this should not lead us to a ‘racialisation of difference’ simply because of an association between health and ethnic origin, since differences can be observed between people having the same ethnicity who differ in other respects (Fassin 2001): between, for instance, men and women, blue-collar workers and service employees, and rural and urban residents. Living conditions may 6

For instance, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency is associated with people from the Mediterranean, while cystic fibrosis affects mostly white Europeans and some South Asians and sickle cell diseases affect mostly African Caribbeans and Asians (Dunnell 2008).



play a crucial role. Poor environments, bad-quality housing, heavy jobs in unsafe environments and long hours of work can give rise to specific health problems among certain groups (Ingleby et al. 2012a). The model of Stronks et al. (1999) aimed to show the complexity of the relationships between ethnicity and health and to systematise the different kinds of variables that may intervene. Clearly, the model can be endlessly elaborated, and there is much more to be said about the complex causal pathways which may mediate relationships between ethnicity and health. Figure 11.2 Conceptual framework integrating possible explanations of the relation between ethnicity and health

Source: Adapted from Stronks et al. (1999)

Intersectionality approach For some scholars the intersectionality approach7 offers a transformative paradigm for health determinants (see Hankivsky & Christoffersen 2008, among others). This approach emphasises the interplay between the many different factors affecting health. It seeks to consider multiple and interconnecting forms of inequality, difference and diversity and to understand what is created and experienced at the intersection of race/ethnicity, gender, class and other categories of difference. At this intersection of different categories, a new status is formed that is more than simply the sum of the individual components (Jackson 2003). The intersectionality approach is


Historically, the term ‘intersectionality’ emerged from critical social science and humanities researchers such as Patricia Hill Collins (1990) and Kimberlé Crenshaw (Crenshaw et al. 1995).




Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

seen as a transformative way to consider health determinants because it does not assume the primacy of one category over another. It therefore allows a better understanding of the complexity (Hankivsky & Christoffersen 2008: 275-276). Numerous determinants are always at play, according to this perspective, which encourages a ‘contextual analysis that probes beneath single identities, experiences and social locations to consider a range of axes of difference to better understand any situation of disadvantage’ (ibid.: 276; Yuval-Davis 2006). The intersectionality approach furthermore helps to conceptualise the ‘cumulative and interlocking dynamics [of power] that affect human experiences’ (Hankivsky & Christoffersen 2008: 276). Finally, focusing the analysis on the dynamics of power leads us to consider the implications of intersectionality for social justice (Yuval-Davis 2006). The approach stimulates an acknowledgement of the host society’s responsibility to ensure that migrants have the same opportunities as the native-born population.

Indicators of health and illness


To begin with, we can observe that much research does not start out by referring to migration as such, but instead categorises people by race or ethnicity: ‘black’ or ‘white’, ‘Moroccan’, ‘Asian’ and so on. This says nothing about the length of time the people in question have been living in a country. In fact, ‘indigenous’ minority groups like the American Indians may have been there long before any other groups arrived. It is therefore important when studying ethnic differences to distinguish between first, second and later generations of migrant populations. Moreover, many different ways of classifying ethnicity are in use, which sometimes makes it very difficult to compare results from different studies. Nevertheless, it is clear that migrant populations, as well as differing from host populations in terms of their state of health, often differ significantly from each other. Bhopal (2007, 2013) gives a wide-ranging overview of this field of work. We will now briefly describe four different indicators that can be used to assess the health of a group. Mortality rates One indicator is the mortality of a given group; that is, the percentage of group members who die in a given period. The UK Census shows variations in mortality rates by country of birth and by gender (Nazroo 2010: 113). For instance, in the 1991 census period, men living in the UK but born in the Caribbean had low mortality rates overall, whereas men born in Bangladesh had a high overall mortality rate. Both groups, however, had high rates of mortality from strokes.



Such figures have to be interpreted with caution. In the first wave of any migration, the people who migrate tend to be fit and healthy, ready to face the hazards of journeying far from home. Moreover, some migrant groups keep close contact with their home country and return if they become sick or grow old. Their deaths are not recorded in the host country, so official statistics on mortality rates may not give an accurate impression of the health of that group. There are also several other ways in which inaccuracies can arise. For example, if members of some ethnic groups are less likely than others to be accurately classified in a national census, but their origins are accurately recorded when they die, then the death rate of these groups will be overestimated. Conversely, the death rate will be underestimated if ethnicity is not correctly classified when a person’s death is officially registered. In the UK, differences in health across ethnic groups have been relatively well documented compared to other European countries (Erens, Primatesta & Prior 2001; Harding & Maxwell 1997; Marmot et al. 1984; Marmot, Shipley & Rose 1984; Nazroo 2001; Sproston & Mindell 2006), whereas mortality data are not recorded by ethnicity but by country of origin.

Classification problems

Life expectancy A widely used indicator of general health is life expectancy, but like mortality rates, this can be difficult to interpret in the case of migrants. For instance, a Dutch study showed that life expectancy for Moroccan-born men is 3.5 years longer than that for native-born Dutch, while it is 1.5 years shorter for Turkish- and Surinamese-born men. For the reasons given above, the explanation for these differences is unclear (RIVM 2002).

Unclear explanations

Morbidity Another indicator that is often used in survey research is morbidity (illness) measured by subjective health. In this case too important differences can be found according to country of birth and ethnicity. However, these again must be interpreted with caution, as many factors might be responsible for them. In the UK, Bangladeshi rates of poor subjective health are 50 per cent higher than those of white English people (in the 1999 Health Survey for England, see Erens, Primatesta & Prior 2001; Dunnell 2008; Nazroo 2010). Similar findings have been reported for other countries. In the Netherlands, for example, when asked about their experienced state of health, 79 per cent of the native-born population describe this as ‘good’ or ‘very good’, compared to 71 per cent for first-generation immigrants from Western countries and only 63 per cent for first-generation non-Western immigrants (CBS 2004). However, the validity of such self-reported measures across groups is unknown (Bruijnzeels 2004: 89).

Unknown validity


Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

In addition to these measures of general health, researchers may focus on particular conditions or illnesses using, as mentioned at the start of this chapter, clinical studies, which record the diagnoses of professionals in a healthcare setting, or epidemiological or population-based studies, which take the whole population (or a sample of it) as their starting point. Healthy behaviour Complex findings

A final type of health data that can be collected concerns healthy behaviour. Here too, the findings concerning migrants are complex. Migrant groups that smoke less or are less prone to excessive alcohol consumption may have relatively healthier lifestyles. At the same time, however, some groups may be more likely to use hard and soft drugs and have unsafe sex, and less likely to exercise and take part in sport, while at the same time being more likely to do manual work requiring expenditure of energy. One cannot generalise about migrant groups without taking into account sex, age and ethnicity. A Dutch survey shows that Turkish men under 35 have particularly unhealthy lifestyles, but Moroccan women particularly healthy ones (RIVM 2002), while a Swiss survey observes that Turkish women show less healthy behaviour (using drugs more frequently, mainly painkillers and sedatives administered by medical prescription, and exercising less) compared to other groups of migrants (Rommel, Weilandt & Eckert 2006; Garbadinho, Wanner & Dahinden 2007). These results highlight the fact that data concerning healthy behaviour should be treated with caution. Another reason for cautious interpretation of this data is that the pattern which emerges for migrants may depend on the research methods used (Bruijnzeels 2004: 11, 47).

The need to differentiate within migrant groups Differentiating between groups of migrants may be complicated by the fact that members of groups may have different rights according to their type of residence permit (i.e., permanence of residence, access to work and access to healthcare). This may have consequences for their health. Besides these legal distinctions, research has shown migrants’ health and medical experiences to vary considerably across space and time (Marks & Worboys 1997). Sub-groups differ in crucial ways, related not only to the country of origin but also to the type of migration (perhaps related to different rights in the host country and different migration trajectories in terms of the journey, social and economic capital, employment experiences, integration outcomes, language development, transnational and ethnic linkages, aspirations for return to the country of origin and perceptions of belonging). In addition, distinction should be made between (for



instance) the well-educated and those lacking literacy, men and women, old and young, and rich and poor. For all these reasons, it is misguided to expect that generalisations about the health problems of migrants will hold true overall. We use in what follows a legal categorisation and discuss some of the particular health problems which may be associated with the type of residence permit a migrant has. We examine the cases of post-colonial migrants, labour migrants, refugees and asylum seekers, and undocumented migrants. Post-colonial migrants As a group, post-colonial migrants may experience fewer problems of access to care because their entitlement to healthcare will usually be similar to that of the native-born. However, difficulties can arise as a result of racism and the neglect of special needs (e.g., culturally appropriate care for the elderly). Post-colonial migrants formed the first wave of migration to Europe after the Second World War, so this group includes many older people who face chronic conditions that are more likely to arise with increasing age. For instance, studies show that such migrants are more likely to be overweight and to have high blood pressure, though less likely to have high cholesterol levels (for the Netherlands see RIVM 2002; for the UK see Dunnell 2008). In the Netherlands, African-Surinamese and Hindustani-Surinamese men and women have been found to have higher systolic and diastolic blood pressure than native-born Dutch (Bruijnzeels 2004: S67). Diabetes mellitus is more common among migrants, and this is especially true in deprived urban areas. In the UK, men originating from the Caribbean were 50 per cent more likely to die from a stroke and people of Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Afro-Caribbean origin were 3-6 per cent more likely to suffer from type II diabetes than other ethnic groups (Dunnell 2008). However, inadequate or inconsistent registration of data hampers research in this area. Labour migrants Although most migration nowadays is related in one way or another to the search for employment, we include in this group only those who acquired a residence permit by virtue of their job. In many countries, such classical ‘labour migrants’ are seen as temporary residents (as was the case with the earlier ‘guest workers’). They are often involved in low-skilled work that entails health risks. Problems are often related to socio-economic disadvantage and poor access to care. In Switzerland, Egger, Minder & Smith (1990) showed that accident rates are significantly higher among immigrant groups than among the native-born. In the Netherlands, Van der Veen, Schrijvers & Redout (2003) found that up to age 40, Moroccan men

Legal categorisation


Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

are more likely to be affected by accidents and infections. Using the results of several European studies, Bollini and Siem (1995) concluded that a longer duration of stay leads to health degradation among some immigrant groups because of their poor living and working conditions. They termed this the exhausted migrant effect. Refugees and asylum seekers Limited rights to healthcare for asylum seekers may exacerbate their existing health problems, which can be considerable (HUMA 2009). Traditionally, this group was assumed to suffer mainly from effects of traumatic pre-migration experiences, but today there is an increasing tendency to emphasise the psychosocial problems they share with other migrants (see Ingleby 2005a). Various studies have noted a higher prevalence of tuberculosis, hepatitis B, malaria and intestinal parasites among asylum seekers coming from countries where these conditions are endemic. Although the overall prevalence of HIV among immigrants does not differ from that in the native-born population, some important differences exist between countries of origin. There is a higher prevalence among those hailing from Africa, most of whom arrive as asylum seekers (see among others Aldous, Bardsley & Daniell 1999; Burnett & Peel 2001). This is to be expected on the basis of the worldwide distribution of HIV infections. Undocumented migrants The group of undocumented migrants is even more heterogeneous than the first three, containing as it does not only people from different socioeconomic, geographic and ethnic origins, but also those with different legal backgrounds (clandestine or fraudulent entry; valid entry but with a breach of terms of admission, such as unauthorised work or overstaying a tourist visa or work permit; failed asylum seekers; domestic workers with inadequate documentation; victims of trafficking). Among undocumented migrants there may be acute problems of poor health, compounded by limited access to care (HUMA 2009). Healthy migrant effect We have already mentioned the so-called healthy migrant effect, a controversial phenomenon observed by Raymond-Duchosal as early as 1929. This term suggests that immigrants are on average healthier than the nativeborn population. The explanation most commonly offered is that those who are older and less healthy have a lower propensity to migrate (see Manfellotto 2002; Wanner, Bouchardy & Raymond 2000; Westerling &



Rosén 2002). However, in some cases comparisons between immigrant and native-born populations yield conflicting evidence. Irish migrants in Britain appear to be the group with the worst state of health, not only compared to indigenous white British, but also to other ethnic minority groups, and this difference persists over generations (Greenslade, Madden & Pearson 1997). Neither is the ‘healthy migrant effect’ found universally. Where it is in evidence, it is subject to considerable variations with respect to health status, health profile and type of illness. Finally, while for many years migrant populations were recruited specifically for labour purposes, so that physical weakness reduced their chances of getting into the host country, in some cases it may today be illness that makes migration possible. In extreme cases and when there is no possibility of the person being treated in their country of origin, the body – or, to be more precise, the ‘sick body’ – may facilitate the acquisition of an entry visa on humanitarian grounds (Chimienti & Achermann 2007; Fassin 2005; Fassin & D’Halluin 2005). To conclude this section, we can say that patterns of illness and unhealthy behaviour are related to specific groups and sub-groups, rather than to general categories such as ‘immigrants’ or ‘native-born’. There is no general tendency for immigrants to have worse or better health than non-immigrants. Some problems relating to alcohol and tobacco use or overeating are reduced in certain migrant groups, but because migrants generally enjoy a less advantaged social position, many of the problems they have are those associated with relative poverty, marginalisation and heavy forms of labour. Their subjective well-being is often reported to be less than that of non-migrants, while higher rates of perinatal mortality, sexually transmitted diseases and a number of other health problems are increasingly well documented in certain groups. Analyses providing a hierarchy of the causes of state of health by ethnicity or country of origin should be interpreted with caution, with an eye to whether and how the multiple determinants of health have been controlled for. It is difficult at present to make many generalisations about the state of migrant health, due to a shortage of epidemiological data. At the most, results can be reported from research in one particular country. Methods and classification schemes are not yet sufficiently standardised to enable cross-national comparisons, though current projects are working in this direction.

Political and organisational dilemmas regarding migrants’ health Health systems in many countries today confront with a dual task in relation to migrants’ health (Cattacin & Chimienti 2007). They have to ensure that the healthcare needs of existing migrant populations and ethnic minority groups are effectively satisfied, while also dealing with newcomers

Conflicting evidence

Differences between groups


Culturally competent care

Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

who may have special problems and whose civil status may be uncertain (e.g., undocumented migrants and asylum seekers). Research has shown that health systems all too often fail in both of these tasks, despite some recent initiatives and examples of ‘good practice’. Some of the gaps that arise have been covered by either the private sector, which is not subject to control and monitoring and is financially beyond the reach of many migrants, or by non-governmental initiatives (e.g., charities and NGOs), which have limited infrastructure and capacity. In the long run, exclusionary frameworks are costly and inefficient and generate chronic problems for the health system (Portes, Fernández-Kelly & Light 2012). For example, if the only service providers available to all are emergency services, these become overloaded by people needing urgent care arising from non-acute health problems. Migration thus represents a major challenge for service providers. The aim of providing inclusive healthcare is further complicated by the need to make distinctions among users by migrant background and status. Many research projects and practical initiatives have sought to answer the question of how health providers can improve services for a diverse migrant population. The approach labelled ‘culturally competent care’ (CCC), developed in the 1990s, is one attempt in this direction (Krajic et al. 2005; Bischoff 2006; Ingleby et al. 2012b). CCC works on two levels. Firstly, at the level of the organisation, healthcare providers have to become competent in dealing with migrants. This involves training individual staff members and adapting the whole organisation to a diverse population (e.g., in policies for recruiting staff). Secondly, at the level of users, migrants have to be better informed about their rights and be treated as partners in the development of healthcare services. This empowerment perspective is particularly important, and it requires development of a new way of relating to users. CCC is an ambitious approach, that nonetheless has shown recurrent weaknesses in confronting with differences within migrant groups. The notion of culture, for instance, despite sensitivity towards this issue has often been understood in a static way. This is foremost because of the difficulty of becoming familiar with all the existing and continuously changing characteristics of people from another country or from an ethnic minority. Furthermore, taking the idea of ‘culture’ into consideration in the relationship between caregivers and receivers invites the risk of stereotyping and stigmatisation. Other approaches have attempted to avoid this risk by focusing not on differences, but on common characteristics among groups or on the creative results of interactive dynamics (Domenig 2004; Dahinden & Bischoff 2010). The challenge, in fact, is how to handle clients in the health sector whose main common characteristic is that they are diverse, rather than how to handle prejudices based on the culturalisation of difference (Terkessisidis 2010).



Another challenge of the CCC approach has to do with a complication that cannot be managed, given the way the pilot health systems are organised. The system provides health care according to a model developed for middle-class users (assuming a high degree of autonomy and health literacy on the part of the patients). However this model is ill-suited to dealing with the healthcare needs of people on the margins, despite attempts to empower, inform and treat them as partners (Cattacin 2007). The CCC approach, finally, focuses only on improving healthcare, not entitlements, whereas the lack of healthcare coverage for people unable to afford health insurance may be a far more serious problem for migrants and ethnic minorities. This was particularly true in the USA prior to the passing of the Affordable Care Act in 2010. In Europe, lack of entitlement mainly affects undocumented migrants and asylum seekers, as well as some migrants whose healthcare coverage depends on being employed. Moreover, it is difficult to provide good quality healthcare to migrants who are obliged to be constantly on the move. Those with uncertain legal status frequently change doctors and make little use of health services, especially mental health services and prevention and health promotion activities (see, e.g., Watters 2002). Although there have been attempts to influence national policies at the European and transnational level, adequate policies in the field of health and migration have to take into account different national histories and values. The challenge regarding policies on migrant health is then threefold: to reconcile the demands of immigration or integration policies and public health; to coordinate policies at the European or transnational level with those of different countries, in order to avoid spreading out health problems; and to integrate mobility into healthcare’s logic. In other words, the system has to be aware that there will always be newcomers with specific issues.

Conclusion At the beginning of this chapter we argued that the topic of health deserves a much more central place in the field of migrant studies than it has enjoyed up to now. The brief discussion of research results concerning migrants’ state of health and the main determinants of illness revealed important inequalities between migrants and native-born populations, as well among different groups of migrants. We also mentioned that health problems can continue and have repercussions for the descendants of migrants. Existing data have seldom allowed us to study changes in health over time (longitudinal surveys), to compare the situation in different countries of destination, or to properly compare the situation between migrants in different categories and the native-born population. Many ques-

Three-fold challenges



Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

tions remain unanswered as well. For instance, what is the specific impact of integration, legal, socio-economic and cultural status over time? What is the best way to categorise migrants in order to make comparisons? What are the economic and social costs of the lack of specific measures regarding migrants’ health? The evidence gathered so far suggests a need for measures at the political and organisational levels so as to remedy the current inequalities in healthcare and state of health. As in other areas besides health, migrants could in this respect open the door for other vulnerable groups, making society more sensitive towards differences.

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Bollini, P. & H. Siem (1995), ‘No real progress towards equity: Health of migrants and ethnic minorities on the eve of the year 2000’, Social Science and Medicine 41 (6): 819-828. Brücker, G. & D. Fassin (1989), Santé Publique. Paris: Ellipses. Bruijnzeels, M. (ed.) (2004), ‘Migrant health in Europe (conference abstracts)’, Ethnicity and Health 9 (1, Supplement): 3-124. Burnett, A. & M. Peel (2001), ‘Asylum seekers and refugees in Britain: Health needs of asylum seekers and refugees’, BMJ 322 (7285): 544-547. Cattacin, S. (2007), ‘Migration, power and health: An exploration’, in C. Björngren Cuadra and S. Cattacin (eds), Migration and Health: Difference Sensitivity from an Organisational Perspective. Malmö: IMER, 29-35. Cattacin, S. & M. Chimienti (2007), ‘From control policies to health policies as a tool for inclusion’, International Journal of Public Health 52 (2): 73-74. CBS (2004), Allochtonen in Nederland 2004. Voorburg & Heerlen: Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek. Chimienti, M. & Ch. Achermann. (2007), ‘Coping strategies of precarious migrants in relation to personal health and health structures: The case of asylum seekers and undocumented migrants in Switzerland’, in C. Björngren Cuadra & S. Cattacin (eds), Difference Sensitivity from an Organisational Perspective. Malmo: Institute for Studies of Migration, 65-74. Colledge, M., H. A. van Geuns & P. G. Svensson (1986), Migration and Health: Towards an Understanding of the Health Care Needs of Ethnic Minorities. Proceedings of a Consultative Group on Ethnic Minorities held in The Hague, Netherlands, 28-30 November 1983). Copenhagen, World Health Organization. Collins, P. H. (1990), Black Feminist Thought: Knowledge, Consciousness, and the Politics of Empowerment. New York: Routledge. Conrad, P. (2007), The Medicalization of Society: On the Transformation of Human Conditions into Medical Disorders. Baltimore: John Hopkins Press. Crenshaw, K., N. Gotanda, G. Peller & K. Thomas (eds) (1995), Critical Race The­ory: The Key Writings That Formed the Movement. New York: New Press. Dahinden, J. & A. Bischoff (2010), Dolmetschen, Vermitteln, Schlichten: Integration der Diversität? Serie Soziale Kohäsion und Kultureller Pluralismus. Zurich: Seismo. Domenig, D. (2004), ‘Transcultural change: A challenge for the public health system’, Applied Nursing Research 17 (3): 213-216. Dunnell, K. (2008), ‘National statistician’s annual article on society’, available at uk/articles/nojournal/NSA_article.pdf. Edwin, J. B. (2006), ‘Non UK-born migrants are “largely hidden” from NHS and have high burden of HIV, TB and malaria’, Aidsmap News, 16 November. Egger, M., C. E. Minder & G. D. Smith (1990), ‘Health inequalities and migrant workers in Switzerland’, Lancet 336 (8718): 816. Erens, B., P. Primatesta & G. Prior (2001), Health Survey for England 1999: The Health of Minority Ethnic Groups. London: The Stationary Office.


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Fassin, D. (2001), ‘Le culturalisme pratique de la santé publique: Critique d’un sens commun’, in J. P. Dozon & D. Fassin (eds), Critique de la Santé Publique: Une Approche Anthropologique. Paris: Balland, 181-208. Fassin, D. (2005), ‘Compassion and repression: The moral economy of immigration policies in France’, Cultural Anthropopology 20 (3): 362-387. Fassin, D. & E. D’Halluin (2005), ‘The truth from the body: Medical certificates as ultimate evidence for asylum seekers’, American Anthropologist 107 (4): 597608. Garbadinho, A., Ph. Wanner & J. Dahinden (2007), La Santé des Populations Migrantes en Suisse: Analyse des Données du GMM. Etudes du SFM 49. Neuchâtel: Swiss Forum for Migration and Population Studies. Graham, S. (1992), ‘Most of the subjects were white and middle-class: Trends in published research on African Americans in selected APA journals, 1970-1989’, American Psychologist 47: 629-639. Greenslade, L., M. Madden & M. Pearson (1997), ‘From visible to invisible: The “problem” of the health of Irish people in Britain’, in L. Marks & M. Worboys (eds), Migrants, Minorities and Health: Historical and Contemporary Studies. London and New York: Routledge, 147-148. Hankivsky, O. & A. Christoffersen (2008), ‘Intersectionality and the determinants of health: A Canadian perspective’, Critical Public Health 18 (3): 271-283. Haour-Knipe, M., F. Fleury & F. Dubois-Arber (1999), ‘HIV/AIDS prevention for migrants and ethnic minorities: Three phases of evaluation’, Social Science and Medicine 49 (10): 1357-1372. Harding, S. & R. Maxwell (1997), ‘Differences in the mortality of migrants’, in F. Drever & M. Whitehead (eds), Health Inequalities. Decennial Supplement Series 15. London: Her Majesty’s Stationery Office. Huber, M., A. Stanciole, J. Bremner & K. Wahlbeck (2008), Quality in and Equality of Access to Healthcare Services: HealthQUEST. Brussels: DG Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities. Available at php?xml_id=866. HUMA (Health for Undocumented Migrants and Asylum Seekers) (2009), Access to Health Care for Undocumented Migrants and Asylum Seekers in 10 EU Countries: Law and Practice, available at Ingleby, D. (ed.) (2005), Forced Migration and Mental Health: Rethinking the Care of Refugees and Displaced Persons. New York: Springer. Ingleby, D., M. Chimienti, M. Ormond & C. de Freitas (2005), ‘The role of health in integration’, in M. L. Fonseca & J. Malheiros (eds), Social Integration and Mobility: Education, Housing and Health. IMISCOE Cluster B5 State of the Art Report. Lisbon: Centro de Estudos Geográficos, 88-119. Available at www.ceg. Ingleby, D., A. Krasnik, V. Lorant & O. Razum (eds) (2012a), Health Inequalities and Risk Factors among Migrants and Ethnic Minorities. COST Series on Health and Diversity, Volume I. Antwerp & Apeldoorn: Garant.



Ingleby, D., A. Chiarenza, W. Devillé & I. Kotsioni (eds) (2012b), Inequalities in Health Care for Migrants and Ethnic Minorities. COST Series on Health and Diversity, Volume II. Antwerp & Apeldoorn: Garant. Jackson, B. (2003), ‘Situating epistemology’, in M. Texler Segal, V. Demos & J. J. Kronenfeld (eds), Advances in Gender Research. Oxford: Elsevier. Krajic, K., U. Karl-Trummer, S. Novak-Zezula, M. Wirtenberger & J. M. Pelikan (2005), Migrant-Friendly Hospitals in an Ethno-Culturally Diverse Europe: Experiences from a European Pilot Hospital Project. Vienna: LBIMGS. Available at Manfellotto, D. (2002), ‘Case study 5: From misinformation and ignorance to recognition and care: immigrants and homeless in Rome, Italy’, in Health Systems Confront Poverty. Geneva: World Health Organization, 69-78. Available at Marks, L. & M. Worboys (eds) (1997), Migrants, Minorities and Health: Historical and Contemporary Studies. London and New York: Routledge. Marmot, M. G., M. J. Shipley & G. Rose (1984), ‘Inequalities in death: Specific explanations of a general pattern?’, The Lancet 1: 1003-1006. Marmot, M. G., A. M. Adelstein, L. Bulusu and OPCS (1984a), Immigrant Mortality in England and Wales 1970-78: Causes of Death by Country of Birth. London: Her Majesty’s Stationery Office. Mladovsky, P. (2007), Migration and Health in the EU. Research Note for EC Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities. Unit E1: Social and Demographic Analysis. Available at obServlet?docId=3948&langId=en. Nazroo, J. Y. (2001), Ethnicity, Class and Health. London: Policy Studies Insti­tute. Nazroo, J. Y. (2010), ‘Health and health care’, in A. Bloch & J. Solomos (eds), Race and Ethnicity in the Twenty-First Century. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 112-137. Portes, A., P. Fernández-Kelly & D. Light (2012), ‘Life on the edge: Immigrants confront the American health system’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 35 (1): 3-22. Rechel, B., P. Mladovsky, W. Devillé, B. Rijks, R. Petrova-Benedict & M. McKee (eds) (2011), Migration and Health in the European Union. Maidenhead: McGraw Hill & Open University Press. Reinhardt, U. (2002). ‘How healthy is our health care?’, Princeton Alumni Weekly, 10 April. Available at _041002Reinhardt.html. Reitz, J. G. (1995), A Review of the Literature on Aspects of Ethno-Racial Access, Utilization and Delivery of Social Services. Report prepared as a joint project of the Multicultural Coalition for Access to Family Services, Toronto and the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services. Available at http://ceris. RIVM (2002), Gezondheid op Koers? Volksgezondheid Toekomst Verkenning 2002. Bilthoven: Rijksinstituut voor Volksgezondheid en Milieu.


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Rommel, A., C. Weilandt & J. Eckert (2006), Gesundheitsmonitoring der schweizerischen Migrationsbevölkerung. Endbericht. Bonn: Wissenschaftliches Institut der Ärzte Deutschlands. Ruhs, M. & B. Anderson (2010), ‘Semi-compliance and illegality in migrant labour markets: An analysis of migrants, employers and the state in the UK’, Population, Space and Place 16: 195-211. Smaje, C. (1996), ‘The ethnic patterning of health: New directions for theory and research’, Sociology of Health and Illness 18 (2): 139-171. Solomos, J. (2003), Race and Racism in Britain. Third edition. Basingstoke: Palgrave. Sproston, K. & J. Mindell (2006), Health Survey for England 2004: The Health of Minority Ethnic Groups. London: The Information Centre. Stegeman, I. & C. Costongs (2004), Promoting Social Inclusion and Tackling Health Inequalities in Europe: An Overview of Good Practices from the Health Field. Eurohealthnet Report. Available at Practices.pdf. Stronks, K. (2003), ‘Public health research among immigrant populations: Still a long way to go’, European Journal of Epidemiology 18: 841-842. Stronks, K., P. Uniken Venema, N. Dahhan & L. Gunning-Schepers (1999), ‘Allochtoon, dus ongezond? Mogelijke verklaringen voor de samenhang tussen etniciteit en gezondheid geïntegreerd in een conceptueel model’, Tijdschrift voor Gezondheidswetenschappen 77: 33-40. Terkessisidis, M. (2010), Interkultur. Frankfurt: Suhrkamp. Van der Veen, E., C. Schrijvers & E. Redout (2003), Bewijs voor Verschil. The Hague: ZonMw. Vulpiani, P., J. M. Comelles & E. van Dongen (2000), Health for All, All in Health. Perugia: Cidis & Alisei. Wanner, P., C. Bouchardy & L. Raymond (2000), Mortalité des Etrangers en Suisse: Analyse par Grand Groupe de Causes et par Type de Cancer, 1989-1992. Neuchâtel: Office Fédéral de la Statistique. Watters, C. (2002). ‘Migration and mental health care in Europe: Report of a preliminary mapping exercise’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 28 (1): 153172. Watters, C., D. Ingleby, M. Bernal, C. de Freitas, N. de Ruuk, M. van Leeuwen & S. Venkatesan (2003), Good Practices in Mental Health and Social Care for Asylum Seekers and Refugees. Final report of a project for the European Refugee Fund, European Commission. Canterbury: University of Kent. Weiss, R. (2005), ‘Macht migration krank?’ Interdisziplinäre Perspektiven und Stand der psychosozialen Forschung. Zurich: Seismo. Westerling, R. & M. Rosén (2002), ‘“Avoidable” mortality among immigrants in Sweden’, European Journal of Public Health 12: 279-286. Wild, S. & P. McKeigue (1997), ‘Cross sectional analysis of mortality by country of birth in England and Wales’, British Medical Journal 314: 705-710. Wilkinson, R. & M. Marmot (eds) (2003), Social Determinants of Health: The Solid Facts. Second edition. Copenhagen: World Health Organization.



Whitehead, M. & G. Dahlgren (1991), ‘What can be done about inequalities in health?’ The Lancet 338: 1059-1063. WHO (2008a), Closing the Gap in a Generation: Health Equity through Action on the Social Determinants of Health. Commission on Social Determinants of Health Final Report. Geneva: World Health Organization. WHO (2008b), Migrant Health. Resolution passed at the Sixty-First World Health Assembly on 24 May (WHA61.7). Geneva: World Health Organization. Yuval-Davis, N. (2006), ‘Intersectionality and feminist politics’, European Journal of Women’s Studies 13 (3): 193-209.

Key reading Bhopal, R. S. (2013), Migration, Ethnicity and Health in Multicultural Societies. Second (revised) edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Fernández-Kelly, P. & A. Portes (eds) (2012) ‘Healthcare and immigration: Understanding the connections’, Ethnic and Racial Studies 35 (2, Special Issue): 1-149. Ingleby, D., A. Krasnik, V. Lorant & O. Razum (eds) (2012), Health Inequalities and Risk Factors among Migrants and Ethnic Minorities. COST Series on Health and Diversity, Volume I. Antwerp & Apeldoorn: Garant. Ingleby, D., A. Chiarenza, W. Devillé & I. Kotsioni (eds) (2012), Inequalities in Health Care for Migrants and Ethnic Minorities. COST Series on Health and Diversity, Volume II. Antwerp & Apeldoorn: Garant. Nazroo, J. Y. (2001), Ethnicity, Class and Health. London: Policy Studies Institute. Nazroo, J. Y. (2010), ‘Health and health care’, in A. Bloch & J. Solomos (eds), Race and Ethnicity in the Twenty-First Century. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 112-137.

About the authors Milena Chimienti is a professor at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Western Switzerland. She was previously a lecturer in sociology at the City University London (2008-2012.) Her latest publications include a special issue of Ethnic and Racial Studies, ‘Irregular Migrants: Policy, Politics, Motives and Everyday Lives’ (2011), co-edited with Alice Bloch; ‘Social Movements of Irregular Migrants, Recognition, and Citizenship’ with John Solomos (Globalizations, 2011); ‘Selling Sex in Order to Migrate: The End of the Migratory Dream?’ (Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 2010); and Prostitution et Migration: La Dynamique de l’Agir Faible (2009). David Ingleby is a researcher at the Centre for Social Science and Global Health of the University of Amsterdam. He is also emeritus professor of intercultural psychology at Utrecht University and Chair of COST Action


Milena Chimienti, David Ingleby and Sandro Cattacin

IS1103, ‘Adapting European health systems to diversity’. Before moving to the Netherlands in 1982 he worked for the Medical Research Council in Cambridge and London, as well as lecturing at Cambridge University. In 2007 he was Willy Brandt Memorial Professor at the School of International Migration and Ethnic Relations, Malmö University. He has been involved in many Europe-wide collaborative projects on the health of migrants, refugees and mental health, and the challenge of diversity for health systems. Sandro Cattacin is a professor in the Sociology Department of the University of Geneva. His main research interest is the relation between organised civil society and institutional actors. He has published extensively on topics like corporatism, representation of civil society organisations in politics and comparative welfare system analysis. Among his concrete fields of analysis are the urban context and health and social institutions.

12 Religion Valérie Amiraux

Summary This chapter illustrates some of the various ways in which the presence of migrants from diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds has contributed to redesigning the European religious landscape. Religious diversity has been a factor in (re)igniting public discussion on the accepted regimes of secularism in most of the EU member states. With a special emphasis on specific demands made by religious minorities (Sikhs, Muslims) and in some contexts on controversies related to their requests for accommodation (burials, foods, schedules), this chapter elaborates on the limits of secular governance in terms of dealing with the growing religious diversity in the EU. Keywords: religion, minority, pluralism, recognition, Islam.

Introduction Conflicts over the legitimacy of certain forms of expressing one’s religious belonging within secular states are at the centre of debates about modern democracies and about the future of liberal-democratic cultures in most EU member states. The landscape of religious diversity has been cultivated through a series of public discussions over a variety of issues, such as controversies over editorial comics and notions of blasphemy, questions of family law and polygamy, new religious movements, cults, opposition to minarets, discussions about the headscarf and legislative projects to ban the wearing of burqas in public spaces. The sensitivity of European public opinion vis-à-vis religion is revealed to be particularly acute when said religion is associated with specific minorities, and more largely with general issues of ethnic diversity and pluralism. Until the mid-1980s, religion remained a rather marginal issue in migration studies, an insignificant variable in the understanding of the ‘why and how’, the ‘push and pull’ of migrant settlements in Europe. Over the last three decades however – roughly since the mid-1980s – the study of religious differences has become one of the hottest angles through

Legitimise religious belongings


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which to examine European diversity. What still consists of a mostly policy-driven approach has also become, though relatively lately, a central topic on the research agenda. To make a long story short: religion seems to have become a principal point of contention in Europe when it pertains to those specific forms of religiosity evinced by people with migrant backgrounds, despite the fact that most of them are European citizens. Addressing the question of European religious diversity frequently comes part and parcel with normative prescriptions about how modern citizens should engage with religious otherness and how modern liberal states should accommodate religious needs. It also signals a rather tacit discussion about the religious identity of the EU, in particular in the post-Maastricht era. More specifically, the mere fact of religious pluralism comes encoded with normative expectations towards members of religious minorities, who are perceived as posing a challenge or even a threat to democracy and its associated fundamental rights, as well as to the national identities of EU member states. Now, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, the question of minority religions in Europe is among the most contentious on national political agendas. Religious pluralism, as a central and incontrovertible condition of modern global realities (Bender 2007) and an indisputable feature of modern societies (Dobbelaere & Riis 2002), entails two dimensions. First, from a descriptive and external perspective, different faiths coexist in a national society. It is indeed an observable phenomenon that the EU is becoming more diverse from a religious point of view and not exclusively as a consequence of migration. Second, from an internal perspective, different degrees of intensity of faith coexist within any single community of believers (Beckford 2003). This chapter is a socio-anthropological contribution aiming to illustrate the various ways in which the presence of migrants from diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds has contributed to re-open public discussion of the accepted regimes of secularism in most EU member states. It deals mainly with the sociological aspects of immigrant religious practice and does not address governance issues. Neither does it offer a theological reading of the effect of religious pluralism on European communities of belief. Should the religious belonging of migrants be considered a source of conflict, as a form of isolation and ghettoisation, or as a bridge to the host society? If religion is a private matter in secular Europe, why are national states intervening more than ever to define and control its changing boundaries? With a special emphasis on the demands made by some of the religious minorities and, in some contexts, on the controversies related to their requests for accommodation, this chapter elaborates on the limits of secular governance for dealing with growing religious pluralism in the EU. Discussing religion in concordance with notions of incorporation and ethnic diversity imposes a structure whereby the first section of this chapter emphasises the shared European historical experience of religious



pluralism. This has resulted in a contemporary dissensus on the matter of religion’s public place in the political and social life of European nationstates. What is the meaning of secularism in such a context? How are religion and religious belongings conceptualised in the various EU member states? Answering these questions requires clarification of some different national traditions and of the specific terminologies used when addressing ‘religious issues’. The argument rests on the central assumption that secularism and the related privatisation of cultural issues in EU member states’ citizenry have been challenged in many respects by the incorporation of new religions into the institutional EU landscape of faith. After the groundwork has been established, this chapter’s second section turns to the way European contexts have been dealing with the public manifestations of individual religion, involving negotiations with the surrounding societies and, more specifically, inviting national states to take part in the discussions.

A historical perspective on European religious pluralism and secularism The web portal of the EU includes a section on symbols that describes the meaning of the ‘United in Diversity’ motto. That motto, it says signifies how Europeans come together in the EU ‘to work for peace and prosperity, while... being enriched by the continent’s many different cultures, traditions and languages’.1 Though religion is not specifically listed as one of the enriching assets, the EU’s religious diversity has become both common knowledge and a regular experience for all those who live there. Religion has become the metonymical feature to understand the differences embodied by migrants and their descendants, in particular Muslims. Divergent representations of the truth (i.e., religious pluralism) do indeed coexist in European plural societies. Dealing with religion in Europe: History matters In Europe, religion is mostly a national subject, not an EU matter, the first explanation of this being historical. More precisely, the way each EU member state deals with religion is a matter of national consensus. There is no Community policy regarding religion in Europe, even though the case law coming through the European Court of Human Rights is starting to draw increasingly precise boundaries with regards to the public presence of religious diversity. Though national authority is given primacy in tackling 1 (accessed 7 March 2014).

National consensus


Recognition, partnership and separation

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any problems related to ­religious d ­ iversity, this does not mean that each national context is immune to the influence of the other contexts. Indeed, when dealing with the definition of national secularism, there is more and more porosity between contexts (Foblets & Bosset 2009). Therefore, existing national institutional arrangements prevail over European perspectives when dealing with religions from non-European contexts, especially when they happen to be of newcomers. The plethora of literature dealing with the various institutional models for Church-State relations suggests three main principles of classification: recognition, partnership and separation. The depoliticisation of religious differences that is constitutive of European modern history leads to the adoption of a rather liberal solution to religious conflicts: choosing to relegate religion to the private sphere. In the EU, strict separationist regimes (such as those in France, Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands) coexist with nationally established state churches (in the UK, Finland, Norway, Greece and Denmark) and with institutionally stabilised partnerships between churches and states, that is, concordat types (as in Italy, Germany, Spain and Portugal). In the last category, religious institutions continue to play a public and political role, with cooperation between churches and state being the rule. Insisting on the variety of national historical paths to manage the public presence of religion is of crucial significance for understanding the context of reception for new religious traditions, but also to better understand the cross-national variations in state accommodation policies (Tatari 2009). Indeed, for those members of minority religions settling in the EU as a result of work migration, the path to follow has already been set up by those who came before. The process of the ‘churchification’ of Islam in Europe is a good illustration of this. Notwithstanding the absence of a central Church-like institution in Islam, Muslims have been asked to create such institutions in all the European countries where they have settled, following a Christian pattern of organisation, so that public authorities might know with whom to talk. Sometimes this results in a positive outcome, as in the UK, where the Blasphemy Law that protected only the Church of England was abolished on 5 March 2008 and ‘replaced’ by more encompassing legislation protecting all individuals – both the faithful and those without faith alike – against religious hatred. Depending on the country, the concretisation of specific forms of agreement between religious and political authorities gives either more or less space to the expression of religious differences in the public sphere. Pluralism beyond Christianity has only recently become an institutional point in the Italian context with the reform of the Concordate in 1984, officially recognising the presence of multiple denominations on Italian soil; and in the Netherlands, with the 1983 extension of the constitutional protection of freedom of religion to all confessions. Religious pluralism and the development of the idea of tolerance for minority religions have together been a primarily Christian experience in



Europe, first arising from the parallel and conflicting trajectories of Protestantism and Catholicism, then extending to Orthodoxism (Zagorin 2003). The latter is often left implicit, if not altogether forgotten in the discussion on European identity, while the East-West divide embodies one of the oldest divisions in Europe and remains a major marker, not only in terms of geography but also in terms of culture and civilization (Fokas 2000). The ‘civilizational matrix’ that shapes Christian Europe implies that Catholic and Protestant European countries have incorporated a specific and parallel ‘encoding process’ of religious values (Hervieu-Léger 2003). This encoding, however, takes on different forms that can be traced through the diverse styles of political life, the contents of public debates on ethical issues and also through institutional arrangements or symbolic structures that still incorporate some of this historical weight, for instance, as in the case of public holidays. The diversity of the available labels and vocabularies for talking about religion (faith, cult, worship, confession, denomination, religious society and community, etc.) influences the way in which newcomers eventually find their place and stake their claims in the larger scheme. This includes, for instance, dietary restrictions, clothing, the building of places of worship, holidays, recognition of religious authorities (clergy, chaplains) and religious instruction. When looking at the articulation nexus between migration and religious diversity in Europe, the national frame remains central to understanding the variety of regimes that regulate the public presence of religion. History does indeed matter. Though the religious distribution has changed in Europe, with religious pluralism having intensified following different waves of migration and bringing new minorities to the landscape, the public policies put in place to manage this diversity have remained largely unchanged. This, in turn has led to the development of different political cultures and the distinctive linguistic terms with which religion is referred. So far, there is no Europe-wide policy for dealing with religion.

Encoding process

Nationally defined secularism and nationally bound religiosity Part two of the explanation for the nationally driven policies has to do with the heterogeneity of the national conceptions of secularism. There are trends that remain constant throughout the EU member states, such as the decline of the authority and power of religious institutions in public life (the institutional and socio-structural dimension) and the decline of individual religious practices. The distinction between ‘assertive secularism’ and ‘passive secularism’ provided by Kuru (2009) is a useful one, as it underlines the ideological dimension and helps to typologise the various European models of secularism. Secularisation therefore refers to the process whereby religious thinking, practice and institutions lose their political but not their social significance. Secularisation does not, for instance,

Heterogeneous national conceptions


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preclude the existence of a national church, as in England. In France, secularisation is mostly the result of a regulation imposed by the state, based on an explicit conflict with Catholicism since its inception. These secular traditions are important as they impose specific cognitive frames on the religions of others to the extent that they define and design the political opportunities for some of them. This is, for instance, the case of Muslims in France where ‘because of the rigidity of laïcité, collective projects and state-directed political participation are primarily about religious recognition’, with contestation and political fractures within the field of Muslim middle-class politics (Parvez 2013: 208). There are three forms of secularism that can be distinguished. In the first form, the state’s neutrality means either the absence of support for a religion, or an equal support for all religions. A second model of secularism embodies a group of values that is promoted by the state. A third and last form identifies specific values with a proper culture that is considered as definitive of the national community (Laborde 2002: 175). In the paradigm of secularisation, which refers to the process through which the influence of religion over a society becomes less significant, the fact of belonging to a religion becomes mainly voluntary, with this possibility of choice even enjoying protection through a set of constitutional fundamental rights (freedom of conscience). The cultural pluralisation of societies meshes well with the notion of choosing one’s identification: for migrants, the social surroundings do not operate as a producer of commonly shared values, but rather become a frame of possibility through which multiple ways of being a believer and a member of a community can be chosen and lived. This does not mean, however, that the reference group, that is, the community of believers that one belongs to, loses its power and authority over the individual. Social control remains quite real, even if it is not supported by the larger social context. Cultural and religious pluralism fit into the larger idea of positive freedom and the fundamental right to choose (to believe or not to believe). Modernised European societies are based on the principle of engaging autonomous individuals through citizenship and an individual commitment to respecting specific rules. ‘The citizens of a modern, industrial, bureaucratic, democratic Europe are supposed to relate to society as autonomous, responsible, reflective entities’ (Halman & Riis 2003: 1). In the study of religious diversity, the level or intensity of religious practice has become one way to tackle the concrete dimension of the secularisation process. Indeed, religious observance is an unshared practice at the European level. Secularisation often also goes together with the privatisation of beliefs (Halman & Riis 2003). In this general context, religion is supposed to have a diminishing influence on society, with the authority of the church being increasingly being confined to the internal lives of religious communities. Churches have



thus been demoted through both the emergence of religious pluralism and the issue of choice: there is more competition between worldviews, which leads to the relativisation of specific truths, and membership increasingly becomes something taken up on a voluntary basis. Church involvement and distance towards religion are commonly measured by counting specific religious practices to illustrate the decline in traditional institutional religiosity. The 1999/2000 European Values Study (EVS) shows that in some contexts, like in Italy, people’s religious feelings are stronger today than in 1981.2 French people are the least religious in Europe, and France is the laxest country in terms of civic morality.3 In all these comparisons, religion is considered a dependent variable; dependent, that is, upon the social and economic evolution of society. Traditionally, this diminishing impact of religion on social behaviour is perceived as relating to other modernisation processes, such as the structural differentiation of institutions. In parallel, the idea of a detachment, a distance from religious institutions, goes together with a home-grown approach to religious matters, which encourages individualisation. In discussing the secularisation paradigm, it is often argued that the declining impact of religious beliefs is most obvious in the public sphere and far less evident in matters relating to the private: European citizens are supposed to relate to society as autonomous, responsible, reflective entities (Halman & Pettersson 2003). Individual morality has become a personal concern and personal religiosity no longer means regular church attendance. The importance believers give to their religion varies according to ethnicity and religious affiliation. The 2001 Home Office Citizenship Survey showed the differences between different ethnic and religious groups: 17 per cent of whites say religion is important, compared to 44 per cent of blacks and 61 per cent of Asians; Jews say religion comes first, before family, while Muslims, Sikhs and Hindus say it comes second, behind family; Christians say it comes seventh; Buddhists place it third, after work and family (O’Beirne 2004). 2


The European Values Study (EVS) is a large-scale, cross-national and longitudinal survey of moral, religious, political and social values. The survey was designed to investigate the nature and inter-relationships of different value systems, their degree of homogeneity, and the extent to which they are subject to change across time. To date there have been 4 waves, the first carried out in 1981, the second in 1990, the third in 1999 and the fourth in 2008. The European Values Study project was designed to empirically explore the patterns and changes in cross-national differences and similarities in basic social values in Europe. An important goal was to examine whether the emerging concept of one common European cultural identity has an empirical basis. Public morality refers to behaviours defined by the law as an offence or crime. In the EVS, it concerns items like taking free rides on public transport, tax fraud, claiming state benefits illegally, buying stolen goods, etc.

Individual morality


Demographic change

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In the EU, religious diversity is not a new issue as such. The role of religion, both in its institutional existence as well as the part played by religious feelings, practices and dogmas in social cohesion or in potential conflicts within communities and societies was a core question in the social sciences, particularly for sociology, long before it became relevant to migration studies. Immigration is a demographic factor that began to impact the composition of national societies long before the Second World War (Moch 2003). Contrary to the way the issue is often framed, the religious diversification of European societies is not a dramatically new phenomenon, but is rather something that accelerated during the 1970s in relation to a demographic change of the migrant population and the new visibility of claims related to religion and transplanted from the countries of origin to the countries of settlement (Bastenier & Dassetto 1993). The settlement and reunification of migrant families in Europe during the 1980s and 1990s, in particular, posed new questions, especially in relation to the education of children, the conditions of practising one’s religion and the right to do so. The religiosity of the migrant population and the visibility of certain signs (mosques, headscarves) have brought questions back to the research and political agendas that were thought to have already been sorted out. But the EU experience of religious diversity should not be restricted to that, just as it would be a mistake to look at the link between religion and diversity in European countries as a pure post-migration result. Religious diversity, seen nowadays as a problem in Europe, embodies one of the many identity-related dimensions of a growing social complexity. It is a much less controversial issue in the USA.4 The ‘religious question’ lies at the heart of the respective national traditions of integration and their associated public policies. Indeed, beyond the recognition of freedom of religion and conscience (that is, the freedom to believe in a specific message or to believe in nothing at all) as central pillars of national democratic constitutions,5 the way the claims of religious minorities are perceived and accommodated by public authorities are essential to integration policies for migrants and their children. This has become, over the last two decades, but more intensively since 2001, an issue of shared controversy across Europe, abruptly confronting national public arenas 4


‘The study of religion among the latest newcomers has generally taken a backseat to other topics in the immigration field. Issues pertaining to economic and labor market incorporation, residential patterns, education, social mobility and the trajectories of the second generation, race and ethnicity, transnational ties, and citizenship and political incorporation have received much more attention than religion’ (Foner & Alba 2008: 360). Most of the European constitutions gave such provisions. At the European level, it is protected by Article 9 of the European Convention of Human Rights.



with their capacity to deal with the growing religious diversity of their populations and the visibility of the related claims. The negotiations with the surrounding society (the state) mostly concern public manifestations of religious belonging. Juridically, this topic has now entered the courts, both nationally and at the European level, mostly in terms of discussions on the conciliation between the individual right to religious freedom and respect for non-discriminatory provisions. A growing discussion in Europe, for instance, focuses on whether or not to recognise the legitimacy of religious courts in solving certain family conflicts (on divorce, see Fournier 2013). Socially, the discussion is important as this question of legitimate arbitration is considered one of the pillars of a dynamic culturalisation of differences, contributing to the stigmatisation of certain groups of migrants and even intensification of specific forms of racism (anti-Semitism, Islamophobia), that is, a hostility grounded in culture (religion) rather than in biology (race). A problem of definition A third dimension of the explanation of why discussions on religion are essentially national is more epistemological in nature, touching upon the problem of defining religion (Amiraux 2012). In the European discussions regarding religious diversity, the argument was based less on the ‘system of beliefs and practices oriented toward the sacred or supernatural, through which the life experience of groups of people are given meaning and direction’ (Smith 1996: 5) and more on the threat to secular order that religion’s public face represents for European secularised societies. The latter understanding has inevitably led to a proliferation of literature on the institutional presence of various religious dogmas in the European context. The former would have required the deployment of ethnographic perspectives on lived religion in order to make sense of the various ways in which individuals cope with religion in their daily activities (Bender 2003). In the present chapter, belief is the term we have chosen to refer to this phenomenon, as it encompasses a wide spectrum of differing worldviews and ways of performing them.6 This does not, however, solve the issue of defining religion (Lamine 2010). Indeed, religions are complex cultural and historical variables, made up of social and cultural interpretative systems, and acted out by com6

For instance, talking about Muslims in Europe, belief includes the complex perspective in which ‘For some immigrants, Islam may be primarily a cultural marker, a symbolic locus of identity that has little bearing on the norms that guide their actions in public and private life. For others, the commitment to Islam is at the centre, guiding every activity and choice. For many, it is something in between.’ (Carens 2000: 142)



Ways of living

Valérie Amiraux

munities that produce meaning through practice. Defining religion is thus an extremely delicate undertaking.7 Religions are about belief and faith, practices and rituals that create a link with the sacred. They are about individuals and also about communities. Religions do not simply represent a range of ideas and opinions, rather, they manifest themselves as a way of living according to the requirements of one’s beliefs. Last but not least, religion refers to diverging ideas about the right way in which to live (Peter Berger speaks of ‘plausibility structures’). Believers perform their religion according to religious rules and convictions in daily life. The terminology that is used to speak publicly about religion (denomination, faith, religious community or society and worship) remains something that is nationally defined and distinct within each of the EU member states. Benhabib makes an important distinction between the observers, who are the authors of the narratives, and the social agents, who are the participants in the culture, who actually experience the traditions, stories, rituals, symbols, tools, etcetera, and who do not perceive these narrative accounts as one compact whole but rather as horizons. For example, she elaborates on the Hindu practice of sati, according to which a widowed wife immolates herself by ascending the burning funeral pyre of her husband. This rather marginal practice of some few Hindus came to be regarded as a central Indian tradition. The meaning and status of sati as a tradition would have emerged out of negotiations between British colonials and local Indian elites. Benhabib (2002) explains how the colonial administrators, driven by their own moral and civilizational revulsion when confronted with this practice, were equally aware that their outlawing of this practice could lead to political unrest. They thus investigated the status of sati as a ‘religious practice’, trying to find a justification of it in religious scripture. The hypothesis that Hinduism was relating practice to scripture followed the Christian model (by analogy between systems of faith). Unable to identify any scriptural evidence, ‘Religious stories in relation to existing practices were codified, and, above all, discrepancies in local Hindu traditions that varied not only from region to region but between the various castes as well were homogeneized’ (ibid.: 5-6). Later, still in relation to sati, the British administration relied on the historical understanding of tolerance constructed though the experience of religious wars in Europe: if a practice was considered central to believers, some tolerance was to be shown. ‘But if it was not religious but merely cultural, in the sense that members of the same religion felt free to engage in it or not, colonial administrators presumed that it should be less protected from colonial intervention, 7

As a matter of fact, in most of the EU member states, there is no legal definition of what religion is. Internationally, there is no admitted universal definition of religion either. More and more, judges are left with having to define religion on a case-by-case process.



especially if the practice in question could also be considered odious or offensive to human dignity’ (ibid.: 12). The concrete knowledge of Europe’s religious plurality is a challenge in itself, as national censuses including a religious question are quite rare (At Home in Europe/OSF 2009).8 In fact, religious affiliation and nonaffiliation is a difficult social phenomenon to quantify. Different surveys are available (the European Values Survey, the International Social Survey Programme, the European Social Survey),9 but answers are hardly reliable. Therefore the EU faces a lack of data when it comes to precise measurement of numbers and types of believers, not only for purposes of knowledge but also for purposes of policies promoting equality and fighting discrimination. Numbers of Muslims quoted as ‘average data’ are always estimates, for instance. With no religious question in national censuses, ethnic and national origins often work as a proxy for identifying certain minorities, Muslims being the paragons of that trend. Ethnicity here refers to the subjective and objective features of a group, and of membership in a group, defined by descent (Modood 2005: 22). The situation is slightly different when religious groups are categorised as ethnic groups, such as, for instance, Sikhs or Jews in the UK.10 European social surveys provide some of the rare information we do have, including indications about people’s own self-definition regarding religiosity (Bréchon 2007; Dobbelaere & Riis 2002). Christianity and religious belief in general have been declining in EU member states since roughly the 1950s. European Values Surveys (1981, 1990, 1999, 2008) have 8

For a precise list of data on religious identification by member states, see sociological and legal data on the Religions in Europe website, which gives accurate numbers and a list of sources according to the national contexts in the 27 EU countries The UK reintroduced a (voluntary) question on religion in the census in 2001. The 2001 UK census gives the following results for England and Wales: Christians represent 71.6% of the British population; Muslims 2.7% of the population; Hindus 1%; Sikhs 0.6% and Jews 0.5%. The 2011 UK census gives new insights into religious diversity in England and Wales. While the order of the main religious groups by size has not changed in ten years, the number of those claiming to be to be Christian has decreased (59%), while the numbers of both declared Muslims and those claiming no religious affiliation have gone up (to 5% and 25% of the population, respectively). Office for National Statistics, 2011 Census: Key Statistics for England and Wales, 11 December 2012: 7. 9 Respectively at; and 10 The leading decision is Mandla and Anor v. Dowell Lee (1983), in which Sikhs were considered to be an ethnic group because of their distinctive cultural and religious traditions and common ethnic origins (not a racial group as no immutable characteristics). Jews have been considered one ethnic group since Seide v. Gillette (1980).

Religious affiliation


Christian traditions

Valérie Amiraux

helped to document this trend, which has been labelled the ‘un-churching of Europe’, characterised by dwindling religious attendance and prayer (Ashford & Timms 1992). The decline in Christianity’s membership (Lambert 2006) confirms a general European trend towards ‘belonging without believing’ (Davie 2002). The perceived natural tie binding European political cultures to secularism can thus be perceived as corroborated by these institutional and statistical assessments, but it is more accurate to say that Europe is in fact at a turning point for religiosity. Indeed, what was so quick to be considered the irremediable and somehow logical decline of religion in EU societies was slowed, or rather counterbalanced, during the 1990s, at least as far as the relationship to the religious institutions is concerned. Therefore, it can be said that there are now three trends at work in Western Europe, with national variations from one country to the other: exit from religion, a Christian renewal and the pattern of ‘believing without belonging’ (Lambert 2006). European contexts have been classified into three groups (Catholic countries, Protestant countries and mixed countries), with each group showing various levels of religiosity: 75 per cent of European people are religious and rates of religious affiliation are highest in Poland and Italy; France has a high percentage (42 per cent) of non-religious individuals; Austria and the UK are somewhere on the middle of the scale (Religion Monitor 2008).11 It is therefore difficult to render the religious European panorama with precision. Christian tradition still dominates in terms of numbers and overarching frames, but religious diversities, according to denominations (religious belonging) and level of practice, are striking across the countries. The religious European landscape continues to be shaped by Christian traditions even though immigration has contributed to diversification. The difficulty in assessing the meaning of religion for social actors is mostly due to the necessity of distinguishing between practice, membership and conviction.12 In Northern European Protestant countries for instance, religious belonging seems to be linked to cultural and national identification rather than to effective practice. The landscape of European religious pluralism is not only made up of Muslim communities. It includes also in some contexts an increase of the Jewish population (such as in France, after the decolonisation of North Africa) and the rise of evangelical churches. In Belgium, for instance, Pentecostalism is mostly practised by those hailing from sub-Saharan Africa and South America, and considering the central presence of Islam in public discussions, reveals another face of migration 11 12

In Eastern Europe, religiosity is said to be on a sharp rise. This distinction is not always made in other contexts, but European law has for instance incorporated it, with the main distinction in any decision related to religious freedom assessing the difference between forum internum and forum externum.



(Spindler & Lenoble-Bart 2007). The Christian faith is developing largely into a ‘non-Western religion’ (Kwame 1995). Some of the largest congregations in Europe are led by Africans or people of African descent, though just as Muslims can no longer be automatically equated with foreigners (most Muslims living in the EU hold national citizenship), some Africanled churches have European membership and the African label is no longer accurate. Part of the visibility of the African churches is linked to the contrast between the intense parochial life in the newly migrated Christian communities and the European traditional ones. Religious affiliation, for most of these followers, precedes the ethnic one (Ter Haar 1998). The evangelical programmes of these African churches based in Europe provide not only social protection to an often-vulnerable population exposed to hostile environments and people (drug addicts, prostitutes) but also help develop a pro-integration discourse: the civic integration of these believers is the sign of divine grace (Demart 2008).

Divergent models and a common focus: Minority religions Dealing with religion in all of its diversity today means looking at the cultural dimension of how immigrants are incorporated into European nation-states, given that the situation of majority religion is perceived as settled. Somehow, ‘political secularism can no longer be taken for granted but is having to answer its critics; there is a growing understanding that the incorporation of Muslims has become the most important challenge of egalitarian multiculturalism’ (Modood, Zapate-Barrero & Triandafyllidou 2006: 37). The social significance of religion and its participation in the political life of democratic societies indeed is not declining, but it still has no constraining impact on individual citizens: while theories of secularisation had claimed that religion would progressively disappear from public life through the individual emancipation of citizens, the religious part of the political functioning of societies has returned to the domestic agenda by speaking to the issues of national cohesion and unity. The argument that integration fails whenever cultural differences become visible remains a strong one, in particular, if visible identity markers are perceived as inconsistent or incompatible with democracy and equality (Phillips 2007). Differences, mostly religious ones, may be visible and legitimate only within the private sphere: privatisation of difference is a strategy widely employed for the sake of the good functioning of liberal European democracies. Immigrants bring cultural difference into European societies. That difference, when religious, is considered an obstacle to their individual integration. Not all minority religions are equal and not all represent the same challenge within European public opinion. Muslims, as the largest population group coming from non-European migra-

Privatising differences


Outcomes of negotiations

Valérie Amiraux

tion waves, are in most cases at centre stage in public controversies. But the religious diversity of Europe does not begin or end with them. The evolution of the discussion on secularism, politics and religion has pretty much cemented the public perception of the presence of minority religions as a ‘problem’. So far, two types of political answers have emerged in terms of how to treat religious minorities: a politics of indifference and a politics of recognition (Morag 2002). In the first option, religious diversity may be accommodated within the boundaries imposed by the common reference to a state of law. For instance, a state may not care whether someone eats halal food at home, but it probably does care about the conditions in which halal products are manufactured (animal rights, hygiene rules). In that respect, the outcomes of the negotiations with the state are manifold and can end with either the denial of rights or the allocation of rights, though sometimes with conditional acceptance. Ideally, liberal equality should be difference-blind in the sense of adopting a position of neutrality. Taking that position, authors such as Kymlicka, Taylor and Parekh have defended the necessity to recognise the needs and identities of groups (Morag 2002). In the second option, religion can be grounds for exemption and specific treatment (animal slaughtering, the wearing of the turban, Amish exemptions from school), with this rule-and-exemption approach being a consequence of the strategy of privatisation (Barry 2001). In the case of animal slaughter, animal rights activists have played a growing role in settling these issues and publicly raising animal rights awareness. Animal slaughtering for Muslims or Jews can therefore either be allowed by special exemptions (in Denmark and Sweden, kosher butchering is prohibited but the halal way is permitted) or prohibited (as in Switzerland), or sometimes permitted and sometimes prohibited (as in Germany) (Bergeaud-Blackler 2007). Traditionally, multiculturalism theories have been rather uncomfortable with the religious question. A good contrasting situation is offered by comparing Buddhism and Islam. A relevant example is the silence surrounding the visibility of religious signs and practices by Buddhists compared to the intense and passionate nature of the discussion about the headscarf. Why is the former positively connoted in Europe, while the latter is associated with negative perceptions and representations (Liogier 2010)? European representations offer an inverted way to look at both confessions. Asians still make up most of the Buddhist population. Buddhism is perceived as peaceful and associated with ‘noble causes’ (for instance, the Tibetan situation and the Dalai Lama). These specifics stem from the articulation between religion and ethnicity in producing the boundaries of otherness and addressing certain groups of believers as more threatening to national societies. In the case of migrant religious communities, the variable of ‘religious belonging’ is mostly linked to ethnic and national ori-



gins rather than to the choice of one’s faith. For Muslims, who have come to represent the most controversial religious group in Europe, religion and ethnicity (or race) conflate. According to Zolberg and Woon (1999), the emergence of Islam as a focus of debates about immigration is directly linked to the strategic embeddedness of European countries in Christian tradition. In that context, Muslims appear as the most significant – the ultimate – others.13 The diminishing importance of religion, seen as a consequence of societies becoming more rational, has been accompanied by the emergence of different patterns of religious decline in the EU. These should be seen in relation to differences between denominational cultures, which can be represented as a ‘cultural geography’ of the world (the Catholic cultural profile is not the same as a Protestant one). There is no doubt that the Catholic and Protestant cultures have significantly shaped the national cultures that persist in contemporary Europe. Nonetheless, no common Christian identity ever emerged, though Christianity continues to frame politics (Halman & Riis 2003). The current moment is thus one of the emergence of a dual, interrelated process: a repoliticisation of the private religious and moral spheres and a renormativisation of the public economic and political spheres. Religious beliefs have ceased to be a matter of purely personal preference and have once more become the subject of public argument. Concurrently, public matters are being remoralised in politics, and religious authorities intervene in the public sphere of civil society discussions by bringing ethical notions into sensitive debates, such as those on gay marriage, euthanasia, abortion and culture (consider, e.g., the lobbying against certain books and censorship of certain films). Processes of negotiation and their outcomes are clearly dependent and contingent on rules, regulations and citizenship regimes (enacted in principles and practices). History also matters, particularly as the set of colonial power relations still informs social relations in most ex-colonial European nation-states. The paradigm of ‘believing without belonging’ (and vice versa) has become a central feature of the study of modern religiosities in secular contexts (Davie 2002). Secularisation, for a long time the dominant frame for analysing the position of religion in European public spaces, is nowadays tempered by the observation of a certain ‘upswing in the religious realm’ (Pollack 2008). Three models within the sociology of religion have been of particular importance when looking at minority religions. First, the secularisation 13 This seminal article, published some 20 years ago, mapped the nature of the ‘us versus them’ discussion in Europe as compared with the situation in the States: the confrontation between ‘Christian’ Europe and ‘intruding’ Islam corresponds to the dramatic clash between ‘Anglo-American’ and the ‘invading’ Spanish language (Zolberg & Woon 1999).

Cultural geography

Colonial power relations


Pluralism and democracy

Valérie Amiraux

theory considers the effect of modernisation on the vitality and stability of religious communities. Second, the economic market perspective looks at the growing religious pluralism in Europe as something that stimulates competition between various religious providers and so enhances religiosity. Lastly, the individualisation theory views the relationship between church and religiosity as gradually dissolving in modern societies, with the individual becoming more and more emancipated from the authority of religious institutions (Pollack 2008: 169-171). As the declining scope of religious authority is attested to by different surveys, it becomes clear that different secularisation narratives, too, coexist in Europe (Halman & Draulans 2006). There are basically two avenues from which to approach the interaction between religious belonging/identification and the integration trajectories of migrants. The first way insists on the significance of the host’s institutional context, and the second way considers the specificity of the religious or ethnic communities. In Europe, as compared to, for instance, the North American context, the first way has dominated analyses so far, minimising religion’s role in the process. This explains why, in European scholarship, the role of religion in migrants’ trajectories was ‘downplayed’ by academics before the second half of the 1980s. Religion’s role in the incorporation process started to be more accurately studied in the 1990s. From a theoretical perspective, the impulse of the US tradition in migration studies has been decisive, in particular its looking at the impact of citizenship theories and incorporation models on the management of religious differences (Soysal 1994). Most of these works have analysed religious belonging in terms of the rational, functional and strategic uses of ‘religious resources’ (Hirschmann 2004). For instance, with regard to global Pentecostalism, Miller and Yamamori (2007) speak of a ‘progressive Pentecostalism’ that gives its members a certain competitive advantage thanks to social assistance during times of crisis: educational facilities and the development of social connections. Individual charity is articulated in these communities through institutions that foster individual and social change, ranging from relief work and individual charity to systemic and preventative efforts. The ways in which immigrants adapt to the context of settlement follow different paths, which have been explored theoretically (see Bauböck 1996). When it comes to the visible expression of religious belonging, the debate is embedded in a larger discussion on pluralism and democracy. This opens onto the dilemmas of citizenship in contemporary Europe (Benhabib 2002: 147-177) and emphasises the conflicting identities between ‘moral beings’, citizens and the members of an ethical community, while also drawing the limits of national models (on the Dutch case, see Penninx 2006). The role of national models of incorporation has been studied by Connor (2010) to understand the determinants of variation in



immigrant religiosity within the adaptation process. He proposes correlating migrants’ religious outcomes to the level of receptivity with which immigrants are welcomed (from less to more welcoming incorporation models): do the contexts of migration alter migrants’ religious adaptation to the new society? Connor (ibid.) tested this for Muslims using a multilevel modelling approach and data from the 2002, 2004 and 2006 European Social Survey. His quantitative analysis shows a general lack of convergence to the European norm in terms of the migrants’ religiosity: religion remained salient for migrants, whatever context they settled into. Moreover, ‘levels of immigrant receptivity seem to correspond to a reactive effect where religious resilience actually deepens’ (ibid.: 294). Here the contrast with the USA is significant. In Europe, religion is less an avenue for incorporation than it may be in the USA (Foner & Alba, 2008), for ‘[j]ust as many immigrants come to learn that they are “ethnic” in the United States, a significant share of immigrants also “become American” through participation in the religious and community activities of churches and temples’ (Hirschman 2004: 1207). The contextual impact of host societies on the way in which public religion is lived has to be taken into consideration, since the interaction between contexts and religious practices interferes at various levels. General social and political attitudes should therefore not be confused with more individual dynamics. We should also add that an important distinction has to be drawn between what happens at a national level and local processes, which are characterised by a stronger pragmatic emphasis, as shown in many European reports published over the past two decades (Fekete, Bouteldja & Mühe 2010). In the EU member states the study of religion among migrants has moved to the top of the research agenda, though the urgency is far greater when it concerns the study of Muslims and Islam (Buijs & Rath 2006). At the same time, official policy has shifted away from encouraging the assimilation of such minorities and towards a pluralist approach, in which integration as a goal is approached through promotion of equal opportunity and cultural diversity and the fostering of an atmosphere of mutual tolerance between the majority and the minorities. This move from equality as sameness to equality as difference has accentuated the tension in the pluralist ideal between, on the one hand, the need for equal opportunity and, on the other, the wish to recognise cultural diversity. The networks of migration that have developed between Africa and Europe have been studied as a space controlled mostly by religious networks (churches and related authorities) since the settling of the first groups of African migrants. The study of African Christians in Europe offers different patterns than those from the study of Muslim migrants, though the former remain, despite some growth, rather marginal in the European discussion on religious pluralism and migration. The establishment of African Pentecostalist churches is not a recent phenomenon, as they date back

Mutual tolerance


Context of tension

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to the 1920s and 1930s in the home countries.14 In the European contexts of settlement, where they landed in the 1980s, these African churches neither underwent a process of re-enchantment, nor did they seem to use religion as a means of preserving an ‘authentic’ African identity (Ter Haar 2008). Rather, they appear to locate their activities and projects in a transnational horizon, on which the territories of settlement have no particular significance but are mere matters of convenience. In their evangelisation programme, the religious identity (the religious nation) has priority over the ethnic one. Coming first from English-speaking African countries, the churches settled first in England (1987) and the Netherlands (1990), until the latter’s change in migration laws made it more difficult for Ghanaian and Nigerians to enter, which led to these churches’ establishment in France and Belgium. The Pentecostal Church of Ghana, which is both an ‘indigenous’ and a transnational church, is today present in 15 EU countries. Historically, it was made up of Ghanaian migrants. Recently, it has involved itself in the evangelisation and ‘re-Christianisation’ of white Europeans. Exactly as with Muslims, these religious groups address communities of migrants with specific responses in a context of tension between the need for identity and the need to integrate socially within local European societies (Fancello 2008, 2009). These dynamics were apparent in the migration of people from Congo or Ivory Coast and the transplanting of their churches to France and Germany. In the case of Kimbanguism (an African-initiated church), students who migrated from Congo to France first created an international student circle in 1975 that later expanded into other countries such as Belgium, Switzerland and the UK, mostly because the local Catholic and Protestant churches were unfamiliar with their religious traditions and liturgical gestures, and were therefore not satisfactory for the liturgical needs of the community. The places of worship and the weekly Sunday service became central nodes of networking to satisfy both the religious and the wider social needs of church members (Mokoko-Gampiot 2008). Kimbangui communities have not become engaged in local political life as yet. But other African communities of believers offer different insights into the link between religious identification and citizenship, given that their allegiance to the ‘biblical nation’ supersedes their European citizenships (Demart 2008). African churches may play an active role in structuring the life of the migrant from a practical point of view, providing not only moral but also logistical support, such as help in obtaining regular documents, arranging weddings or finding a job. For most analysts of these specific African Christian groups, the intensification of the religious organisation of the


Ter Haar (1998) develops a typology of the various components of the African churches settled in Europe.



community echoes policies producing segregation rather than incorporation of minorities. Most African churches use African languages for their liturgies, thus maintaining a clear separation between the communities within and the society without. Other religious migrant populations also benefit from the support of existing religious networks. For Filipino communities, the church provides networks that help to expand opportunities for business and employment. These are particularly in use for housekeeping jobs (the most notorious countries for this type of worker recruitment are Spain and Italy) and ethnic businesses (i.e., businesses created by the ethnic community for the ethnic community), many of which can be found in France and the Netherlands (Maas 2002, 2004). In both sectors of activity, the Catholic Church and related institutions play a major role, not only by facilitating meetings with fellow nationals but also by extending social networks beyond the ethnic communities, which is crucial to economic success. Flot-Fresnoza and Pécoud (2007) look at the role of the Filipino Chaplaincy in Paris and of Sunday worship in a specific church, Saint Bernadette, located in a wealthy part of the city. Filipino entrepreneurs used these collective gatherings as occasions to publicise their activities and they provided job seekers opportunities to meet with potential local employers. In Italy, trust is the main element sustaining the informal job market for undeclared or blackmarket employment of new migrants. There, churches and religious NGOs are central actors in the elderly care sector (Lamura & Melchiore 2008: 90). As a consequence of this efficient articulation between religious organisations and an elderly care job market, the work of the badante (providing help to seniors living in hospitals or specific institutions) is no longer the sole purview of older Italian women (Trifiletti 2005: 152). Nowadays, the migrant workers live at home with the seniors they care for, assisting them around the clock with medical care, house cleaning and food shopping. In the 1980s, this type of care was almost entirely managed and controlled by the upper-class families in need of such help, and was to some extent restricted to them as well. The first migrants to take these jobs hailed from Somalia, the Horn of Africa, Cape Verde and Peru. In the 1990s, Catholic organisations helped these migrants negotiate the administrative process to obtain documents to migrate to Italy. Their role was certainly decisive in increasing the number of migrants originating from the Philippines. Contexts are particularly significant when looking at how the religious diversity resulting from immigration has been thematised in domestic politics (Carens 2000). The institutional framework, in particular the rights of religious minorities and the nature of the tie-binding (or not) by states and churches, may explain variation in the trust (or not) of certain religious groups in the government. Measured by rates of satisfaction with government performance and political efficacy, British Muslims are more likely than British Christians to have high levels of trust in government (Maxwell

Religious networks



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2010). Assessing the importance of migration status for political attitude, Maxwell (ibid.) suggests that migrants, especially those recently settled, hold a rather positive view of what European contexts have to offer. This was recently illustrated by a study of the attitudes of Muslim populations towards their local neighbourhoods in eleven European cities (At Home in Europe/OSF 2009). The role of activism in the development of civic competence and skills has yet to be properly investigated. Religious associative networks (e.g., for volunteering and social work) are factors that are rarely included in studies of participation of migrants or children of migrants in NGO activism in Europe. The European way of looking at the religiosity of migrants remains mostly a negative one. It is certainly less open than in the USA, where for instance, religion’s role in meeting immigrants’ needs is clearly highlighted (Foley & Hoge 2007; Portes & Rumbaut 2006). In North America, religion is cited as providing migrants with an alternative source of respectability in a context where they are mostly denied recognition (Foner & Alba 2008). An instrumental reading of religion as a ‘resource provider’ from a utilitarian perspective seems to be operating here: good believers offer multiple services to their own communities, providing people with social and economic assistance (Hirschmann 2004). But again, the level of tolerance vis-à-vis the religiosity of migrants is not identical from one country to the next. This is related to the specific national histories of religion and politics. Muslims have become the central example in Europe in talk about the limits of tolerance towards religious otherness, or ‘the limits for political integration’ (Joppke 2009). Even though most Muslims living in Europe are EU citizens (Allievi et al. 2003), the public perception of Islam as a social and security issue remains tied to the topic of Islam as a migrant issue. Since the 1980s, various public controversies have helped set up the framework for reading Muslims as problem citizens, from the 1989 headscarf discussions and the Salman Rushdie affair, to the media concern about ‘burqinis’ in Italian swimming pools and on French beaches. The New York, London and Madrid bombings also contributed to move the ‘Muslim problem’ to the security agenda, with particular attention paid to the spectre of homegrown terrorists and their threat to national cohesion. An undercurrent of terrorism and violence can be read in the inability of Western European governments to properly integrate their Muslim populations.15 After 9/11, a dual-track effect unfolded. On one track, a greater space opened up for public discourse on Islam and Muslims living in Europe


In the constitution of European regimes of suspicion and intolerance towards Muslims and their practices, post-colonialism has certainly played a role in contexts like the United Kingdom and France (Amiraux 2010).



(mostly by political authorities speaking about the ‘good’ Muslims living in Europe to distinguish them from the ‘bad’ Muslims perpetrating terrorism). An example of this was the swift creation after 9/11 of the French Council of Muslim Worship (Conseil Français du Culte Musulman). Though the process had been slow and chaotic for 15 years, suddenly, the Minister of Interior, Nicolas Sarkozy, accelerated the implementation, referring to 9/11 as the main reason. On the other track, almost all places where dialogue between Muslims and non-Muslims had taken place, most local, were shut down in the name of security concerns, and far more explicit expressions of hostility towards Muslims – all of whom became potential dangers, so-called ‘sleepers’ – entered into the public discourse (Allen & Nielsen 2002). A good illustration of this second effect is Germany’s restriction of association rights to limit, by law, the possibility for religious groups to create proper religious communities (Hirsch 2002; Schiffauer 2006). Such global narratives shaped the emergence of a series of dichotomies framing Muslims in black and white terms such as ‘good’ versus ‘bad’, ‘loyal’ versus ‘disloyal’, playing particularly on the distinction between ‘our Muslims’ versus Muslim ‘others’ (Werbner 2004: 460). The implicit link between migration and religion and the emergence of an unspoken preference for certain groups of migrants was manifest in, for instance, the implementation of citizenship tests in the Netherlands and the Muslim tests in Germany. Both tested the capacity of Muslim populations to fit in with European values using questions about, for example, same sex couples and respondents’ possible reactions to them while living within liberal democracies. Tolerance for same sex couples thus became a measure for candidates readiness for citizenship. This form of cultural and moral suspicion (all Muslims are hostile to homosexuality) fuels concrete practices of discrimination in multiple areas of social life, including employment, education, housing and health. Whatever the prevailing national model of accommodation (integration, assimilation or multiculturalism), all EU countries have seen an intensification of racism and discrimination against Muslims over the last decade (Amiraux 2007). This specific scrutiny of Muslims in Europe has been nourished by a ‘politics of the veil’, that recently turned into to a ‘politics of the burka’ in France, the Netherlands and Belgium. Perceptions of the Islamic headscarf are central to contemporary European concerns about Muslim women as the quintessential embodiment of the cultural otherness associated with Islam.16 In France, the argument that state schools should be protective of

16 The broader discussion about the need to ‘save’ covered Muslim women began in the 1990s and has been explicitly discussed in post-colonial anthropology (Abu Lughod 2002).

Framing Muslims


Racialisation process

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Muslim pupils is founded on the concept of secularism, which aims to safeguard religious freedom by ensuring that state institutions are as strictly neutral as possible regarding religious allegiance (Lyon & Spini 2004). The complete ban on religious symbols, which is specifically but not exclusively aimed at the hijab, has been defended on the grounds that it offers Muslim pupils a way of extracting themselves from the religious pressure emanating from their own communities (Benhabib 2002). The liberating potential of the secular public sphere is therefore seen as a corrective for the oppression of Muslim girls and women in the private sphere, prompting Lyon and Spini (2004: 342) to observe that this amounts to the substitution of one form of patriarchy for another. Such ‘Western patriarchal feminism’ (Benhabib 2002: 101) appears to assume that given free choice, Muslim women would reject the headscarf (Carens 2000: 159). Ironically, research suggests that some Muslim women in France consciously wear the hijab as a form of resistance against the dominant cultural values, including the principle of secularism (Killian 2003). The debate surrounding the headscarf tends to touch upon numerous broader issues: the challenge to and of multiculturalism, the validity of secularism as a way of organising the peaceful co-existence of different religions in European contexts, the securitisation of cultural markers and increasing Islamophobia, and the loyalty of Muslim European citizens (converts or not) because of their alleged essential differences and ‘otherness’ (Amiraux 2012a, 2012b). Last but not least, the controversies over the headscarf reawaken the very old conflicts about the necessary separation of church and state. In the specific case of Muslims, it is nevertheless also embedded in a racialisation process that makes the debates increasingly sensitive in all European contexts.

Conclusion: Does secularism do justice to the new European religious realities? Is the secular state fair to religious minorities? Can secularism do justice to religious diversity? In secularised Europe, the visibility of minority religions raises the question of how to encourage civic integration and participation without compromising religious identities. As for everything related to religion, religious belonging and religiosity, it is essential to distinguish between levels: the individual and micro, the intermediate associative/institutional, and the wider social level. Regarding the intensification of public debate about the visibility of specific minority groups, one of the unsolved questions remains how to distinguish between culture and religion (Roy 2010). Religion is a complex category for many people. It is not their dominant identity ‘but is subtly interleaved with nationality, ethnicity, class, generation, kinship, gender and sexual orientation’ (Aldridge



2007: 29).17 Still, the way everyday religions or everyday secularities operate in the modern world remains a largely uncovered theme (Ammerman 2007). In culturally plural societies, that is, in societies where different truths are embodied by citizens’ religious practices and beliefs, the fight against discrimination and the protection of fundamental rights appear as central elements of the organisation of a more peaceful coexistence between competing interpretative systems (as in the case of religions) or conflicting values (as in neutrality of the state versus individual freedom of religion – such as embodied by the headscarf controversies in France and Germany). Discussions about religious rights as cultural rights recreate the cleavages of the debate on multiculturalism: those who argue in favour of communalism and differentialism by defending the right to differentiated collective rights as opposed to those who defend collective cultural rights as universal individual rights. The legal governance of religious diversity does not sort out all problems as it mostly stays outside the bounds of the religious sphere. Indeed, judges and courts do not deal with religion per se but rather focus on the institutional and external dimensions of it. This implies a rather restrictive definition of freedom, in which secular public space is not a space where actors can outwardly express the demonstrable fact of their freedom (Chaudhary 2005: 356). Indeed, freedom of conscience is not only about inner contemplation, but has to be performed. Rights can also have an indirect impact on participation, by creating a space for rights discourse and mobilisation, eventually changing access to political and legal institutions and the extent to which new societal groups and their concerns are included in important policy debates. In the religious diversity regulation discussion, one must however note that religious minorities are not yet at the stage of carrying cause. The legal avenues of participation remain mostly individual choices, even when associations support the cause. Another current concern is the extent to which faith should be involved in legal decision-making. A number of countries have addressed this issue; in Ontario, Canada, during the controversy over religious arbitration and more recently in the UK, when a declaration of by archbishop of Canterbury proposed allowing Sharia and Jewish law to be considered in arbitration courts. A situation in which a Muslim religious minority has the 17 Nesbit (2004) studies Punjabis and Sikhs, challenging the easy attribution of labels such as ‘Hindus’ and ‘Sikhs’. Their self-identification is much more nuanced. For example, Jains do not declare themselves Jains but rather Hindus, because most British people do not know what Jains are (ibid.). The same applies to Alevis. A lack of recognition by the authorities made them an excluded community in Germany, but then gave them the possibility to obtain recognition in Europe that helped them to fight back in Turkey (Massicard 2005).



Conflicts of norms

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option of voluntary recourse to such arbitration or court settlement in Europe has been frightening for public opinion, with that fear extending beyond the borders of the countries where it would have been implemented. The anxiety is mostly based on a confusion between what happens in Muslim societies (women being stoned when they are accused of adultery) and what might come out of the judgements of arbitration courts in Europe. The issue of conflicts of norms is never far from these discussions, and European politicians regularly remind us of their opinion on the potential incompatibility between religious and secular systems of norms. Again, it is in court that conflicting claims for recognition may emerge most strikingly. Should the promotion of differences be pursued, or should specific requests by individuals and groups be kept as ‘unpublic’ as possible? Religion can help to keep everything in its place. But it can also turn the world upside down (Smith 1996). The complete privatisation of religion in secular European contexts seems to be a pure illusion, as most of religious groups do not wish to withdraw totally from the world.18 Religious newcomers contribute to open up the debate on whether religion has a role to play in sustaining social cohesion and contributing to European identity. In that respect, the convergence of traditionally opposed models of integration (e.g., Republican versus multicultural) is striking. Statements about European religious diversity and the visibility of religion increasingly overlap with issues of ethnicity, race and cultural otherness. In many cases an overreaction has led to public obsession, with local incidents generating national debate and attracting extensive media coverage. This is manifest in certain migrants’ experiences of discrimination, individual as well as collective.

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Killian, C. (2003), ‘The other side of the veil: North African women in France respond to the headscarf affair’, Gender & Society 17 (4): 567-590. Kuru, Ahmet T. (2009), Secularism and State Policies toward Religion: The United States, France, and Turkey. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Kwame, B. (1995), Christianity in Africa: The Renewal of a Non-Western Religion. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Hervieu-Léger, D. (2004), ‘France’s obsession with the “sectarian threat”’, in Philip Lucas & Thomas Robbins (eds), New Religious Movements in the Twenty-First Century. London: Routledge, 49-60. Hervieu-Léger, D. (2003), ‘Pour une sociologie des “modernités religieuses multiples”: Une autre approche de la “religion invisible” des sociétés Européennes’, Social Compass 50 (3): 287-295. Hirsch, B. (2002), ‘Der attackierte rechtsstaat: Bürgerrechte und “innere sicherheit” nach dem 11 September’, Vorgänge 41 (3): 5-9. Laborde, C. (2002). ‘On Republican toleration’, Constellations 9 (2): 167-183. Lambert, Yves (2006), ‘Trends in religious feeling in Europe and Russia’, Revue Française de Sociologie, 47 (supplement): 99-129. Lamine, A-S. (2010), ‘Les croyances religieuses: Entre raison, symbolisation et expérience’, Année Sociologique 60 (1): 93-114. Lamura, G. & M. Melchiorre (2008), ‘Les travailleurs immigrés dans le secteur de l’aide aux personnes âgées’, Retraite et Société 55 (3): 71-97. Liogier, R. (2010), ‘La distinction sociocognitive et normative entre bonne et mauvaise religion en contexte européen: Les cas de l’islam et du bouddhisme’, in M. Milot, P. Portier & J.-P. Willaime, Le Pluralisme Religieux et la Citoyenneté. Rennes: Rennes University Press, 99-122. Lyon, D. & D. Spini (2004), ‘Unveiling the headscarf debate’, Feminist Legal Studies 12 (3): 333-345. Maas, M. (2004), Filipino Entrepreneurship in the Netherlands: Male and Female Business Activity Compared. GAP Working Paper Series 8 (May). Nijmegen: University of Nijmegen. Maas, M. (2002), ‘Filipinos in the Netherlands: Why aren’t they in business?’ Asian Migrant 15 (1-2): 28-35. Massicard, É. (2005), L’Autre Turquie: Le Mouvement Aléviste et ses Territoires. Paris, Presses Universitaires de France. Maxwell, R. (2010), ‘Trust in government among British muslims: The importance of migration status’, Political Behavior 32: 89-109. Miller, D. & T. Yamamori (2007), Global Pentecostalism: The New Face of Christian Social Engagement. Berkeley: University of California Press. Moch, L. P. (2003), Moving Europeans: Migration in Western Europe since 1650. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Modood, T. (2005), Multicultural Politics: Racism, Ethnicity and Muslims in Britain, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press and University of Edinburgh Press. Modood, T., R. Zapate-Barrero & A. Triandafyllidou (2006), Multiculturalism, Muslims and Citizenship. London: Routledge.


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Mokoko-Gampiot, A. (2008), ‘Les kimbanguistes en Europe: D’une generation à l’autre’, Archives de Sciences Sociales des Religions 143 (3): 111-128. Morag, P. (2002), ‘Rights and recognition: Perspectives on multicultural democracy’, Ethnicities 2 (1): 31-51. Nesbitt, E. (2004), Intercultural Education: Ethnographic and Religious Approaches. Brighton: Sussex Academic Press. O’Beirne, M. (2004), Religion in England and Wales: Findings from the 2001 Home Office Citizenship Survey. Home Office Research Study 274. London: Development and Statistics Directorate. Parvez, F. (2013), ‘Representing “Islam of the banlieues”: Class and political participation among Muslims in France’, in Jorgen Nielsen (ed.), Muslim Political Participation in Europe. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 190-211 Penninx, R. (2006), ‘After the Fortuyn and Van Gogh murders: Is the Dutch integration model in disarray?’ in S. Delorenzi (ed.), Going Places: Neighbourhood, Ethnicity and Social Mobility. London: Institute for Public Policy Research, 127138. Phillips, A. (2007), Multiculturalism without Culture. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Pollack, D. (2008), The Role of Religion in Modern Societies. London: Routledge. Portes, A. & R. G. Rumbaut (2006), Immigrant America: A Portrait. Berkeley: University of California Press. Religion Monitor (2008), Europe: Overview of Religious Attitudes and Practices. Washington, DC & Brussels: Bertelsmann Stiftung. Roy, O. (2010), Holy Ignorance: When Religion and Culture Part Ways. New York: Columbia/Hurst. Ter Haar, Gerrie (2008), ‘Enchantment and identity’, Archives des Sciences Sociales des Religions 53 (143): 31-48. Ter Haar, Gerrie (1998), Halfway to Paradise: African Christians in Europe. South Glamorgan: Cardiff Academic Press. Trifiletti, R. (2005), ‘Le soin aux personnes âgées et les parcours d’intégration des immigrés en Italie’, Retraite et Société 1 (44): 149-173. Saraiva, C. (2008), ‘Transnational migrants and transnational spirits: An African religion in Lisbon’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 34 (2): 253-269. Schiffauer, W. (2006), ‘Verwaltete sicherheit: Präventionspolitik und migration’, in M. Bommes & W. Schiffauer (eds), Migrationsreport 2006. Frankfurt: Campus, 113-164. Smith, C. (ed.) (1996), Disruptive Religion: The Force of Faith in Social Movement Activism. London: Routledge. Soysal, Y. (1994), Limits of Citizenship: Migrants and Postnational Membership in Europe. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Spindler, Marc & Annie Lenoble-Bart (2007), Chrétiens d’Outre-mer en Europe: Un Autre Visage de l’Immigration. Paris: Karthala. Tatari, E. (2009), ‘Theories of the state accommodation of Islamic religious practices in Western Europe’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 35 (2): 271-288.



Trifiletti, R. (2005), ‘Le soin aux personnes âgées et les parcours d’intégration des immigrés en Italie’, Retraite et Société 1 (44): 149-173. Van Tubergen, F. (2006), ‘Religious affiliation and attendances among immigrants in 8 Western countries: Individual and contextual effects’, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 45 (1): 1-22. Werbner, P. (2004), ‘The predicament of diaspora and millennial Islam: Reflections on September 11, 2001’, Ethnicities 4 (4): 451-476. Zagorin, P. (2003), How the Idea of Religious Toleration Came to the West. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Zolberg, Aristide & Litt Woon Long (1999), ‘Why Islam is like Spanish: Cultural incorporation in Europe and the United States’, Politics and Society 27 (1): 5-38.

Key reading Bottici, Chiara & Benoît Challand (2006), ‘Rethinking political myth: The clash of civilizations as a self fulfilling prophecy’, European Journal of Social Theory 9 (3): 315-336. Casanova, José (2012), ‘The politics of nativism: Islam in Europe, Catholicism in the United States’, Philosophy & Social Criticism 38 (4-5): 485-495. Lambert, Yves (2006), ‘Trends in religious feeling in Europe and Russia’, Revue Française de Sociologie 47 (supplement): 99-129. Spohn, Wilfried (2009), ‘Europeanization, religion and collective identities in an enlarging Europe: A multiple modernities perspective’, European Journal of Social Theory 12 (3): 358-374. Zolberg, Aristide & Litt Woon Long (1999), ‘Why Islam is like Spanish: Cultural incorporation in Europe and the United States’, Politics and Society 27 (1): 5-38.

About the author Valérie Amiraux is a professor of sociology at the University of Montreal where she has held the Canada Research Chair for the study of religious pluralism (CRSH) since 2007. Her main fields of research are sociology of religion, comparative politics, Muslim minorities and discrimination. She has published extensively on Muslim minorities in Europe. Her most recent publications include ‘Racialization and the Challenge of Muslim Integration in the European Union’, in Shahram Akbarzadeh (ed.), Handbook of Political Islam, and ‘Religion and Political Sociology’ in A. Scott, E. Amenta & K. Nash (eds), The Wiley-Blackwell Companion of Political Sociology.

13  From Others to Artists? Immigrant and Ethnic Minority Art Wiebke Sievers

Summary Artists have been migrating for many hundreds of years, but they only came to be discussed as migrants in the second half of the past century. This trend was mainly started by the artists themselves, who organised in movements to counter their invisibility in the new countries of residence. Discrimination of these artists in the predominantly white artistic fields, and their own as well as public counter-strategies, has since been a major topic. However, most research has focused on the content of the artistic works, which were first read as representing their origin communities, be they blacks in France or guest workers in Germany. In the course of the 1990s, a second approach evolved that perceives immigrant and ethnic minority artists as a vanguard of cultural change, since they challenge our fixed notions of cultures, nations and ethnicities. Current research is moving beyond separate categorisations for immigrant and ethnic minority artists. Keywords: migration, literature, art, music

Introduction Artists have migrated for centuries. The painter Peter Paul Rubens, who was of Flemish origin and born near Cologne, lived and worked in Antwerp, Madrid and London. The composer Georg-Friedrich Händel, who was born in Halle, spent most of his life in London. The writer Heinrich Heine, who was born in Düsseldorf, fled from censorship to Paris, where he lived for the rest of his life. However, these and many other world-famous artists are rarely discussed as migrants. This can be explained by the fact that art, music and literature studies, which were established at the height of nation-building in the nineteenth century, have mainly looked at art from a national perspective. Only in the second half of the twentieth century did migration become an area regarded as worthy of discussion in these research fields. Initially, the focus was on the experience of exile

Dominating national perspectives


Migration and the arts

Multiple approaches

Wiebke Sievers

among artists who fled National Socialism or Communism. The incorporation of immigrant artists into European societies became an issue only over the last three decades, mainly in response to artists protesting against their exclusion. The current chapter provides an overview of research that can be subsumed under the heading immigrant and ethnic minority art in Europe.1 Offering such an overview is a daunting task for several reasons. First of all, the study of art can be divided into multiple disciplines, each of which deals with a specific area of expression, such as music, literature, visual art, theatre and film. All of these disciplines have their own research traditions, and these significantly influence whether and how immigrant and ethnic minority art has been discussed. Second, the study of art has become more European over the last one or two decades, but the disciplines nevertheless are still divided along national lines. This means that German literature is discussed in German studies, French literature in French studies, et cetera. In addition, immigrant art is not necessarily at the centre of the respective disciplines but is often discussed in subdisciplines, such as ethnomusicology, or in institutes abroad, such as in French and German studies institutes in the USA or UK. These various disciplinary backgrounds have strongly influenced the research done, the categories used and the theories applied, though there has been some convergence in recent years, mainly due to the growing internationalisation of research and, more particularly, the impact of cultural and post-colonial studies. Last, but not least, research on migration and art is one of the fields that have led to a questioning of the concept of art and its delimitation from popular culture. The concept of art that evolved in the modern period in Western cultures has implied the denigration of all non-Western art. This division has also marked the reception of the literary, artistic and musical works produced by immigrants in European countries. The process of their incorporation has involved a reconceptualisation of the understanding of art as such, which includes a blurring of the boundaries between art and popular culture. This explains why this chapter also includes examples traditionally subsumed under the latter heading. For all of these reasons, the current chapter can present only a rough insight into what has been discussed in this wide and diverse field, focusing on ideas that have influenced many scholars across disciplines and national contexts. Moreover, this insight will be biased towards literature, not only because literature is this author’s field of expertise (see Sievers 2012 for a similar overview for the field of literature only), but also because liter1

This chapter does not take into consideration research explicitly focusing on so-called autochthonous ethnic minorities, but may include such works if these also deal with ethnic minorities that have emerged from immigration after the Second World War.

From Others to Artists?


ary studies led the way into this field of research, with the study of visual arts, music and film following (Baily & Collyer 2006: 168; Mercer 2008: 8). This is probably because the latter are already more globally organised than literature, perhaps reducing the impact of migration. Rather than dividing this overview by disciplines and national contexts, the current chapter focuses on three areas that are important for research in the field of art in general: first, access of immigrant and ethnic minority artists to artistic fields; second, the content and style of the works these artists produce; and third, the reception of these works and their wider effects. However, before analysing these specific issues, this chapter discusses the divisive question of whether artists should be categorised as immigrants or members of a specific ethnic minority at all and if so why.

Naming and shaming? Contested conceptualisations There is a famous saying that art knows no borders. This implies that art transcends ethnic and national boundaries and can be recognised and cherished anywhere in the world. If this holds true, why differentiate between native and migrant art (as done in the German-speaking countries) or between black and white art (as is done in the British context)?2 In Europe, such differentiations first emerged when artists from the colonies, who had moved to the metropolis, realised that art did have borders. They suffered from discrimination both in daily life and in the artistic world. To counter this discrimination and increase the visibility of their artistic works, these artists organised in movements, such as the negritude movement of France in the 1930s and black artists’ associations formed as part of the Black Power movement of 1960s Britain. Although established by migrants, these early organisations did not focus on art produced by immigrants, but aimed to increase the visibility of black or Caribbean art in general. Only in the 1980s did the first movements emerge that explicitly 2

There is an abundance of terms coined for art produced by immigrant and ethnic minorities. This search for an appropriate term mirrors the problems of defining this art as a separate category. In the British context, the term black, which was initially used as a political signifier, became loaded with ethnic connotations, when in the late 1980s Asian artists demanded to be discussed under a separate heading (Oliver 1990: 5-9; Procter 2000: 193-194). In the German context, on the other hand, the focus has always been on migration. Like in Britain, terms have evolved towards providing more precise descriptions of the groups discussed, which ranged from guest workers via foreigners to migrants and finally to the distinction by national background, such as Turkish-German artists. Other terms, such as intercultural or diaspora artists, aimed to describe the creative specificity of immigrant and ethnic minority art.

The arts and borders


Expressing identities Overcoming the exclusion of artists

Wiebke Sievers

intended to further literature and art produced by foreigners in specific receiving countries, such as PoliKunst, a polynational artists association founded in Germany in 1980. As in the above cases, the rationale behind this project was not purely artistic, but also political. The founding members hoped to overcome ethnic and national boundaries in a joint fight against the exclusion of foreign workers in Germany. This was also the explicit intention of what the authors themselves called guest-worker literature. Hence, all of the above artists tried to turn their alleged stigma into a signifier of resistance by intentionally describing themselves in terms used to insult them at the time. The first scholars dealing with immigrant and ethnic minority art adopted both these new concepts and the motivations behind them. They aimed to increase the visibility of these art forms, often ignored in traditional research on art and popular culture, since immigrant and ethnic minority art does not fall neatly into national containers. This also included – and sometimes still includes – taking concrete action against their discrimination and exclusion, such as promoting books by providing introductions (Sartre 1948) and initiating specific prizes (such as the Adelbert van Chamisso Prize for literature written by authors whose mother tongue is not German). Hence, categorisations such as ‘black art’ and ‘guest-worker literature’ that many artists today regard as discriminatory first emerged and were used with the opposite intention: to overcome the exclusion of artists in their receiving societies. Initially, this was the main motivation for discussing these works of art under separate labels, to be upheld as long as these power differentials existed (ibid.: 41). This also was the main input of these first approaches whose interpretations of immigrant and ethnic minority art were not particularly innovative. Building on the assumption that art represents and contributes to creating communities – a paradigm governing research in the arts from its beginnings in the nineteenth century– these early critics read immigrant and ethnic minority art as expressing the identities of specific ethnic or national communities. In the course of the 1990s, a new approach to immigrant and ethnic minority art became prominent that questioned this assumed relationship between art and community. Scholars from the fields of post-colonial and cultural studies posited that immigrant and ethnic minority artists were the vanguard of cultural change because they challenged our understanding of culture. While scholars in this group disagree on whether artistic creativity is brought about by the process of migration and/or by living and working in a foreign language and/or by belonging to a minority, they do agree that immigrant and ethnic minority artists do not represent and speak for a particular group, but question any form of group identities. As a forerunner of this line of argument, George Steiner interpreted the success of multilingual writers, such as Samuel Beckett and Vladimir Nabokov, as signalling that ‘[t]he conditions of linguistic stability, of local, national self-

From Others to Artists?


consciousness in which literature flourished between the Renaissance and, say, the 1950s are now under extreme stress’ (Steiner 1972: 17). This view came to dominate the study of immigrant and ethnic minority art in the 1990s particularly due to the influential publications of three researchers from the fields of cultural and post-colonial studies: Homi Bhabha, Paul Gilroy and Kobena Mercer. They argue that immigrant and ethnic minority artists aim to transcend both the structures of the nationstate and the constraints of ethnicity and national particularity (Gilroy 1993: 19) and thereby to redefine ‘the very concepts of homogeneous national cultures’ (Bhabha 2004: 7). In Mercer’s terms, they ‘open up new ways of seeing, and understanding, the peculiarities of living in the twilight of an historic interregnum in which “the old is dying and the new cannot be born”’ (Mercer 1994: 2, citing Gramsci). Hence, these authors no longer regarded immigrant and ethnic minority artists as having to defend themselves and their communities against a majority, but as the agents of general change. They raise the awareness of the fact that identities are always in a state of flux, always already hybrid. In other words, their works contain a glimpse of a world beyond racial and national categorisations. These new perspectives on immigrant and ethnic minority art, in particular Homi Bhaba’s work, were attacked from various angles. Some scholars argued that the understanding of migrants as generating hybridity is elitist. In fact, many migrants do not leave their countries of their own accord; their experience of migration is often traumatic and painful. As a consequence, they may develop a deep longing for a home rather than an awareness of general hybridity (Loomba 1998: 180-181). Other scholars argued that hybrid artistic works lose their subversive power once they are discovered by the global market, which seeks to commodify hybridity and suppress its political power in the process (Huggan 2001). On the positive side, the approach inspired many researchers to explore the hybridity of artists who are migrants but were never discussed as such, including the German author Günter Grass, for example (Frank 2008), and artists who never migrated but whose works can nevertheless be described in transnational terms (Seyhan 2010). Azade Seyhan (2001) applied post-colonial ideas to Turkish-German and Chicano literature, but in a later work (Seyhan 2010) moves beyond such separate categorisations for immigrant and ethnic minority artists, showing research to be on the verge of moving beyond separate categorisations for immigrant and ethnic minority artists.

Open spaces? Access to the arts and changing artistic fields In general, sociological studies of immigrant and ethnic minority incorporation into the arts are rare compared to research focusing on the content of artistic works. This can be explained by the fact that the disciplines deal-

Agents of changes

Moving beyond separate categories


Different disciplinary research traditions

Access to the arts

Wiebke Sievers

ing with art have traditionally regarded artists as geniuses. As a consequence, the individual dispositions of artists and in particular the social spaces facilitating their emergence have long been neglected (Bourdieu 1992: 259-263). At the same time, the social sciences have drawn upon immigrant and ethnic minority art to illustrate hypotheses on migration phenomena (see, e.g., White 1995). But social scientists have rarely applied their methodological apparatus to the respective artists, probably because the problems of this small elitist group were regarded as negligible compared to those of industrial labourers, for example. Looking at existing research, we may differentiate between two approaches: while scholars in the field of literature and the visual arts have tended to focus on incorporation into the artistic field of the host country, those working in the field of music have also looked at the extension of existing and the emergence of new artistic fields in the wake of migration. This may be explained by different disciplinary research traditions. Scholars dealing with immigrant and ethnic minority music have mainly come from ethnomusicology, which used to focus on music beyond the Western classical tradition, including not only Asian music but also all kinds of popular music. Often these scholars started working on immigrant and ethnic minority music after they had already studied the musical traditions in the respective source countries of these immigrants (Greve 2003; Slobin 2000: xiii). As a consequence, they had a particular interest in the continuing links to and the changes of these source country traditions in the process of migration, with a strong focus on folk and popular music. Scholars working on immigrant and ethnic minority literature and visual arts, on the other hand, usually come from disciplines dealing with particular literary and artistic traditions in Western Europe. Hence, their interest in immigrant and ethnic minority artists began to emerge only when these entered the artistic fields of their respective host countries; what happened beyond these fields was not their primary concern. The majority of studies dealing with immigrant and ethnic minority incorporation into the artistic fields of their host countries have tended to focus on two areas: (i) the specific conditions that hinder immigrants’ access to or their success in the artistic field of their receiving countries and (ii) the strategies immigrants use to overcome such obstacles. Discrimination has been regarded as the main factor hindering entry into artistic fields. For instance, several studies indicate that race has played a role in the judgement of artistic works and performances (Araeen 1991; Elliott 1995/1996). While cities and states have implemented cultural policies to overcome such discrimination, it is questionable whether these are ultimately successful. Although they provide artists with essential funds in the short term and thus increase their productivity, they may lead to segregation in the artistic field in the long run, with those artists needing such funds being regarded as lacking in artistic quality (Delhaye 2008). This disparagement of immi-

From Others to Artists?


grant and ethnic minority art may sometimes be traced back to the funding programmes themselves, which do not necessarily aim to further artistic quality but regard artistic production as a form of social work (Greve 2003: 399-400). On the other hand, there have also been initiatives to increase the visibility of immigrant and ethnic minority art for mainly economic reasons, such as the label World Music, invented in London in the late 1980s by a group of representatives of independent record companies, broadcasters and concert promoters to market African, Asian and Latin American music to European and US audiences. It has since been heavily criticised for pushing this music into a separated niche in musical markets (Winders 2006: 57-63; Huq 2006: 63-68). Notwithstanding these negative effects, such programmes sometimes seem to be necessary to stimulate production and distribution. At least, first-generation labour immigrants in Austria did not produce any literature (or at least none that has become known to the general public), unlike their colleagues in Germany where several organisations stimulated artistic production (Sievers 2008: 1226-1228). Another area that has found some interest is the representation of immigrants and ethnic minorities in cultural institutions, including not only gatekeepers, such as publishing houses (Holman 2004), but also universities (Ahmad 1992: 91), which contribute to the consecration of artists. Interestingly, Holman (ibid.) and Ahmad (ibid.) show opposite trends for the literary field in Britain. On the one hand, publishing in Britain is still predominantly white. As a consequence, young black and Asian writers are often confronted with stereotypical images and demands that limit authors to certain topics and writing styles. There is some empirical evidence that such pressures may also exist in other countries. Thus Tom Cheeseman (2006: 478) pointed out that the great majority of all Turkish-German books focus on the negotiations of Turkish-German identities. On the other hand, Ahmad argues that the growing number of black and Asian academics in Britain has been of major importance for the consecration of certain immigrant and ethnic minority writers, to the detriment of their colleagues still residing in India or Africa. Immigrant and ethnic minority artists use several strategies in order to deal with the obstacles hindering their entry into artistic fields. Martin Greve (2009: 126) argues that adapting to exotistic and stereotypical expectations of both cultural institutions and audiences offers the best prospects for success. But there are also many examples of artists’ resisting such pressures, often in a transnational context. An early example is the writer Raja Rao whose novel Kanthapura was published by Allan and Unwin simultaneously in London and Delhi in 1938. His English editor put pressure on him to adapt his style, which literally translates Kannada expressions and idioms into English, to English tastes. But he declined, also with reference to his Indian audience (Ranasinha 2007: 26-31). Other artists have founded their own cultural institutions such as publishing houses to overcome ex-


Overcoming obstacles



Transnational artistic spaces

Wiebke Sievers

clusion, as black writers did in 1940s France (Jules-Rosette 1998). Or they have taken recourse to sending-country institutions with a view to also gaining access to funds in their receiving country, as immigrant filmmakers did in Italy (Grassilli 2008). The strong focus on incorporation into the host country arts, especially in the field of literary studies, has meant that the significance of the sending context for access to these fields has often been neglected. However, more recent research looking at the arts from a global perspective shows that access to Western artistic fields has been facilitated by the massive influence that Western arts have had worldwide, particularly since the nineteenth century – a process misleadingly described as globalisation. French and English literary works were translated and artists from Paris, London and Berlin were invited to teach Western art abroad. At the same time, artists have travelled from all over the world to Paris, London and later New York in order to gain the cultural capital necessary to succeed not only in their countries of origin but also internationally. This constant exchange has brought about transnational artistic spaces based on Western traditions. Movement within these structures has been comparatively easy due to the overlap between the artistic fields in sending and receiving contexts, irrespective of the difficulties described above (Weber 1988: 50-53; Greve 2003: 304-318, 2009: 116-117; Casanova 2008). However, globalisation does not imply global homogeneity. As Priya Joshi (2003) shows, this process has to be regarded in its local specificity. Within the large quantity of English literature imported into India in the nineteenth century, the works that were widely lauded there did not necessarily coincide with those consecrated in Britain. Based on this observation, Joshi (ibid.) describes the particularity of Anglo-Indian writing from its beginnings in the nineteenth century up to diaspora writers, such as Salman Rushdie. Research on immigrant and ethnic minority music shows that similarly transnational artistic spaces have emerged in the field of non-Western folk and popular music, albeit often less institutionalised. These spaces first emerged when the workers who came to Europe after the Second World War began to settle here and their families joined them. In the course of this process, they also started to establish their own leisure facilities, including shops selling, among other things, music from their countries of origin. There were also bars and restaurants where individual musicians and small bands performed this music. Home-country newspapers and later satellite TV and the Internet have been the most important sources of information on musical trends in the country of origin. Apart from these structures facilitating the consumption of source-country music, there have also been initiatives aimed to encourage production. Children have been taught how to play instruments not known in their host cultures, and studios have been established to record music mainly targeted at audiences back in the sending countries (Banerji & Baumann 1990; Greve 2003: 93-

From Others to Artists?


159). In fact, some critics argue that these ethnic economies have meanwhile become major sources of economic regeneration in old industrial regions, such as Birmingham, for example, albeit not without the support of major distribution giants, such as Sony (McEwan, Pollard & Henry 2005: 925-927). More recently musicians in the diaspora have cooperated with colleagues ‘back home’ (Solomon 2009). Finally, there have been sourcecountry initiatives aimed at maintaining cultural links with co-ethnics in the diaspora, such as the publication possibilities Italian associations offered Italian workers abroad in the 1970s (Sievers 2008: 1220-1221) and the choirs singing Turkish music that were initiated in part by Turkish embassies in Germany in the early 1980s (Greve 2003: 335). Access to these transnational artistic fields was usually limited to those artists who knew the language and, in the case of musicians, were trained in the tone system (Greve 2009: 125). This implies that, unlike their ‘native’ colleagues, immigrant and ethnic minority artists could move back and forth between different artistic fields. Thus, Italian workers living in Germany, who first started writing in Italian and were published by Italian émigré associations, began to write in German and publish in German organs in the late 1970s, with some of them, including Carmine Abate, switching back to Italian when they returned (Parati 2005: 39-42).

Aesthetics of migration? Content and style The disciplines traditionally dealing with artistic works mainly concentrate on their content and style. So it comes as no surprise that the bulk of research on immigrant and ethnic minority art focuses on individual artists and artistic works analysed in terms of what they portray, how and in what context. Of course, the tools used to analyse the content and style of artistic works vary according to the specific form of art discussed. While studying prose means analysing the link between content, language and narrative structures, the academic discussion of music involves describing the relation between lyrics, sound and rhythm. Moreover, the tradition of each individual discipline shapes the way works of art are interpreted. Ethnomusicology, for example, has strong links to ethnographic research and therefore combines the interpretation of art works with participation in performances. This is not a major research method in literary studies or in the visual arts (with some exceptions, such as, e.g., drama studies). Nevertheless, there is some overlap in the way the content and style of immigrant and ethnic minority art are debated. To some extent, this may be traced back to general trends in the humanities, such as the impact of feminist and gender studies, for example, that has inspired researchers to discuss the representation of women and gender relations in immigrant and ethnic minority art (see amongst others Dudrah 2002: 376-379; Haines & Littler 2004).



Negotiating identities

Community identities

Wiebke Sievers

Besides these general trends, we may observe a distinct focus on analysing the way in which the content and style of immigrant and ethnic minority art negotiates identities. As explained in the theoretical discussion above, the understanding of the term ‘identity’ has changed in the course of the 1990s. These theoretical reflections have left a mark on both the art produced by immigrants and ethnic minorities and on its interpretations. Yet, the changing understanding of the term ‘identity’ is not the only reason for the evolution of new approaches to interpreting immigrant and ethnic minority art. Another factor is that the status of these art forms has changed in the course of time, mainly due to the impact of post-colonial studies. While first readings were firmly located in a tradition that regarded Western canons as the height of artistic developments and automatically subordinated all other art forms to these canonised works, this assumption has been seriously questioned in more recent readings. Early interpretations tended to read immigrant and ethnic minority art as representative of community identities more or less separated from those of the usually Western white academics. Thus, immigrant and ethnic minority writers originating from the former colonies and residing in Britain were mainly read as putting their newly independent countries of origin on the literary world map by rewriting colonial history from their perspectives and in their Creole languages (Ashcroft, Griffiths & ­Tiffin 2002). Immigrant and ethnic minority art in Germany, on the other hand, was usually regarded as mirroring the dire realities of labour immigrants working in this country, their longing for home, their loss of identity and their experiences of racism and exploitation (Hamm 1988; Reeg 1988; Zielke 1985; Weber 1988). Unlike in art and literature, the initial focus in the field of music was less on new forms emerging in the receiving societies than on religious and traditional music imported from the countries of origin and ‘the ways in which they change when placed in contact with strange musics and into new cultural and social contexts’ (Nettl 1992: 380). Nevertheless, like in art and literature studies, these imported traditions were regarded as embodying isolated community identities. Their performance in the country of residence was perceived as a way of maintaining links to the community of origin (Hemetek 2001: 328-375). While all of these readings served to increase the visibility of immigrant and ethnic minority art in their receiving societies, there was a tendency to marginalise these art forms in the process, albeit in different ways. While post-colonial literatures were usually classified as ‘isolated national off-shoots of English literature’ and therefore relegated ‘to marginal and subordinate positions’ in this initial phase of their reception (Ashcroft, Griffiths & Tiffin 2002: 7), immigrant and ethnic minority texts written in Germany were at first perceived as social documents rather than as works of art. They were therefore rarely analysed in the same terms used for lit-

From Others to Artists?


erature produced by German authors (Amodeo 1996: 12-32). In the field of music, on the other hand, subordination and marginalisation were already inherent in the existing separation between Western music and non-Western traditional music, with the latter discussed in a separate subfield, ethnomusicology, and long regarded as inferior to the former. However, there is also a trend in this field of regarding traditional music as superior to Western commercial music and of mixing these genres as corroboration, as becomes apparent from Banerji & Baumann’s (1990: 152) evaluation of the future of Bhangra in Britain: The future of Bhangra in the British music industry is as yet undecided. It would be a loss in many ways if Bhangra musicians sold out their genre to the latest British fad; a greater loss, however, and one that is more likely, if the music industry in Britain were to fight shy of the authentic, deeply rooted yet highly adaptable, styles of Bhangra in favour of one of its own purpose-built, synthetic, rootless and toothless hybrids.

When the understanding of identities changed in the course of the 1990s, this ‘rootless hybridity’ moved centre stage, often promoted by immigrant and ethnic minority academics. Interpretations, such as Banerji & Baumann’s, were dismissed as essentialising and neo-Orientalist (Sharma, S. 1996: 36) and replaced by readings highlighting that ‘music provides opportunities to formulate new alliances beyond national boundaries, rather than only as a fantasy of home affirming “tradition” or “origins”’ (Sharma, Hutnyk & Sharma 1996: 9). These ‘new alliances beyond national boundaries’ were identified in both the style and the content of immigrant and ethnic minority art and were often presented as characteristic of this genre. Just to cite some of the many examples: Sanjay Sharma (1996: 51-54) points out that the music of the post-Bhangra band Fun^Da^Mental goes beyond sampling Bhangra rhythms and includes ‘a vast mix of Indian classical and popular film music, Moroccan/Eastern drum beats, Qawwali sounds, Islamic chants, and the ingenious interweaving of dialogue from famous Hindi movies’. In line with this wide variety of musical alliances, Fun^Da^Mental’s texts call for unity against white racism, not only among Asians and Afro-Caribbeans in Britain, but also in a global context (ibid.). In the field of literature, the focus has been on the mixing of languages interpreted as questioning simplistic community constructions built on a national language and as allowing a multiplicity of identifications (Amodeo 1996). For the visual arts, Kobena Mercer (1994: 253) observes that artists use ‘collage, montage and bricolage as organizing aesthetic principles’ in order to produce ‘new representational statements’. In the field of film studies, Hamid Naficy (2001: 4) describes what he calls ‘accented cinema’ of diasporic and exilic filmmakers as sharing common features, such as a ‘fragmented, multilingual, epistolary, self-reflexive, and critically juxta-

Hybrid identities


Migratory aesthetics

Wiebke Sievers

posed narrative structure’ that according, to him, are closely linked to the dislocation of the respective filmmakers. More recently, such analyses focusing on the in-between and the hybrid status of immigrant and ethnic minority art have been criticised for neglecting the concrete linkage of these art works to their producers’ countries of origin and residence (Adelson 2001). In this vein, Azade Seyhan (2001) shows how the writing of diasporic communities, forced to leave their countries of origin but still joined by a collective memory and the will to survive as a minority, contribute to the writing of collective memories contradicting official versions of history in the home countries. And Gibb Schreffler (2012) argues that bhangra music is not only a product of migration but also emerged in Punjab. With regard to the impact on the countries of residence, recent interpretations of immigrant and ethnic minority literature focus on, for example, Turkish-German readings of German history, including the Holocaust and the German partition and reunification (Adelson 2005), and the presentation of specific places, such as London (MacLeod 2004) and Paris (Gorr 2000). In addition, there has been a distinct trend of historicising immigrant and ethnic minority art in specific receiving country contexts (Innes 2002; Ranasinha 2007; Dabiri 2012). The assumption underlying such interpretations is that immigration and in particular settlement changes the identities not only of those immigrating and settling but also of those already residing in the cities and countries hosting these settlers by cosmopolitising these (Parati 2005 for Italy, Cheesman 2007 for Germany, Kamm et al. 2010 for Switzerland). Mieke Bal (2007: 23) calls this new approach to art ‘migratory aesthetics’, which is not an aesthetic specific to immigrant and ethnic minority art, as implied in the interpretations described earlier, but a general change in aesthetics due to migration: ‘migrants (as subjects) and migration (as an act to perform as well as a state to be or live in) are part of any society today, and... their presence is an incontestable source of cultural transformation’. This implies that immigrant and ethnic minority art should no longer be read as a separate category, but as part of a more general process of change in aesthetics due to migration. At the same time, researchers observe new forms of art, such as the Turkish-German electronic music scene in Berlin, in which ‘immigrant identity is almost irrelevant’ (Güney, Pekman & Kabaş 2014).

From exotic other to strange self? Reception and its wider effects The debates that have surrounded the media reception of immigrant and ethnic minority art can be subsumed under what Mercer (1994) names ‘the burden of representation’. Mercer describes this phenomenon as a problem faced by immigrant and ethnic minority artists in societies where only a

From Others to Artists?


small number of such artists manages to enter and gain recognition in the artistic fields: When artists are positioned in the margins of the institutional spaces of cultural production, they are burdened with the impossible task of speaking as ‘representatives’ in that they are widely expected to ‘speak for’ the marginal communities from which they come (ibid.: 235).

This assumption has affected the reception of immigrant and ethnic minority art among members of both the respective majority and minority communities, albeit in different ways. With regard to the majority, there has been a trend to push artists into the ethnic corner. Their works have been expected to provide authentic insights into minority realities and problems, with authenticity being determined by the receiving side, which has often favoured the exotic and strange. This has had a twofold effect: Artists who did not fulfil these expectations but tapped into avant-garde discourses in their host country, for example, were categorised as unauthentic and ignored. On the other hand, those works meeting these demands were denied recognition as works of art since their artistic approach was automatically assumed to be inferior to Western achievements. For example, the 1989 art exhibition ‘The Other Story’ that aimed to highlight the exclusion of Afro-Asian artists in post-war Britain led the mainstream critic Brian Sewell to conclude, ‘[T]he work of Afro-Asian artists in the West is no more than a curiosity, not yet worth even a footnote in any history of 20th century western art’ (The Sunday Times Magazine, 26 November 1989, cited in Araeen 1991: 26; also see Araeen 2008). Of course, the conditions have changed since. Several immigrant and ethnic minority artists have been granted prestigious prizes over the last two decades. Thus, Emine Sevgi Özdamar received the most prestigious German prize for literature, the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize, in 1991 and the same year Anish Kapoor, who was born in India, was granted the most important prize for British art, the Turner Prize. In fact, Mercer (1999) claims that immigrant and ethnic minority art moved from being invisible to being hyper-visible in the course of the 1990s. However, this does not mean that the artists were completely relieved of the ‘burden of representation’. Emine Sevgi Özdamar, for example, was still received as exotic, but rather than being belittled, she was praised in the press for her oriental difference (Jankowsky 1997). Hence, ‘the burden of representation’ may no longer impede artistic recognition in the mainstream, but it is still an issue: ‘Those excluded “others” continue to work at the coal face of British art, simultaneously challenging their exclusion from art’s history and bearing the burden of creating a visual vocabulary that operates beyond the project of representation’ (Tolia-Kelly & Morris 2004: 167).


Burden of representation


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The ‘burden of representation’ also affects the reception of immigrant and ethnic minority arts within the communities the artists are allegedly representing. Here problems arise from ‘the unspoken imperative that, as black subjects, we should never discuss our “differences” in public’ or, in other words, ‘dirty laundry’ was supposed to be kept private (Mercer 1994: 238). Again, this has had a twofold effect on the reception of immigrant and ethnic minority art. On the one hand, artistic works, such as Hanif Kureshi’s film My Beautiful Laundrette (1986) and more recently Monica Ali’s Brick Lane (2003), have been harshly criticised for allegedly misrepresenting the respective ethnic community in Britain (Mercer 1994: 252; Maxey 2008). Similarly, Kurdish musicians in Germany have been criticised in Turkish newspapers for negative representations of Turkey (Greve 2003: 57). On the other hand, aesthetic criticism has been neglected, as pointed out by Salman Rushdie in a critical debate surrounding John Akomfrah’s film Handsworth Songs (1987) dealing with the 1985 uprisings in Handsworth, Birmingham: It isn’t easy for black voices to be heard. It isn’t easy to get it said that the state attacks us, that the police are militarised. It isn’t easy to fight back against media stereotypes. As a result, whenever somebody says what we all know, even if they say it clumsily and in jargon, there is a strong desire to cheer, just because they managed to get something said, they managed to get through (Rushdie 2000: 263, originally published in The Guardian, 12 January 1987). Evaluation criteria

Rushdie’s intervention initiated a critical debate about criteria for the evaluation of immigrant and ethnic minority art. Initially, this debate focused on the question of whether the existing criteria for evaluating art could be applied to immigrant and ethnic minority art or whether new criteria would have to be developed for these works. Paul Gilroy (1993) proposes that black art and in particular black music is based on a different understanding of art that is critical of the Western concept of art and therefore cannot be judged by the same standards. While Western art since the Enlightenment has built on the assumption that art and life are two separate spheres, black art is said to express a ‘continuity of art and life’: ‘[It] celebrate[s] the grounding of the aesthetic with other dimensions of social life’ (ibid.: 57). Gilroy believes that this entails a particular aesthetic that derives ‘from an inescapably subjective contemplation of the mimetic functions of artistic performance in the processes of struggles towards emancipation, citizenship, and eventually autonomy’ (ibid.). Mercer (1994: 252-253), on the other hand, argues that existing evaluation criteria could be adapted to judge immigrant and ethnic minority art since these artists did not invent new art forms but found their own languages within existing frameworks. The work of the critic would

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therefore consist of highlighting the specific qualities of these new artistic languages. Both of these approaches have had an impact on the critical discussion of immigrant and ethnic minority art. While Mercer initiated discussions on the specific characteristics of immigrant and ethnic minority art, Gilroy contributed to reconceptualise the understanding of art, which has also led to a questioning of the principles underlying Western art criticism. Greve (2002), for example, calls for the abolition of the Eurocentric division between Western art music (discussed in historical musicology and regarded as the height of musical achievement) and non-Western music (discussed in ethnomusicology and traditionally dismissed as primitive), arguing that there are no clear boundaries between these two, neither in geographic nor in stylistic terms, also due to growing migration. In a similar vein, scholars question the nationally oriented study of art and literature. A further step in this process of critical reorientation has been to apply the knowledge gained from the analysis of immigrant and ethnic minority art to the analysis of art in general in projects such as Intercultural Literary Studies (Hofmann 2006).

Concluding remarks: Ways towards the future This chapter’s overview of research on immigrant and ethnic minority art shows that a main issue to be tackled in the future is how to foster diversity in artistic fields without fixing identities. Scholars have taken steps in this direction in recent years, but much more work is necessary to go beyond the exoticisation of immigrant and ethnic minority artists. Research in the field of music has highlighted the contribution of immigrant and ethnic minority artists in producing a large variety of artistic works. However, only those works fulfilling often exoticising demands are known and discussed in the artistic fields of the countries where these artists reside. Especially in the fields of the visual arts and literature, researchers will have to move beyond this visible ‘tip of the iceberg’ and explore the wider variety of existing artistic works. In the field of literature, this could include identifying and discussing works written in languages other than the major language spoken in the respective country of residence, which would imply pushing the disciplinary boundaries of English, French and German studies even further than the study of immigrant and ethnic minority literatures has already done. First steps have been made in gathering the necessary information (see, e.g., Chiellino 2000) but stylistic analyses still focus on a very limited number of artists. Research has also made some progress in questioning the simplistic differentiations between ‘us’ and ‘them’. Analytical models based on postcolonial and cultural studies are increasingly being applied to works not

Abolishing Eurocentric division


Questioning simplistic differentiations

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written by immigrant and ethnic minority artists, while the works of these latter are now also being read in terms of their impact on the culture of the countries where these artists reside. Moreover, researchers have begun to discuss immigrant and ethnic minority art alongside works not produced by immigrant and ethnic minority artists (Haines & Littler 2004; Huq 2006). But more work will certainly be necessary to overcome segregation in the field of art and to understand the interrelations between immigrant and ethnic minority art and art produced by majority artists in their countries of residence.

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Cheesman, T. (2007), Novels of Turkish German Settlement: Cosmopolite Fictions. Rochester: Camden House. Chiellino, C. (2000), Interkulturelle Literatur in Deutschland: Ein Handbuch. Stuttgart, Weimar: Metzler. Dabiri, E. (2012), ‘Migrations: Journeys into British art, Tate Britain, 31 January-12 August 2012’, Journal of African Cultural Studies 24 (1): 101-105. Delhaye, C. (2008), ‘Immigrants’ artistic practices in Amsterdam, 1970-2007: A political issue of inclusion and exclusion’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 34 (8): 1301-1321. Dudrah, R. K. (2002), ‘Drum’n’dhol: British bhangra music and diasporic South Asian identity formation’, Cultural Studies 5 (3): 363-383. Elliott, C. (1995/1996), ‘Race and gender as factors in judgements of musical performance’, Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education 127: 50-56. Frank, S. (2008), Migration and Literature: Günter Grass, Milan Kundera, Salman Rushdie, and Jan Kjærstad. New York: Palgrave. Gilroy, P. (1993), The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double Consciousness. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Gorr, H. (2000), Paris als interkultureller Raum: Die Metropole im postkolonialen Kontext des Maghrebinischen Romans. Berlin: Wissenschaftlicher Verlag. Grassilli, M. (2008), ‘Migrant cinema: Transnational and guerrilla practices of film production and representation’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 34 (8): 1237-1255. Greve, M. (2002), ‘Writing against Europe: Vom notwendigen Verschwinden der “Musikethnologie”’, Die Musikforschung 55 (3): 239-251. Greve, M. (2003), Die Musik der imaginären Türkei: Musik und Musikleben im ­Kontext der Migration aus der Türkei in Deutschland. Stuttgart, Weimar: Metz­ler. Greve, M. (2009), ‘Music in the European-Turkish diaspora’, in B. Clausen, U. Hemetek, E. Saether & European Music Council (eds), Music in Motion: Diversity and Dialogue in Europe. Bielefeld: Transcript Verlag, 115-132. Güney, S., C. Pekman & Bülent Kabaş (2014), ‘Diasporic music in transition: Turkish immigrant performers on the stage of “multikulti” Berlin’, Popular Music and Society 37 (2): 132-151. Haines, B. & M. Littler (2004), Contemporary Women’s Writing in German: Changing the Subject. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Hamm, H. (1988), Fremdgegangen – Freigeschrieben: Eine Einführung in die deutsch­ sprachige Gastarbeiterliteratur. Würzburg: Königshausen und Neumann. Hemetek, U. (2001), Mosaik der Klänge: Musik der ethnischen und religiösen Minderheiten in Österreich. Wien: Böhlau. Hofmann, M. (2006), Interkulturelle Literaturwissenschaft: eine Einführung. Pader­ born: Fink. Holman, T. (2004), ‘Room for improvement’, The Bookseller. In Full Color: Cultural Diversity in Book Publishing Today (12 March): 4-6. Huggan, G. (2001), The Postcolonial Exotic: Marketing the Margins. London: Routledge.


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Huq, R. (2006), Beyond Subculture: Pop, Youth and Identity in a Postcolonial World. London, New York: Routledge. Innes, C. L. (2002), A History of Black and Asian Writing in Britain, 1700-2000. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Jankowsky, K. (1997), ‘“German” literature contested: The 1991 Ingeborg-Bachmann-Prize debate, “cultural diversity”, and Emine Sevgi Özdamar’, German Quarterly 70: 261-276. Joshi, P. (2003), In Another Country: Colonialism, Culture, and the English Novel in India. New Delhi: Oxford University Press. Jules-Rosette, B. (1998), Black Paris: The African Writers’ Landscape. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Kamm, M., B. Spoerri, D. Rothenbühler & G. D’Amato (eds) (2010), Diskurse in die Weite: Kosmopolitische Räume in den Literaturen der Schweiz. Zürich: Seismo. Loomba, A. (1998), Colonialism/Postcolonialism. London: Routledge. Maxey, R. (2008), ‘“Representative” of British Asian fiction? The critical reception of Monica Ali’s Brick Lane’, in N. Murphy & W.-C. Sim (eds), British Asian Fiction: Framing the Contemporary. Amherst: Cambria, 217-235. McEwan, C., J. Pollard & N. Henry (2005), ‘The “Global” in the city economy: Multicultural economic development in Birmingham’, International Journal of Urban and Regional Studies 29 (4): 916-933. McLeod, J. (2004), Postcolonial London: Rewriting the Metropolis. Abingdon, New York: Routledge. Mercer, K. (1994), Welcome to the Jungle: New Positions in Black Cultural Studies. New York, London: Routledge. Mercer, K. (1999), ‘Ethnicity and internationality: New British art and diasporabased blackness’, Third Text 13 (49): 51-62. Mercer, K. (ed.) (2008), Exiles, Diasporas & Strangers. London, Cambridge: Institute of International Visual Arts, MIT Press. Naficy, H. (2001), An Accented Cinema: Exilic and Diasporic Filmmaking. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Nettl, B. (1992), ‘Recent directions in ethnomusicology’, in H. Myers (ed.), Ethnomusicology: An Introduction. New York, London: Norton, 375-403. Oliver, P. (1990), ‘The background of black music, 1800-1950: Introduction’, in P. Oliver (ed.), Black Music in Britain: Essays on the Afro-Asian Contribution to Popular Music. Milton Keynes: Open University Press, 3-15. Parati, G. (2005), Migration Italy: The Art of Talking Back in a Destination Culture. Toronto, Buffalo, London: University of Toronto Press. Procter, J. (ed.) (2000), Writing Black Britain 1948-1998: An Interdisciplinary Anthology. Manchester: Manchester University Press. Ranasinha, R. (2007), South Asian Writers in Twentieth-Century Britain. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Reeg, U. (1988), Schreiben in der Fremde: Literatur Nationaler Minderheiten in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland. Essen: Klartext.

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Rushdie, S. (2000), ‘Songs doesn’t know the score’, in J. Procter (ed.), Writing Black Britain 1948-1998: An Interdisciplinary Anthology. Manchester, New York: Manchester University Press, 261-263. Originally published in The Guardian, 12 January 1987. Sartre, J.-P. (1948), ‘Orphée noir’, in L. S. Senghor (ed.), Anthologie de la Nouvelle Poésie Nègre et Malgache de Langue Francaise. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 9-44. Schreffler, G. (2012), ‘Migration shaping media: Punjabi popular music on a global historical perspective’, Popular Music and Society 35 (3): 333-358. Seyhan, A. (2001), Writing outside the Nation. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Seyhan, A. (2010), ‘Unfinished modernism: European destinations of transnational writing’, in M. Gebauer & P. Schwarz Lausten (eds), Migration and Literature in Contemporary Europe. Munich: Meidenbauer. Sharma, A. (1996), ‘Sounds oriental: The (im)possibility of theorizing Asian musical cultures’, in S. Sharma, J. Hutnyk & A. Sharma (eds), Dis-Orienting Rhythms: The Politics of the New Asian Dance Music. London, New Jersey: Zed Books, 15-31. Sharma, S. (1996), ‘Noisy Asians or “Asian noise”?’ in S. Sharma, J. Hutnyk & A. Sharma (eds), Dis-Orienting Rhythms: The Politics of the New Asian Dance Music. London, New Jersey: Zed Books, 32-57. Sharma, S., J. Hutnyk & A. Sharma (1996), ‘Introduction’, in S. Sharma, J. Hutnyk & A. Sharma (eds), Dis-Orienting Rhythms: The Politics of the New Asian Dance Music. London: Zed Books, 1-11. Sievers, W. (2008), ‘Writing politics: The emergence of immigrant writing in West Germany and Austria’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 34 (8): 1217-1235. Sievers, W. (2012) ‘Zwischen Ausgrenzung und kreativem Potential: Migration und Integration in der Literaturwissenschaft’, in H. Fassmann & J. Dahlvik (eds), Migrations- und Integrationsforschung: Multidisziplinäre Perspektiven. Ein Reader. Vienna: Vienna University Press, 213-238. Slobin, M. (2000), Subcultural Sounds: Micromusics of the West. Hanover, London: Wesleyan University Press. Solomon, T. (2009), ‘Berlin-Frankfurt-Istanbul: Turkish hip-hop in motion’, European Journal of Cultural Studies 12 (3): 305-327. Steiner, G. (1972), Extraterritorial: Papers on Literature and the Language of Revolution. London: Faber and Faber. Tolia-Kelly, D. & A. Morris (2004), ‘Disruptive aesthetics? Revisiting the Burden of Representation in the art of Chris Ofili and Yinka Shonibare’, Third Text 18 (2): 153-167. Weber, E. (1988), In zwei Welten: Migration und Kunst. Frankfurt: Neue Kritik. White, P. (1995), ‘Geography, literature and migration’, in R. King, J. Connell & P. White (eds), Writing across Worlds: Literature and Migration. London: Routledge, 1-19. Winders, J. A. (2006), Paris Africain: Rhythms of the African Diaspora. New York: Palgrave. Zielke, A. (1985), Standortbestimmung der ‘Gastarbeiter-Literatur’ in deutscher Sprache in der Bundesdeutschen Literaturszene. Kassel: Gesamthochschul-Bibliothek Kassel.


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Key reading Clausen, B., U. Hemetek, E. Saether & European Music Council (2009) (eds), Music in Motion: Diversity and Dialogue in Europe. Bielefeld: Transcript Verlag. Mercer, K. (ed.) (2008), Exiles, Diasporas & Strangers. London, Cambridge: Institute of International Visual Arts, MIT Press. Sievers, W. & S. Vlasta (forthcoming), Migration and Literature: A Handbook of Theories, Approaches and Readings. Basingstoke: Palgrave.

About the author Wiebke Sievers is a researcher at the Institute for Urban and Regional ­Research of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna. She has p ­ ublished on migration studies, literary studies and translation studies. Recent publications include Contemporary German Prose in Britain and France (2007), Citizenship Policies in the New Europe (2009) and Statistics and Reality: Concepts and Measurements of Migration in Europe (2009), as well as articles on immigrant and ethnic minority writing and on individual authors, including Samuel Beckett, Elias Canetti, Dimitré Dinev and Herta Müller. She is co-editor of the book Migration from the Middle East and North Africa to Europe: Past Developments, Current Status and Future Potentials with Michael Bommes (posthumously) and Heinz Fassmann.

14  Sport and Migration in the Global Context Richard Giulianotti

Summary The interrelationship of sport and migration remains very much under-researched within the social sciences. This is an increasingly curious lacuna, given the centrality of both migration and sport in contemporary social life in both the Global North and the Global South. This chapter examines broad issues related to the social impacts of migration on sport. It explores the theme of cultural imperialism, looking at debates on the historical diffusion and contemporary global political economy of sport. The cultural politics of race and migration within sport are addressed, as well as issues of national identity. Sociocultural theorisations of globalisation are then introduced, considering debates on creolisation, hybridisation and glocalisation theory. The chapter concludes by exploring some areas for future research on sport and migration. Keywords: sport migration, sociology of sport, elite sports, football, cultural imperialism

Introduction The paucity of research on the interrelationship of sport and migration is increasingly curious, given the centrality of both migration and sport in contemporary life. Additionally, research within this field has tended to have a relatively limited focus on theory, inclining instead towards more empirical studies. This chapter considers five broad domains in which sport-migration debates may be developed. It starts by examining broad issues related to the social impacts of migration on sport, with particular reference to general debates on integration and differentiation of migrants. Then the theme of cultural imperialism is explored, with reference to debates on the historical diffusion and contemporary global political economy of sport. The third section addresses the cultural politics of race and migration within


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sport, while the fourth explores issues of national identity, with particular reference to debates on sport and assimilation. The fifth section discusses socio-cultural theorisations of globalisation, considering debates on creolisation, hybridisation and glocalisation theory. The chapter concludes by exploring some areas for future research into sport and migration.

The social impacts of migration on sport

Bridging and bonding

To begin, we may set the scene with regard to the broad role of sport as a vehicle for the social integration or differentiation of migrant individuals and social groups within their host societies. The concepts of ‘bridging’ and ‘bonding’ social capital are useful here in marking out the different roles of sport (see, e.g., Putnam 2000). Bridging social capital involves the building of stronger connections with external social groups, and thus points towards broader integration within the host society; bonding social capital involves the strengthening of in-group ties, and as a consequence points towards the differentiation of migrant and ethnic groups vis-à-vis the host society. Research is inconclusive on the social role of sport in relation to integration or differentiation. For example, in terms of bonding functions, in the Netherlands, one study found that sports such as football tended to attract participants from migrant and other minority groups by enabling a strengthening of ethnic identity. At the same time, tensions with other communities tended to be reproduced or intensified, in part due to the inherently competitive and aggressive aspects of the sport (Krouwel et al. 2006). In Belgium, research found that ethnically-mixed sport clubs enabled members of minority communities to make stronger social contact with people from other ethnic groups, pointing towards greater levels of bridging social capital (Theeboom, Schaillée & Nols 2012). Five broad points need to be considered in terms of sport’s role in regard to integration and differentiation. First, we need to examine the social and cultural aspects of sports. For example, some sports (such as football, basketball, handball and cricket) are organised and played in teams, and thus provide for more interaction with other social groups than individually based sports do (such as tennis or skiing). In addition, migrant groups and the host society may play the same sports or prefer different sports, again resulting in different levels and qualities of interaction between the two communities. Second, the immediate lifeworlds of the migrant individuals and social groups need to be examined. In the case of poor migrants and refugees, for example, recreational sport may offer some respite from very difficult social circumstances; it may also provide structured and inclusive interaction with people from different communities, including the host society (see, e.g., Henry 2005). Third, we need to recognise the impact

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of intersecting social divisions, in regard to class, gender, age, religion and ethno-linguistic status, upon sport participation. For example, among migrant populations, sport participation tends to be low among women, the elderly, the unemployed, and those speaking non-official languages (Aizlewood, Bevelander & Pendakur 2006). Research also indicates that migrant women experience different types of social constraint and exclusion: African women experience more racism in their sport participation, while Asian women (particularly Muslim women) face greater religious barriers to their involvement (Walseth & Fasting 2004). Fourth, the wider political, social and cultural contexts have to be considered. If there is a tense political backdrop to social relations between migrant communities and the wider host society – as instanced, for example, by the rise of far right movements – then the role of sport in promoting better inter-ethnic relations needs careful consideration. Finally, we should recognise that these processes are dynamic ones, and lead to changes over time. Most notably, we find that the second and third generations of migrant groups engage in complex ways with the different sports that are associated, respectively, with their parental cultures and with the host society. This point is considered more fully later. We next, however, turn to explore the historical and structural contexts of the sport-migration interface, with particular reference to the issue of cultural imperialism.

Cultural imperialism and sport The question of cultural imperialism has a critical relevance to the issue of migration vis-à-vis sport. This chapter understands cultural imperialism to refer to the harnessing of culture (particularly sport) in order to sustain and to intensify frameworks of systematic domination that exist across nations and regions. The transnational diffusion of sport A number of analysts have examined how the global diffusion of sports, especially during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, was driven by processes of cultural imperialism involving migrant colonists from Europe in different parts of the world (see, e.g., Guttmann 1994; Holt 1989; Mangan 1986; Tomlinson 2002). The process began in Britain in the second half of the nineteenth century, as a ‘games revolution’ that swept through the higher social classes. Many young men at the leading schools and universities played sports such as cricket, rugby, tennis and the various athletic disciplines. Meanwhile, sports such as football and also rugby were taken up en masse by the working classes. In turn, British migration overseas opened up distinctive international routes for the spread of these sports: in

Harnessing of culture


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the colonies of Australasia, South Asia, and southern Africa, sports such as cricket and rugby were implanted by a mix of expatriate settlers, military officers, administrators, teachers and missionaries. In Europe and Latin America, where commercial and educational ties were strongest, sports such as football were popularised particularly by British workers, merchants and teachers, as well as by Anglophile natives who had returned home from Britain (Perkin 1992). The cultural imperialistic aspects of these sports, particularly in the British colonies, took several forms. First, where taught among colonised peoples, these sports typically functioned to undermine and to destroy indigenous body and movement cultures (see Bale & Sang 1996). Second, particularly in India, these sports were promoted among indigenous elites, and thus served to cement imperial hegemony within colonised territories (Hargreaves 1986). Third, the deeply ethnocentric imposition of these sports was often directly at odds with indigenous cultural values; thus, for example, high-caste Indian boys were schooled in rowing, cricket and football, which tended to result in the caste-threatening development of visible muscles and polluting contact with leather balls (Mangan 1986). Fourth, sport clubs were established which quickly came to function as a key source of social capital, establishing forms of social closure and sustaining the socio-cultural values and practices of ‘Home’ among indigenous elites and the small British migrant settler populations. Overall, the diffusion of these British games provides the strongest historical illustration of the cultural imperialism thesis in regard to the interface of sport and migration. The contemporary sport migration system

Structural relations

In the broad social sciences, analysts such as Wallerstein (1974, 2001), Arrighi (1994) and Frank (1967; Frank & Gills 1993) have critically examined the processes by which particular ‘core’ nations and regions (notably the USA, Europe and Japan) have dominated the modern world economy through control of modes of production, technological development and the international division of labour. As a consequence, ‘peripheral’ (e.g., African) and ‘semi-peripheral’ (e.g., East European) regions may be stuck in states of neo-colonial, dependent underdevelopment. Arguably, these conditions have been exacerbated since the late 1970s by the international imposition of neoliberal (and anti-protectionist) economic policies across ‘developing’ nations (see Chang 2002, 2008). It is possible to explore how these structural relations shape patterns of migration within sport, particularly at the elite professional level. For example, some analysts have argued that a ‘brawn drain’ occurs in sport, mirroring the better-known global ‘brain drain’, as the best sporting talents of the Global South are sucked systematically into the richer sport systems of the Global North. Indeed, there is a substantial symbiosis between the

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‘brawn drain’ and ‘brain drain’ from the Global South, for example, as US colleges have become increasingly assiduous in recruiting foreign student athletes (see Bale 1991). Football and baseball would appear to provide some of the strongest illustrations of the contemporary imperialism underlying international sport migration. In South America and Africa, the football systems are strongly geared towards the international transfer of elite players, primarily to the Global North. In Brazil, more than 1,100 football players are transferred abroad each year, with the result that over 100 Brazilians compete in the European Champions League tournament. Even the much smaller nation of Uruguay sold more than 600 players to foreign clubs in the late 1990s (Giulianotti & Robertson 2009: 78). French football is a particularly avid importer of African players from francophone nations. The result, in part, is that the football league systems in North African nations, and in countries such as Senegal and Ivory Coast, continue to be less ‘developed’ than they would be if the more talented players had remained. Moreover, the haemorrhage of elite sporting talent to the Global North is beginning increasingly early, with African and Latin American players being transferred overseas at younger ages than was the case in the 1980s. This process is underpinned by several factors. First, most importantly, Latin American and African clubs are typically indebted to and preyed upon by corrupt officials, and are thus dependent on international fees for players to stave off bankruptcy. Second, football scouts in the Global North are increasingly focused on worldwide recruitment, particularly to draw as much precocious talent as possible into their youth academies. Third, Latin America and Africa harbour a growing number of football entrepreneurs, such as player agents, academy owners and club directors, who profit personally from the international export of players. These institutional actors have been key in facilitating transfers by evading or breaking laws. For example, in the 1990s and early 2000s, many players from South America were encouraged to obtain illegal passports or to forge their ‘European’ ancestry in order to secure work permits. In mainland Europe, there have been a host of ‘trafficking’ cases involving young African players who were abandoned either when they moved or after they failed to secure contracts with clubs.1 In France, one response has been to establish a supportive NGO, Culture Foot Solidaire, aimed at helping young migrant players who have been abandoned. One consequence of these processes is that significant sectors of African and Latin American football undergo financial entropy and systemic ‘underdevelopment’, as local audiences lose interest in watching teams that have inferior players, and as clubs in the richest European leagues move far 1

See, for example,

Elite sporting talent


Non-sport commercial interests

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further ahead of their counterparts in other regions. The president of FIFA (football’s global governing body), Sepp Blatter, publicly castigated ‘neocolonialist’ European clubs for creating ‘a glorified body market’ in young players and for the ‘social and economic rape’ of football in the Global South (Financial Times, 12 October 2005). However, football’s governing bodies have had relatively little impact in controlling the global labour market. Similar arguments may be advanced on the international division of labour in elite baseball. American and Japanese baseball clubs have established neo-colonial recruitment methods in Central America that ‘migrate’ the best local resources into these rich sport markets. These ‘core’ clubs have founded training and recruitment academies in nations such as the Dominican Republic. These sift through local players to locate the finest talents, who they then refine and ship off to North America and Japan, where they are honed to compete at the highest levels and then presented with exploitative contracts. Players who fail to ‘make the grade’ are spat back out by the system, returning home to join the inferior residue that fills local teams. Building on this theme, some analysts have revealed the extent to which some major league clubs have exploited Latino players, violating their human rights in regard to labour contract details, medical care and standard of living in training centres (Marcano & Fidler 1999, 2003). Even the most successful instances of international labour market mobility in sport may be underpinned by strong, non-sport commercial interests that are associated with cultural imperialism. In the Global North, major sports leagues (such as the US National Basketball Association (NBA) and the Spanish La Liga top football division), as well as the leading sport clubs or ‘franchises’ (such as the Chicago Bulls, LA Lakers, Real Madrid and Barcelona), are strongly committed to transnational market expansion. One way of gaining strong footholds in wealthy and populous ‘target markets’, such as East Asia, is to recruit players from the relevant region, and to make him (it is always a man) a focus of celebration and commercialisation. In the NBA, recruitment of Yao Ming helped to secure Chinese interest in basketball. In football, the signing of various Japanese stars by European clubs helped to lure Japanese interest in these teams and to sell tens of thousands of replica shirts (Miller et al. 2001; Moffett 2003). Weaknesses in cultural imperialist arguments Several significant underlying weaknesses can be identified in cultural imperialist arguments. First, some aspects of the cultural imperialism thesis seem to assume, rather problematically, that in theoretical terms, cultural superstructures such as sport are simply determined by the ‘base’ forces of political economy. Alternatively, a more ‘bottom-up’ approach would recognise that, at an everyday level, individuals and social groups engage

Sport and Migration in the Global Context


creatively and critically with the ‘dominant’ culture. Thus, for example, migrant groups from the Global South are able to maintain their particular sport interests and allegiances, despite perceived pressures from the host society to engage with the traditional sporting cultures of the host society. One illustration is provided by Turkish migrants in Germany, who as well as establishing ‘home town’ associations are also able to maintain allegiances to Turkish football clubs and to facilitate participation in Turkish wrestling clubs. Second, at elite level, international labour flows are not unidirectional, from the Global South to the Global North. There are, for example, good examples of links connecting semi-peripheral and peripheral societies, perhaps most notably the many Brazilian players found playing football all over the world, especially in South America, in South and South-East Asia and across Eastern Europe. Third, migrant athletes within sport’s international labour system do not tend to harbour any strong sense of exploitation (Bale 1991). In baseball, many Latino players see ‘the glass as half-full, rather than half-empty’, emphasising the comparative advantages of playing in North America (and sending remittances home to their families) rather than playing in impoverished domestic leagues for low rewards. In football, as in baseball, we find that athletes who are imported from the Global South and fail to ‘make the grade’ in elite sport still elect to remain in the Global North, pursuing alternative training or employment opportunities, rather than returning home where their life chances are far slimmer. In general, however, these empirical and qualitative observations do not by themselves entirely negate the explanatory utility of cultural imperialism theories on sport, for it could still be argued that the pragmatic decision-making of these athletes occurs within specific structural circumstances that remain largely oppressive and disempowering.

The cultural politics of race, ethnicity, migration and sport We now turn to consider issues of ‘race’ in regard to migrant groups and sport. This issue is significant as it underpins many of the experiences and relationships that migrant individuals and social groups have in sports contexts. The concept of ‘race’ is one of the most contested in the social sciences. Social scientists understand ‘race’ as a deeply ideological term that discursively underpins the ‘racialisation’ of social relations between different peoples (see Miles 1993). In marked contrast, the keyword ‘ethnicity’ has more socially positive underpinnings, and refers to social diversity with a particular focus on forms of cultural heritage, identity and memory that are consciously shared by people who claim belonging to specific ­‘ethnic groups’.

Comparative advantages


Colour barriers

Richard Giulianotti

The keywords race and ethnicity are both underpinned by the longterm consequences of colonial and post-colonial migration processes, most obviously the mass shipment of African slaves to the Americas and Caribbean, the diasporic movement of peoples from the Old World to the New, and the post-colonial migration of peoples from ‘developing nations’ into the Global North from the 1950s onwards (e.g., North Africans into France, and peoples from the Indian subcontinent into the UK). These historical processes thus underlie the contemporary confluence of race, migration and sport. They also establish the contexts that migrants encounter upon arrival within these host societies. Most elite sports remain deeply affected by the long and diverse histories of systematic exclusion or marginalisation which have been endured by migrant groups and ethnic minorities. Illustrations here include the ‘colour barriers’ within North American sport, which excluded African Americans from the opportunity to join different elite-level teams and sport leagues until into the 1960s (Reiss 1991; Roberts & Olsen 1989). In South American football, many leading South American clubs and tournaments prohibited the participation of non-white players until the 1920s and 1930s (Taylor 1997: 81-82; Leite Lopes 1997: 64). Of course, the most systematic exclusion of non-whites from sports occurred in South Africa under the apartheid regime (Black & Nauright 1998; Booth 1998). In this context, migrant and visiting non-white athletes were also subject to the oppressive laws and regulations of apartheid, which heavily restricted the sporting and other social spaces that could be accessed by those outside the ruling white minority. Historically, the incorporation of non-white migrant groups within many sport systems has shown itself to be a largely exploitative, abusive and piecemeal process. Three broad points may be made in this regard. First, overt racist discrimination and abuse have continued to be experienced by many migrant non-white athletes in sport. In Italian football, non-white migrant players have experienced substantial racist abuse from the stadium stands, while the leading black Italian player, Mario Balotelli (the son of Ghanaian immigrants to Italy), has been the butt of racist ‘humour’ from Italian football officials and media, including his cartoon representation as King Kong in the leading sport newspaper, Gazzetta dello Sport (26 June 2012). In Russian football, non-white players imported from abroad have experienced recurring racist abuse by spectators. Indeed, fans of the leading club Zenit St Petersburg released a statement opposing the signing of black or gay players (Guardian, 17 December 2012). A second point to be made regarding piecemeal incorporation within many sport systems concerns more subtle forms of racist treatment within sport, for instance, migrant athletes being positioned or ‘stacked’ into particular playing roles on the basis of racial stereotyping. Some team sports have tended to allocate ‘intelligent centre’ positions (such as the role of

Sport and Migration in the Global Context


the midfield playmaker in football and the quarterback position in American football) to ‘reliable’ and ‘cool-thinking’ whites, while non-whites are directed into outside roles where physical attributes are more important than game intelligence (Giulianotti 2000). East Asian athletes tend to be disproportionately under-represented in elite-level athletic sports. One potential psychological and sociological explanation for this relates to widespread stereotypical assumptions about the inherent lack of physical prowess possessed by these peoples. Patterns of international migration (or non-migration) of elite athletes may be influenced by these underlying assumptions. Third, the issue of ‘racial’ differentiation is the subject of significant debate within and outside academia. Some researchers argue that inherent physiological differences underlie the different sporting capabilities of large population groups, for example, with European whites being better built for swimming, while those of African background are better suited to sprinting (see Bejan, Jones & Charles 2010; Entine 2001). Conversely, critical social scientists reject many of these arguments, highlighting instead the role of deeper social factors – such as access to facilities and training, educational background and socialisation into particular sports – in directing different population groups, including migrant groups, into particular levels and types of sport participation (Carrington 1998, 2010; Sailes 1991). Despite these histories of exclusion and negative incorporation, sport also provides some of the strongest illustrations of cultural resistance and struggle involving ethnic minority and migrant populations. The international boycotting of sport relations with South Africa throughout the 1970s and 1980s helped to place significant pressure on the apartheid regime (Booth 1998). Elsewhere, in Italian football, black players (many of them hailing from other countries) have complained to the authorities on and off the park about their abusive treatment by stadium spectators. In some instances, players have picked up the ball during play to make their point (Guardian, 3 January 2013). Sports victories have also served to promote strong senses of ethno-national pride among non-white migrant populations. For example, in the 1970s and 1980s in the UK, the successes of the West Indian cricket team were strongly celebrated by migrant Afro-Caribbean populations who were living in the UK. Jamaican migrants demonstrated similar support for Usain Bolt and other elite Jamaican athletes who were successful at the London 2012 Olympics (see Beckles & Stoddart 1995). Moreover, we should not assume that racism towards migrant groups in sport and elsewhere is always ‘colour-coded’. For example, Jewish, Irish and Southern and Eastern European minority migrant groups have all experienced racist and prejudicial treatment in sport, as in wider society, especially in Global North contexts. In Australia, Southern European mi-

Resistance and struggles


Dual identities

Richard Giulianotti

grants formed successful soccer clubs reflecting their original national ties, for example, to Italy, Greece, Croatia, Serbia and Malta. Some elements within the majority Australian community thus came to depict the sport in highly racialised terms, as ‘wogball’ (Vamplew 1994). However, we should note also that, for many of these migrant groups, sport has been a focus for strong ethnic pride, and a space in which these communities might engage with the host society on a relatively more ‘level’ playing field (Finn 1994; Levine 1993). Additionally, for many migrant groups, sport allows for the construction of ‘dual identities’, which point to mixed forms of national and cultural identification. For example, in France, many sports participants and spectators who originate from the Maghreb identify with their host and ‘home’ nations. This was clear upon France’s 1998 World Cup victory in football, when many celebrating fans combined French and other national flags to show dual identification, and by the French national team itself, which included many players drawn from migrant North African communities (Dauncey & Hare 2000). In Germany, dual identification also occurs among second- and third-generation Turkish migrants. This is perhaps best mirrored in the growing number of elite football players from the Turkish-German community who have gone on to represent Germany in recent years. We now consider issues of national identity in greater detail.

National identity

Symbolic arena

The growth of modern sport was closely connected to strong forms of national identity and state-building throughout the late nineteenth and the twentieth centuries. Sport has thus been utilised by national elites and majority populations to symbolise and to ritualise particular forms of official or dominant national identity. Sport, in turn, has been one crucial symbolic arena within which migrant communities have sought to establish new forms of national identity, while experiencing strong pressures to assimilate into dominant models of nationality. In the New World, diverse groups of migrants have engaged in sport, with one strong consequence being the germination of distinctive forms of national solidarity. In the USA, for example, a special path (or Sonderweg) was taken in sport, as the new Americans developed their own sports (notably American football and baseball) in contrast to sports that were more widely played abroad, such as football (Roberts & Olsen 1989; see also ­Pieterse 2004a). The new sports provided the migrant communities arriving from across Europe with a new set of shared national-cultural interests, which quickly evolved into crucial symbolic reference points within the broader ‘invention’ of a sui generis, national, US tradition.

Sport and Migration in the Global Context


In South America, national assimilation was facilitated through the sport of football in the early twentieth century. For example, in Uruguay, the international successes of the national football team – winning Olympic gold medals in 1924 and 1928, then the inaugural World Cup – served to establish fresh and popular forms of national identification among a diverse population, which had swollen due to recent European immigration (Giulianotti 2000). Subsequently, throughout much of the twentieth century, sport has been strongly utilised by dominant populations to assimilate migrant peoples in the region. However, the process of assimilating migrant groups through sport has been far from absolute. Indeed, forms of national differentiation have remained through the retention of distinctive sports interests by migrants. In the USA, for example, the large migrant populations that landed from the mid-nineteenth century onwards, particularly from Europe, experienced strong socio-cultural pressures to abandon their old sports (especially football) and to adopt the all-American pastimes of baseball and, by the same token, American football. Nevertheless, significant pockets of sporting difference remained, notably in cities like St Louis where football teams and tournaments were enthusiastically organised (see Markovits & Hellerman 2001). In Australia, as noted earlier, Southern European migrants tended to favour football (or soccer), and set up their own clubs along lines of ethno-national identification. The football authorities in Australia endeavoured to eradicate violence involving some of these clubs through a strategy of enforced assimilation in which they required these teams to remove their ethno-national names and signifiers. However, most clubs continued to have distinctive associations with particular ethno-national communities (Hay 2001). In recent years, substantial sociological interest has focused on whether transnational processes – such as mass migration, along with the emergence of global media and commerce – have served to outmode the ideas of ‘the nation-state’ or ‘the national’. Beck (2000), for example, argues that the national is a ‘zombie category’, lacking in methodological or substantive relevance for sociological inquiry. Some analysts of globalisation have pronounced the ‘death’ of the nation-state, through the combined forces of global individualism, transnational corporations, worldwide communication systems and global culture (Ohmae 1995). The role of diasporic groups and transnational social relations has also been highlighted in terms of the perceived decline or demise of national identity (Appadurai 1996). The evidence from sport suggests that, while the nation-state and national identities are far from dead, they have certainly undergone profound changes, with migrant communities at the heart of those transformations. One feature has been the rise of sports that fall outside of ‘national traditions’ and which engage especially migrant or minority populations. For example, in the USA, support for major league soccer teams has expanded

Declining national identity?


Richard Giulianotti

particularly through Latino and other migrant interest in the sport. In Scandinavian countries such as Norway, cricket is one of the fastest-growing sports, due to the participation of growing South Asian communities.2 Overall, while the continuing significance of nation-states and national identity cannot be denied, there is little doubt that sport demonstrates the increasingly complex ways in which ‘the national’ is experienced and constructed, particularly in relation to migration. These contemporary transformations are best brought out in regard to socio-cultural readings of global change – an issue to which we now turn.

Socio-cultural aspects of globalisation theory

Cross-national hybridity

Many socio-cultural variants of globalisation theory have highlighted ‘action-orientated’ approaches and underlined the mark of cultural diversity, complexity and heterogenisation on contemporary global processes. Leading theories in this domain tend to be associated with keywords such as ‘creolisation’ and ‘hybridisation’ (see Hannerz 1992; Pieterse 2004b). The concept of glocalisation facilitates a nuanced reading of the balance between cultural divergence and convergence; or the interdependencies of homogenising and heterogenising processes. This section explores how these concepts help to explain the transnational aspects of sport vis-à-vis migration. Creolisation theory may be utilised to explore how peripheral societies are able to engage critically and selectively with global cultural forms (Hannerz 1992). Indeed, the latter are actively adapted by local social actors according to indigenous values, tastes and needs. In turn, some peripheral communities ‘talk back’ to the centre by germinating particular cultural forms or styles that become globally recognised and embraced. In sports, creolisation processes are evidenced in those peripheral societies that have adopted and adapted major sporting disciplines with great competitive success. Consider, for example, South American footballers, West Indian cricketers and Central American baseball players; all figure among the world’s leading players and teams within their respective sports. ‘Hybridisation’ refers to similar processes. Archetti (1998) skilfully deployed this concept to reveal how distinctive aspects and forms within Argentinian popular culture (notably football, polo and tango) have emerged dynamically from a hybrid national society that has been defined by an interplay between more established and more recent migrant communities. Another example of cross-national hybridity in sports is provided by ‘hip-hop ball’, which involves hip-hop culture and basketball and is played by young black 2


Sport and Migration in the Global Context


basketball players of French Caribbean or African extraction in the banlieue of France (Sudre 2014). The popular culture of these young people conveys their perspective that their urban conditions in cities such as Paris mirror those of African Americans in the urban ghettoes of the USA. Appadurai (1996) examines the relationship of diasporic communities to transnational popular culture, including sport. He argues that a new ‘diasporic public sphere’ is taking root through the interplay of migration and new forms of mediatisation. The rise of satellite (and subsequently, digital) television enables millions of migrants to re-engage with the media public spheres of their homelands, and indeed to create their own diasporic media platforms and content. The social applications of new communication technologies has also enabled second-, third- and fourth-generation migrants to explore new forms of identity construction vis-à-vis their parental homes. Sport provides one highly important domain within which this diasporic public sphere is constructed, for example, among Hispanic communities, which utilise satellite technologies to watch live football and baseball from their home nations. These kinds of arguments are critically extended by Giulianotti and Robertson (2006, 2007) in their applications of glocalisation theory. Giulianotti and Robertson (ibid.) highlight the role of migrants themselves in developing particular glocalisation strategies. The migrant groups that formed the basis of their studies were diverse Scottish football club supporters who had migrated to the USA and Canada. These migrants were understood as retaining a fundamental attachment to their ‘local’ culture (as denoted by their support for a Scottish team); and, this local culture was ‘deterritorialised’ in that the migration process itself showed how these emotional attachments lost their strict territorial specificities. The focus of the research was the way migrant supporter groups adapt their ‘local’ (Scottish football) cultural tastes, values and practices within the context of a powerful global (North American) cultural setting. The glocalisation strategies were understood with reference to trends towards homogenisation (i.e., fitting in with North American culture) and heterogenisation (continuing to differentiate from North American culture). The migrants were found to deploy both types of strategy in complex ways. For example, homogenisation was evidenced by the softening of rivalries with other club fans, due to the North American context, while heterogenisation occurred as the supporter networks established highly distinctive social ties and networks with officials from their favoured clubs. Ultimately, however, a pressing concern centred on the reproduction of differentiation; that is, on the capacity of these fan cultures to maintain their distinctive sport and cultural identities. Many migrant supporters stated that their children and grandchildren (the second and third generation) were effectively North American in identity, and thus showed relatively little interest in participating in Scottish football supporters’ clubs.

Globalisation strategies


Creative agency

Richard Giulianotti

While this study was focused on Scottish football fans in North America, its findings could potentially apply to many other kinds of migrant sport culture. Parallels could possibly be found among the diverse European and South American migrants in North America, Europe and Australasia who follow their ‘home’ football teams from afar; or South Asian cricket fans living in Europe or North America; or the European handball players who seek to set up their own clubs in other parts of the world. Overall, the socio-cultural components of globalisation theory help to register and explain the critical creative agency of migrant individuals and social groups in adapting, moulding and transforming sport according to context.

Concluding comments


Migration has been integral to the transnational diffusion and development of modern sport. Inevitably, crucial power relationships are at the heart of these processes. Theories of cultural imperialism are at their strongest when exploring in historical terms the international spread of sport, particularly British imperial games. Within specific nations, imperialism has further consequences in strongly underpinning the kinds of sporting relationships found between dominant/majority populations and dominated/migrant/ethnic minority communities. Moreover, the colonial and post-colonial contexts provide the crucial nexus within which forms of nation-building are attempted and nationality-making explored within sport. In contemporary times, however, the sport-migration interface provides a particularly vibrant domain for exploring the cultural complexities of globalisation. The broad argument here is that sport highlights how migrant communities have sought to contest their marginalisation and oppression, while developing and exploring their differentiated identities. Overall, the sport-migration interface is double-edged and marked by the interplay of dual processes of differentiation and integration, of critical agency and structural constraints. Thus, for example, migrant groups may reproduce their differentiated ethnic and national cultures by establishing ‘home sport’ clubs, such as Turkish football fan clubs in Germany and Austria, or Asian cricket clubs in Scandinavia or the Low Countries. Yet, at the same time, these clubs assist in the social integration of these migrant groups within the host society, helping them to find accommodation, work, advice on using the welfare state and so on. Similarly, in 1998 while French-African migrants celebrated their dual identities after the World Cup victory, many continued to experience extreme marginalisation, leading in part to nationwide riots in the French banlieues in 2005. In Germany, the national football team that headed to the World Cup finals

Sport and Migration in the Global Context


in 2010 was highly multicultural, featuring players of Bosnian, Brazilian, Ghanaian, Nigerian, Polish, Spanish, Tunisian and Turkish backgrounds. The German Football Association had also been running a public campaign entitled, ‘Football: Many Cultures, but a Single Passion’. Yet, a few months after the tournament, the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, insisted that policies of multiculturalism had ‘utterly failed’. To conclude, three research agendas are briefly set out that could be developed in regard to the sport-migration interface. First, in relation to statistical data collection, social scientists might trace and log the particular circuits of labour migration that arise across elite sports. Some research centres have initiated such work for single sports within specific regional contexts, for example, for European and African football (see Poli & Ravenel 2006; Bale 2004). A more comprehensive, multi-sport array of datasets would provide a fuller picture of sport migration. Second, in regard to cultural politics, we need to consider how globalisation and migration connect to the rise of free-market economics and commodification within sport and beyond. Most governments in the Global North have sought to restrict in-migration to relatively wealthy or skilled populations. Meanwhile, commodification processes have resulted in sport becoming increasingly expensive to access and to follow, especially gaining entry to prestigious events. The extent to which these forms of privilege overlap and interact within both the sporting and migratory spheres is worthy of future social scientific scrutiny. Third, in regard to cultural creativity, we need to explore how migrant communities directly impact sporting cultures within specific settings. How are sport cultures in host societies opened to or influenced by migrant communities? How do different migrant communities adapt and transform themselves through sport across the generations? One important aspect of such research would be to draw on historical studies of migration, in order to compare the sporting cultures of prior and contemporary migrant communities.

References Aizlewood, A., P. Bevelander & R. Pendakur (2006), ‘Recreational participation among ethnic minorities and immigrants in Canada and the Netherlands’, Journal of Immigrant and Refugee Studies 4 (3): 1-32. Appadurai, A. (1996), Modernity at Large. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Archetti, E. (1998), Masculinities. Oxford: Berg. Arrighi, G. (1994), The Long Twentieth Century: Money, Power and the Origin of Our Times. London: Verso. Bale, J. & J. Sang (1996), Kenyan Running. London: Frank Cass.

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Bale, J. (1991), The Brawn Drain. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Bale, J. (2004), ‘Three geographies of African footballer migration: Patterns, problems and postcoloniality’, in G. Armstrong & R. Giulianotti (eds), Football in Africa, Basingstoke: Palgrave. Beck, U. (2000), ‘The cosmopolitan perspective: The sociology of the second modernity’, Sociology 51 (1): 79-106. Beckles, H. McD. & B. Stoddart (eds) (1995), Liberation Cricket: West Indies Cricket Culture. Manchester: Manchester University Press. Bejan, A., E. C. Jones & J. D. Charles (2010), ‘The evolution of speed in athletics: Why the fastest runners are black and swimmers white’, International Journal of Design & Nature and Ecodynamics 5 (3): 199-211. Black, D. & J. Nauright (ed.) (1998), Rugby and the South African Nation. Manchester: Manchester University Press. Booth, D. (1998), The Race Game. London: Frank Cass. Carrington, B. (1998), ‘“Football’s coming home” But whose home? And do we want it? Nation, football and the politics of exclusion’, in A. Brown (ed.), Fanatics. London: Routledge. Carrington, B. (2010), Race, Sport and Politics. London: Sage. Chang, H.-J. (2002), Kicking Away the Ladder: Development Strategy in Historical Perspective. London: Anthem. Chang, H.-J. (2008), Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism. London: Bloomsbury. Dauncey, H. & G. Hare (2000) ‘World Cup France ‘98: Metaphors, meanings and values’, International Review for the Sociology of Sport 35 (3): 331-347. Entine, J. (2001), Taboo: Why Black Athletes Dominate Sports and Why We’re Afraid to Talk about it. New York: Public Affairs. Finn, G. P. T. (1994), ‘Sporting symbols, sporting identities’, in I. S. Wood (ed.), Scotland and Ulster. Edinburgh: Mercat Press. Frank, A. G. & B. Gills (1993), The World System: Five Hundred Years or Five Thousand. London: Routledge. Frank, A. G. (1967) Capitalism and Underdevelopment in Latin America. New York: Monthly Review. Giulianotti, R. & R. Robertson (2006), ‘Glocalization, globalization and migration: The case of Scottish football supporters in North America’, International Sociology 21 (2): 171-198. Giulianotti, R. & R. Robertson (2007), ‘Forms of glocalization: Globalization and the migration strategies of Scottish football fans in North America’, Sociology 41(1): 133-152. Giulianotti, R. & R. Robertson (2009), Globalization and Football. London: Sage. Giulianotti, R. (2000), ‘Built by the Two Varelas’, in G.P.T. Finn & R. Giulianotti (eds) Football Culture. London: Frank Cass. Guttmann, A. (1994), Games & Empires. New York: Columbia University Press. Hannerz, U. (1992), Cultural Complexity. New York: Columbia University Press. Hargreaves, J. (1986), Sport, Culture and Power. Cambridge: Polity.

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Hay, R. (2001), ‘Those bloody Croatians: Croatian soccer teams, ethnicity and violence in Australia, 1950-99’, in G. Armstrong & R. Giulianotti (eds), Fear and Loathing in World Football. Oxford: Berg. Henry, I. (2005), ‘Sport and multiculturalism: A European perspective’. Paper to the Centre d’Estudis Olímpics, University of Barcelona, 26 October. Holt, R. (1989), Sport and the British. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Krouwell, A., N. Boonstra, J. Duyvendak & L. Veldboer (2006), ‘A good sport? Research into the capacity of recreational sport to integrate Dutch minorities’, International Review for the Sociology of Sport 41 (2): 165-180. Leite Lopes, J. S. (1997), ‘Successes and contradictions in “multiracial” Brazilian football’, in G. Armstrong & R. Giulianotti (eds), Entering the Field. Oxford: Berg. Levine, P. (1993), Ellis Island to Ebbets Field: Sport and the American Jewish Experience. New York: Oxford University Press. Mangan, J. A. (1986), The Games Ethic and Imperialism. London: Viking. Marcano, A. J. & D. P. Fidler (1999), ‘The globalization of baseball’, Global Legal Studies Journal 6: 511-77. Marcano, A. J. & D. P. Fidler (2003), Stealing Lives. Indiana: University of Indiana Press. Markovits, A. S. & S. L. Hellerman (2001), Offside: Soccer and American Exceptionalism. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Miles, R. (1993), Racism after ‘Race Relations’. London: Routledge. Miller, T., D. Rowe, J. McKay & G. Lawrence (2001), Globalization and Sport. London: Sage. Moffett, J. (2003), Japanese Rules. London: Yellow Jersey. Ohmae, K. (1995), The End of the Nation State. London: HarperCollins. Perkin, H. (1992), ‘Teaching the nations how to play: Sport and society in the British Empire and Commonwealth’, in J. A. Mangan (ed.), The Cultural Bond: Sport, Empire, Society. London: Frank Cass. Pieterse, J. N. (2004a), ‘Hyperpower exceptionalism? Globalization the American way’, in U. Beck, N. Sznaider & R. Winter (eds), Global America? The Cultural Consequences of Globalization. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press. Pieterse, J. N. (2004b), Globalization and Culture. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. Poli, R. & L. Ravenel (2006), Annual Review of the European Football Players’ Labour Market. Neuchâtel: International Centre for Sports Studies (CIES). Putnam, R. (2000), Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community. New York: Simon and Schuster. Reiss, S. (1991), City Games. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Roberts, R. & J. Olsen (1989), Winning Is the Only Thing. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. Sailes, G. A. (1991), ‘The myth of black sports supremacy’, Journal of Black Studies 21: 480-487. Sudre, D. (2014), ‘Le hip-hop ball américain, une culture adolescente du basket en banlieue parisienne’, Agora Débats/Jeunesses 68 (in press).


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Taylor, C. (1997), The Beautiful Game: A Journey through Latin American Football. London: Orion. Theeboom, M., H. Schaillée & Z. Nols (2012), ‘Social capital development among ethnic minorities in mixed and separate sport clubs’, International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics 4 (1): 1-21. Tomlinson, J. (2002), Cultural Imperialism. London: Pinter. Vamplew, W. (1994), ‘“Wogball”: Ethnicity and violence in Australian soccer’, in R. Giulianotti & J. Williams (eds), Game without Frontiers. Aldershot: Avebury. Wallerstein, I. (1974), The Modern World System: Capitalist Agriculture and the Origins of the European World Economy in the Sixteenth Century. New York: Academic Press. Wallerstein, I. (2001), The Decline of American Power. New York: New Press. Walseth, K. & K. Fasting (2004), ‘Sport as a means of integrating minority women’, Sport in Society 7 (1): 109-129.

Key reading Bale, J. (1991), The Brawn Drain. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Guttmann, A. (1994), Games & Empires. New York: Columbia University Press. Marcano, A. J. & D. P. Fidler (2003), Stealing Lives. Indiana: University of Indiana Press.

About the author Richard Giulianotti is a professor of sociology at Loughborough University, UK, and professor II at Telemark University College, Norway. His main research interests are in the fields of sport, globalisation, migration, mega-events, development and peace, as well as crime, deviance and security. He has authored numerous books, including Football: A Sociology of the Global Game (1999); Sport: A Critical Sociology (2005); Ethics, Money and Sport (with Adrian Walsh, 2007); and Globalization and Football (with Roland Robertson, 2009). He recently co-edited special issues of the journals Urban Studies and the British Journal of Sociology on themes related to global sport. He has been awarded various grants from the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the European Commission and the Nuffield Foundation. In 2014 he began work as principal investigator on the two-year ESRC-funded research project ‘Sport for Development and Peace’.

Part 3 Regulation of Immigrant Incorporation

15  European Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories Patrick R. Ireland

Summary European policymakers have put a premium on immigrant incorporation since the mid-1970s, when oil shocks harbingered rapid economic deterioration in countries that had been importing foreign labour. Governments in all of the receiving countries prohibited additional immigration and announced that their task would thereafter be to incorporate their immigrant-origin residents. Since then, the broader institutions and policies associated with national welfare states – including the subset of them more directly aimed at fitting immigrants into host-society economic, social, and political life – have helped to determine the participation of immigrant-origin populations in host-society institutions. While commonly constructed typologies of national welfare states and incorporation regimes have serious shortcomings, the (non-)policies associated with those states and regimes have also moulded ethnic and other identities, influencing whether social control is loosened and conflict sparked. The ongoing restructuring of the welfare state and the transformation of migration into a contentious fixture of socio-economic reality are therefore tightly intertwined in contemporary European politics. Keywords: Europe, immigrant integration, national models, comparative social policy, welfare state

Introduction This chapter’s objective is to trace the evolving relationship between the welfare state and immigrant incorporation. The rationale and implications of several prominent typologies of national welfare states and incorporation regimes will be considered in turn. It is important to understand that there are problems attendant to such classifications, in no small measure due to the changes that they have undergone in recent decades. Incorporation is giving way to broader conceptions of integration that acknowledge


Caring strategies

Patrick R. Ireland

process, policy internalisation, and externalisation, and the ways in which policies steer the evolution of capacities and alliances. European host societies have distinctive ‘caring strategies’ that are inclusive or exclusionary and that stress individual or group needs. Cities and neighbourhoods often have their own strategies, however, and their importance and room for manoeuvre have grown. National models are not as meaningful as many scholars have thought. Policies at all levels have their own propensity to create or defuse conflict. Given the fixation in today’s Europe on social cohesion, it is imperative to investigate the connection between desired outcomes and the threats to social control that appear to drive policy as much, if not more than concern about immigrants’ equal economic, social, and political participation. Immigrant incorporation, by whatever name, has been a priority for European policymakers since the 1970s. When oil shocks heralded and precipitated rapid economic deterioration in countries that had been importing foreign labour, governments in the so-called ‘host societies’ prohibited additional immigration. They announced that their task would thereafter be to fit in the variegated immigrant-origin populations that had formed. That move could not help but implicate social policy systems. These systems encompass the policy sectors accounting for the official responses that directly and indirectly affect immigrants’ living conditions and participation in host-society institutions. National welfare states, therefore, constitute ‘powerful institutional forces embodying ideas and practices associated with inclusion, exclusion, membership, belonging, entitlement, and identity’ (Geddes 2003: 152). The restructuring of the welfare state and the transformation of migration from a putatively temporary phenomenon into a fixture of social reality stand as two of the most momentous developments in present-day European politics, and they are intertwined. The goal of this chapter is to examine both sides of that relationship – incorporation (the dependent variable) and the welfare state (the independent variable) – and their evolution. After a review of approaches to immigrant integration, the rationale and implications of several prominent typologies of national welfare states and incorporation regimes are considered in turn. The transformations that such classifications have been experiencing in recent decades are among the factors rendering them problematic. Both welfare states and incorporation regimes need to be unpacked, and the connections between incorporation and integration need to be explored. Given the current preoccupation with social cohesion, finally, it becomes imperative to delve into the connection between those desired outcomes and the threats to social control that appear to be impelling policy.

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


Immigrant incorporation It has now been almost four decades since Europeans awoke to the effectively permanent presence of their migrant-origin residents. During the economic turbulence of the 1970s, new labour recruitment ended. Research began to pay greater heed to the impact of migrant-origin populations on receiving societies in the areas of housing, education and job training, social welfare, and cultural and – less commonly – political life. The analytical tools employed came mostly from the classic schools of urban sociology and anthropology, Chicago and Manchester. Both had dealt substantially with migration-related issues, in the service of elites who saw them as ‘social problems’ (Favell 2001). Much of the European work in the 1970s and 1980s was commissioned by local, national, and, over time, European Community/Union officials. Such policy-relevant research put a premium on ‘hard’ data, which translated into a search for quantitative indicators and a predilection for applied, discrete investigations. Fine municipal and regional examples notwithstanding, comparable survey data and other statistics remained missing. Datasets reflected nationally or even locally specific ways of identifying migrants and ethnic minorities. The studies in question dealt with how migrants and their progeny fit into a given host society – what is normally referred to as ‘integration’. While it has been widely announced as a public policy goal, integration has rarely had the same or any agreed upon social or political definition. The problem remained academic as long as most studies were context specific, commissioned for social engineering purposes, and not intended for comparative analysis. Even when more objective scholarship and comparative studies began to emerge, little consensus developed over what integration entails. Sometimes, it has been a broad rubric covering any and all aspects of migrant settlement. At other times, it has been equated with coercive assimilation and set against multiculturalism. Imprecision about the concept’s meaning has sparked suggestions over the years that labels such as ‘acculturation’, ‘accommodation’, ‘insertion’, and ‘incorporation’ serve as replacements. Increasingly, a distinction has been drawn between integration as immigrants’ equal participation in host institutions and the form of integration assumed to flow from it, which is convergence in terms of immigrants’ value orientation, their identification with the host society, and, by extension, overall social harmony. The former dimension, frequently labelled ‘incorporation,’ has been the more studied. The celebrated Chicago School of sociology held that at least three generations were required for migrants to become fully assimilated Americans during the years before the Second World War. In the contemporary context, a gradual, linear ‘melting in’ has begun to appear less and less likely.

Imprecise conceptual meaning


Measures and indicators

Patrick R. Ireland

Support has built for the notion of segmented assimilation, whereby immigrants and other minority groups in the USA are seen to experience gradual intergenerational socio-economic improvement and movement toward ‘parity of life chances’ with the native-born population (Alba 2005), along with the possible and deliberate preservation of cultural membership and values and continued economic attachment to ethnic communities (Portes & Zhou 1993). This view has gained European adherents, notwithstanding a widespread reluctance to embrace both the term ‘assimilation’ and America’s historically laissez-faire posture toward immigrant settlement (Schmitter Heisler 2000). Unsurprisingly, progress or regression in incorporation across migrant generations has been a major theme – often with the goal of determining whether classical or segmented assimilation theory better explains observed outcomes and the part played by ethnicity in producing them. Other prevalent research topics have been ethnic businesses, neighbourhood effects, ethnic enclaves, and the reactions of native-stock residents to immigration and immigrants. Much of this empirical work has been used to construct quantitative measures of incorporation in various domains. Establishing levels of structural incorporation has entailed both objective and subjective assessments of labour market, income, unemployment, educational, and housing conditions; ratios of immigrant concentrations and spatial distribution; the frequency of immigrants’ contact with native-stock inhabitants; and crime rates. Political and cultural incorporation has been weighed with reference to inclusion within host-society organisations, patronage of recreational and cultural offerings, rates of naturalisation and dual citizenship, levels of intermarriage, use of homeland media, degree of fluency in the hostsociety language, and formal and informal involvement in political happenings (Ireland 2004, 2010). Inter-generational research has concentrated on the ‘migrant life cycle’ and ‘stages of integration’, with a host of ‘suitable indicators’ devised for each (Baldwin-Edwards 2004). Another favoured activity has been the construction of index scores and rankings of host societies by coding the liberality or restrictiveness of their legislation covering non-nationals. The apex of this approach is reached with the Migration Integration Policy Index (MIPEX, A project spearheaded by the British Council and the Migration Policy Group in Brussels, the MIPEX includes 148 policy indicators covering seven policy areas that ‘shape a legally resident third-country national’s (migrant’s) journey to full citizenship’. These are labour market mobility and access, family reunification, long-term residence, political participation, access to nationality, and anti-discrimination. The MIPEX covers 25 EU member states, Canada, Norway, and Switzerland, as well as (since 2010) Australia, Japan, and the USA. In the literature the selection of incorporation/integration indicators and the choice of analytical techniques have varied with the scholars in-

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


volved, the types of data available, and the interests of those funding the research. Incorporation has normally been gauged according to the status of the immigrant population as compared to the native population. Mikael Hjerm (2005: 121), for example, has argued that successful incorporation ‘can be defined by “equality” in terms of living standards (in a broad sense) between groups of people regardless of where they were born’.

Typologies of welfare states The task of preventing or eliminating such differences – or at least levelling opportunities so as to reach more equal conditions – has generally fallen to the social policies and institutions that comprise European welfare states. There are wide cross-national variations in those policies and institutions, as well as in views on the ‘meaning, desirability, distribution, and scope of welfare’ (Xu 2007: 89). Accordingly, scholarship has produced an array of classifications of welfare states. Gøsta Esping-Andersen (1990) devised the best-known and most-cited typology: liberal, corporatist, and social democratic ‘worlds of welfare capitalism’. His taxonomy revolves around (i) the degree to which social rights provide a decent standard of living independently of market forces (decommodification) and (ii) the extent to which conditions of eligibility and benefit levels divide a given society (stratification). He sees Britain as being closest to the liberal type in Europe, scoring low on the first (i) dimension and high on the second (ii) dimension. Sweden most resembles the social democratic type, where the scores are reversed. In between are the corporatist regimes, epitomised by Germany. ‘This typology has proved its analytical practicability’, Andreas Kammer, Judith Niehues, and Andreas Peichl (2012: 458) noted recently, ‘and is stable over time’. It remains widely used in comparative studies (see Crepaz & Damron 2009; Deeming & Hayes 2012; Mau & Burkhardt 2009), ‘although it has been challenged extensively on empirical and analytical grounds’ (Rice 2013: 93). The corporatist regime ideal-type, sometimes referred to as the continental or conservative welfare state, has been applied to the most heterogeneous cluster of countries and has generated much debate, as has its neglect of issues important to gender scholars (Saxonberg 2013). With Esping-Andersen’s analysis and that of his numerous critics taken into consideration, the most reasonable conservative ‘membership list’ contains Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands. They differ significantly amongst themselves, of course, and the Dutch system has on occasion been considered either a social democratic regime or in a separate category by itself. Italy and its Southern European neighbours, meanwhile, have been described as ‘familial’ welfare states, marked by patriarchal in-

Array of classifications


Esping-Andersen’s categorisation

Patrick R. Ireland

come concentration, strong extended family networks, low participation of ­women in the labour market, and high unemployment among younger men ­(Ireland 2011). If Esping-Andersen’s categorisation is brought closer to earth and given more nuance, the following typology results (see table 15.1, column A): – liberal welfare states (Britain), characterised by weak labour market regulation, a low level of social benefits and a predilection for meanstested monetary transfers; – mixed liberal-continental welfare states (Ireland, Switzerland), characterised by weak labour market regulation, a moderate level of worklinked social benefits, a mix of means-tested transfers and social insurance, the male breadwinner model (nuclear family) and a tendency to preserve existing stratification patterns (based on, e.g., class, ethnicity, and gender); – continental or conservative welfare states, characterised by strong labour market regulation, a high level of work-linked social benefits, social insurance, and a tendency to preserve existing stratification patterns (again based on, e.g., class, ethnicity and gender). This category can be further subdivided into four forms: continental republican welfare states (France, Belgium-Wallonia), characterised by centralisation and lower levels of corporatism and familism; continental exclusionary welfare states (Austria, Germany, Luxembourg), characterised by corporatism and a strong male breadwinner model; continental inclusive welfare states (Belgium-Flanders, the Netherlands), characterised by corporatism or cooperative policymaking and lower levels of familism; and continental Mediterranean welfare states (Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain), characterised by both the male breadwinner model and familism, lower levels of social benefits, and a predilection for nonmeans-tested transfers; – social democratic welfare states (Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden), characterised by strong labour market regulation, a high level of residence-based social benefits, and universalism/comprehensiveness.

Typologies of incorporation regimes Like welfare states, the approaches that host societies take to integrate their immigrant-origin populations have been classified in various ways. Incorporation is not just a goal for society, Adrian Favell (2003: 15) observes, ‘it is also something a government sets out to achieve’. The national models that have been identified include the ‘rules and norms that govern immigrants’ possibilities to become a citizen, to acquire residence and work permits, and to participate in economic, cultural, and political life’ (Sainsbury 2006: 230).

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


The starting point has usually been host societies’ historical experiences with migration, the types and backgrounds of their immigrants, and the kinds of policies that they have adopted toward migration (i.e., admissions and recruitment) policies. Thus, a distinction is made between traditional countries of immigration (with France being the only possible European example), countries where temporary guest workers or other contract labourers predominate (Austria, Germany, and Switzerland) and countries with (former) colonial migrants (Belgium, Britain, France, the Netherlands, and Sweden) (see Castles & Miller 2009). When it comes to responses to immigrant reception and settlement policies, the logic guiding the process of classifying host societies is somewhat different. Early typologies, which stressed different migration ‘idioms’ and traditions of citizenship and nationhood, nonetheless yielded a somewhat similar clustering of countries: the ethnic regime that valued blood ties and ascriptive identities (Austria, Germany, and Switzerland), the republican regime that expected immigrants’ complete assimilation (France), the non-French imperial regime that reflected years of dealing with colonial subjects (Britain and the Netherlands) and the multicultural regime that embraced ethnic diversity (Sweden). Included as well was the inchoate regime found in ‘new’ immigration countries (Greece, Italy, Portugal, and Spain) (see Baldwin-Edwards & Schain 1994). Yasemin Soysal (1994) formulated an influential host-society typology based on the rules of membership, rights, legal status, provisions for immigrant organisational activity, access to and use of public-sector resources, and modes of participation in political and social life and the labour market. The regime types that emerge from her analysis are the corporatist (Sweden and the Netherlands), individualist or liberal (Britain and Switzerland), statist (France), and mixed statist-corporatist (Germany). The placement of Britain and corporatist welfare states like differentialist Germany and the multicultural Netherlands has proved the most contentious. Other scholars have concentrated on multiculturalism. Going beyond institutions and policies that favour the expression of diverse cultures by bestowing rights on specific groups, this approach considers the extent to which ethno-religious diversity is actively sustained through the structure and implementation of incorporation strategies more broadly. Do they target and support such collective identities? European host societies deemed to have ‘modest’ multicultural policies include Britain, the Netherlands (at least until recently), and Sweden. ‘Weak to modest’ multicultural policies have been seen to characterise the rest of Scandinavia, Belgium, and Italy. ‘Weak’ multicultural policies, finally, have typically been found in Austria, France, Germany, Greece, Spain, and Switzerland (Banting & Kymlicka 2003; see Winter 2010).



Patrick R. Ireland

Even while broadening to encompass policies toward ethnic diversity as well as toward settlement more broadly, the typologies developed of ‘national models’ have not differed greatly. Subject to spirited criticisms of late, they have nonetheless retained their sway in the literature (see Mouritsen 2012; Scholten 2011). They typically distinguish among countries according to how inclusive they are of immigrants as individuals and how accepting of ethnic group rights, as well as whether they do so actively or passively. Focusing on those dimensions yields the following typology of integration regimes (see table 15.1, column B): – inclusive pluralism (passive approach to inclusion, acceptance of ethnic groups as permanent residents); – exclusionary liberalism (passive, effectively exclusionary approach with focus on individual assimilation); – assimilationism (active approach to inclusion, focus on individual assimilation); – differentialism (active approach to exclusion, focus on individual, employed immigrants and their status as distinct identity groups, with ethnic preferences in place); – multiculturalism (active approach to inclusion, acceptance of ethnic groups as permanent residents, with emphasis on their cultural emancipation as a means to integration); – emerging (passive approach that ends up being effectively exclusionary, with focus on individual employed immigrants and their status as distinct identity groups, with ethnic preferences in place).

Putting typologies together

Costs and benefits

The relationship between national welfare states and incorporation regimes is necessarily a close one. The areas in which settlement policies operate fall under the social policy umbrella and reflect the same distinctive caring strategies. In addition to more or less formal efforts, there are many other social policies that were never designed with immigrants in mind but that have considerable influence on their incorporation. Welfare states and incorporation regimes act together as ‘filters’ modulating immigrants’ chances for participation in host societies (Bommes & Geddes 2000). That linkage has been examined first and foremost to assess the costs and benefits of immigrants. They sometimes appear as passive victims of both ‘welfare chauvinism’ and the negative effects of market-oriented economic reforms. On the other hand, immigrants have also been blamed for eroding support for the welfare state, when its guarantee of access is deemed illegitimate in natives’ eyes. Related lines of inquiry have looked into whether multicultural policies harm or hurt the welfare state (Banting & Kymlicka 2003).

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


When the causal direction has been flipped, conclusions about the joint impact of various welfare states and incorporation regimes on immigrants’ life trajectories have focused largely on the economic aspects. Studies have examined the incentives and disincentives that welfare systems create for immigrant incorporation into the labour market (see Nannestad 2007). Another popular subject has been whether the type of welfare regime affects the likelihood of immigrants’ inclusion into social policies, defined in terms of the benefits accorded them (see Xu 2007). Keith Banting (2000) has maintained that both conservative (e.g., Germany) and social democratic (e.g., Sweden) welfare states have instituted more restrictive immigration controls but have been more generous in extending benefits to immigrants. Liberal welfare states (e.g., Britain) have allowed more immigration but have been more likely to curb immigrants’ access to benefits. Along a parallel vein, Silvia Dörr and Thomas Faist (1997) have argued that the interaction between immigrants’ legal positions and the institutional framework of each welfare state determines the extent and nature of coverage afforded to immigrants. In short, then, the ‘interplay of welfare and immigration policy regimes has produced distinctive patterns of immigrants’ social rights’ (Sainsbury 2006: 240). Column D in table 15.1 bears out that line of reasoning, setting up a range of patterns: – liberal welfare states and inclusive pluralist incorporation regimes, yielding weak state efforts to effect incorporation and acceptance that it will be ethnic-group based; – mixed liberal-continental welfare states and exclusionary liberal incorporation regimes, yielding weak state efforts to effect incorporation and expectations that it will be individual; – continental republican welfare states and assimilationist incorporation regimes, yielding geographically defined structural policies to effect incorporation and expectations that it will be individual and based on social class membership and residence; – continental exclusionary welfare states and differentialist incorporation regimes, yielding class-based structural policies to effect incorporation in a context of ethnic preferences; – continental inclusive welfare states and multicultural incorporation regimes, yielding a focus on political-cultural incorporation policies and an emphasis on ethnic group membership; – continental Mediterranean welfare states and emerging incorporation regimes, yielding weak, embryonic state efforts to effect incorporation in a context of ethnic preferences; – social democratic welfare states and multicultural incorporation regimes, yielding a balance of structural and political-cultural incorporation policies and an emphasis on ethnic group membership.

Patterns of immigrants’ social rights


Patrick R. Ireland

It is important to note at this juncture that there are also other sources of differential inclusion and exclusion across European host societies. European integration has gradually extended equal social protection to citizens of EU member states living outside of their homelands. The EU has been playing a growing but still far from decisive role in shaping member states’ policies towards so-called ‘third-country nationals’ (TCN). EU agreements are gradually replacing bilateral migration treaties that privileged some TCNs, yet the effects of those treaties linger. EU Directive 2003/109/ EC on the status and rights of TCNs has so far failed to register significant advances (Köklü 2011; Tsourdi 2011). Also still varying across European host societies are the rules and regulations that govern the acquisition of formal citizenship and permanent residency permits, which guarantee immigrants equal access to most social benefits. The EU has frowned on ethnic preferences, and member state Germany eventually opted to treat its ethnic German newcomers like other immigrants. Then again, in Southern European welfare states, which are marked by higher levels of familism, such preferences remain a fact in practice if not in law (Sciortino 2004; Ireland 2011). By regulating access to social benefits, welfare states have favoured certain types of migration from third countries over others. Martin Paldam (2007) has noted that since the immigration stoppages of the mid-1970s, ‘humanitarian’ reasons have supplanted economic reasons in determining admissions into Northern Europe. Instead of immigrant workers, refugees, asylum seekers, and family members have legally entered. Together with the institutions of the welfare state, this ‘adverse selection’ has hindered incorporation into labour markets. In Southern Europe, meanwhile, economic motives continue to drive the majority of immigration flows. While recognised refugees normally stand on par with citizens in terms of social rights, asylum seekers and undocumented immigrants find themselves in a tenuous and vulnerable situation everywhere. Skilled workers, finally, have become the object of intense competition among European countries and enjoy a privileged position in all of them.

From outputs to outcomes

Policy differences’ consequences

In the vast majority of cases, analyses of the relationship between welfare states and incorporation trajectories have stopped at the perceived effects of legal and social rights on immigrants’ participation. In other words, the emphasis has been on rights and policies (outputs) and not on actual outcomes. That the gap between the two can be important has not been lost on some scholars, however, as recent research has indicated. Over a decade and a half ago, Thomas Faist (1996) pointed to the possible incorporation consequences of policy differences. Faist posited that

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


highly regulated labour markets in social democratic welfare states like Sweden made it likely that immigrants would face more difficulty accessing those markets but less risk of economic deprivation. In liberal welfare states like the USA and, to a certain extent, Britain, where labour market regulations and the welfare safety net were both weaker, newcomers would find it easier to find paid work. Their jobs were apt to be low paying, though, and their risks of economic deprivation correspondingly higher. The welfare state of the host society would result in different sets of challenges to immigrants. Echoing Faist’s argument, Mikael Hjerm (2005) has tested the notion, widespread in the migration studies field, that social democratic welfare states are best able to make up for immigrants’ problematic access to labour markets. He concentrates on labour market participation, maintaining that while full participation in it is no panacea, ‘it is at least one of the linchpins to avoid marginalisation’ (Hjerm 2005: 122). Immigrants in Sweden have faced a greater risk than their native-stock counterparts of working in temporary positions and joining the ranks of the unemployed. Whereas the universal Swedish welfare state still operates as a powerful force for immigrant inclusion, despite restrictions introduced in the 1990s, it cannot equalise the situation for immigrants. That said, on most indicators second-generation immigrants do approach parity with their peers who have Swedish-born parents. Relying on OECD data, Peter Nannestad (2007) concludes that immigrants in more generous welfare states like the Netherlands, Denmark, and Sweden have been less successful in gaining access to the labour market. Germany fares better than the Nordic countries, and excess unemployment of immigrants is even lower in ­liberal Britain. Connections have similarly been made between policy outputs and incorporation outcomes involving access to social welfare benefits. The level of immigrants’ use of social policy offerings has only lately won currency as a more meaningful measure of incorporation, which is considered higher when immigrants’ utilisation of benefits more closely matches that of the population overall. The task thus becomes determining how much immigrants participate in social transfer programmes, the impact of such transfers on ‘their ability to maintain a socially acceptable standard of living compared with the rest of the population’, and the extent to which any identified ‘divergences are related to different immigration regimes’ (Morissens & Sainsbury 2005: 655). A staple of social democratic thought is that European welfare states, by compensating for the consequences of unequal market positions, should ensure the social citizenship of all members of a given population. Europe has the planet’s lowest poverty rates, and social policies have been a major force in reducing social disadvantage (see Kammer, Niehues, & Peichl 2012).

Use of social policy offerings


Patrick R. Ireland

Table 15.1 European welfare state regimes and incorporation regimes A. Types of B. Incorporation welfare state regimes Liberal Inclusive pluralism • Inclusive-passive • Acceptance of ethnic groups as permanent residents

C.  H  ost societies Britain

Mixed liberalcontinental

Exclusionary liberalism • Exclusionary-passive • Focus on individual assimilation

Ireland Switzerland

Assimilationism • Inclusive-active • Focus on individual assimilation

BelgiumWallonia France

– Continental exclusionary

Differentialism • Exclusionary-active • Focus on individuals • Ethnic preferences

Austria Germany Luxembourg

– Continental inclusive

Multiculturalism • Inclusive-active • Acceptance of ethnic groups

BelgiumFlanders Netherlands

Continental or conservative – Continental republican

– Continental Emerging regime Mediterranean • Exclusionary-passive • Focus on individuals • Ethnic preferences

Greece Italy Portugal Spain

Social democratic

Denmark Finland Norway Sweden

Multiculturalism • Inclusive-active • Acceptance of ethnic groups

D.  Outputs and expected outcomes • Weak incorporation efforts • Ethnic-group-based incorporation • Strong labour market absorption • High risk of poverty • Weak incorporation efforts • Individual incorporation • Strong, differentiated labour market absorption • High risk of poverty

• Focus on territorial, structural incorporation • Individual, class-based incorporation • Moderate labour market absorption • Moderate risk of poverty • Focus on class-based structural incorporation • Ethnic-based exclusions • Moderate, differentiated labour market absorption • Moderate risk of poverty • Focus on politicalcultural incorporation • Ethnic-group-based incorporation • Weak labour market absorption • Low risk of poverty • Weak, evolving incorporation efforts • Ethnic-based exclusions • Strong, differentiated labour market absorption • High risk of poverty • Structural and politicalcultural incorporation efforts • Ethnic-group-based incorporation • Weak labour market absorption • Very low risk of poverty

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


The socio-economic outcomes associated with the aforementioned patterns of outputs produced by the interrelationship between welfare states and incorporation regimes, in sum, appear as follows (see table 15.1, columns C and D): – strong, relatively rapid labour market absorption and high risk of poverty (Britain); – strong, differentiated, relatively rapid labour market absorption and high risk of poverty (Ireland, Switzerland); – moderate labour market absorption and moderate risk of poverty (Belgium-Wallonia, France); – moderate, differentiated labour market absorption and moderate risk of poverty (Austria, Germany, Luxembourg); – weak labour market absorption and low risk of poverty (Belgium-Flanders, the Netherlands); – strong, differentiated labour market absorption and high risk of poverty (Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain); – weak labour market absorption and very low risk of poverty (Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden). These expected outcomes have been confirmed to some extent. Yet as welfares states and incorporation regimes have interacted, their effects have had both ‘reinforcing and conflicting effects’ (Sainsbury 2006: 239-240). Reality, moreover, can deviate greatly from formal rights. Authorities at all levels of governance enjoy room for manoeuvre, influencing how rights are put into practice on the ground. The result can be either greater generosity or greater restrictions. Among the shortcomings of the existing literature, Ann Morissens and Diane Sainsbury (2005: 638) agree, is that there is rarely any distinction made between ‘formal and substantive social rights’ – the latter being what is referred to here as actual outcomes. The authors rely on the Luxembourg Income Study, a cross-national dataset with information about household income sources in more than 20 countries, as well as Esping-Andersen’s tripartite division of welfare states based on their decommodifying and stratifying effects. Morissens and Sainsbury (ibid.) find greater than expected variation among liberal and social democratic welfare states. Poverty rates for ethnic minorities and immigrants are lowest in Sweden, but liberal Britain ranks second in terms of decommodification. Social democratic Denmark scores lower than expected, bunching together with corporatist France and Germany. The picture is more complicated with respect to stratification, as social programmes vary in their ability to ensure an adequate standard of living and to avoid a sharp dichotomy between the poor and the rest of society. Surprisingly, France and Germany exhibit the narrowest gap between the income packages of non-nationals and nationals. On the other hand, Ruud Koopmans (2010: 1), who also employs Esping-Andersen’s typology,



Patrick R. Ireland

finds that multicultural policies in Belgium, the Netherlands, and Sweden have led to worse results in terms of migration labour market participation, spatial segregation, and incarceration rates than in countries with ‘more restrictive or assimilationist integration policies (Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France) or a relatively lean welfare state (the United Kingdom)’.

The limitations of existing approaches In addition to empirical research projects contesting the expected outcomes of social policies and incorporation regimes – and disagreeing amongst themselves – there are key weaknesses in the ways that both sides of that relationship have been treated. Welfare states and incorporation regimes are almost always taken to imply national models, yet sub-national variations and the decentralisation of social policies have made more complex formulations necessary. Incorporation itself also needs to be examined in terms of more than just absorption into labour markets and utilisation of social benefits. Disaggregating the welfare state

Non-nationcentred structures

‘Welfare states are nation-states’, remarked Abram de Swaan (1994: 102), and most research has assumed the importance of the national level. This tendency reflects in part the extent to which ‘national welfare states have turned into shields for mobilizing against [economic] integration’ (Leibfried 2000: 45). Central governments have latched onto immigration as a means of reasserting the relevance and power of the nation-state, a venture that has likewise entailed underwriting reams of academic work that have reinforced the centrality of national models. These models apply only awkwardly to certain European cases, however. In new migration countries with ‘familial’ welfare systems like Italy, Spain, and Portugal, state penetration into the society and the market has been relatively weak and inconsistent. ‘Non-nation-centred structures of social integration’, affecting those of both native and immigrant backgrounds, have been emerging (Favell 2003: 34). The social rights of immigrants everywhere, as already noted, fluctuate according their entry category, bilateral treaties signed between host and homeland governments, and time spent in the new country of work and residence. In table 15.1, column C, Belgium’s two major regions, Flanders and Wallonia, have been classified separately. Federalisation was in full swing in Belgium by the late 1970s and deepened in the 1980s. Most social assistance and immigrant admissions policies have remained under central government purview. Responsibility for ‘welcoming’ policy and employment issues falls to the regions (Brussels, Flanders, and Wallonia). Education is

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


a joint duty of the municipalities, the provinces, the federal state, and the private (in effect, Catholic) school network, although the linguistic communities (French-, Dutch-, and German-speaking) are in charge of curricula, day-to-day management, and financing, as well as cultural affairs in general. In heavily Catholic Dutch-speaking areas, notions of charity and carrier heterogeneity have combined to produce acceptance of a pluralistic approach to social welfare in which religious and other cultural identities are deemed both worthy of public support and a boon to incorporation into the all-important labour market. In Wallonia, by contrast, a Frenchstyle republican approach stressing universal, individual rights and a Socialist approach stressing class identity have blended with broader social policies designed to eliminate inequities in employment, housing, health care, and social exclusion in general. In bilingual Brussels the two perspectives exist side by side (see Cantillon, Popelier & Mussche 2010; compare Béland & Lecours 2010). How realistic is it, then, to speak of a national Belgian welfare model? For more than three decades, in fact, external and internal pressures have strained welfare states across Europe. Several common themes have emerged: greater emphasis on ensuring that social security systems do not impede the reduction of unemployment, increased pressure for people to make their own provisions for welfare, and a more dispersed funding base for public welfare schemes. Just as notably, national governments have transferred social policy implementation (and sometimes policy formulation) to their sub-national counterparts. The process has varied widely from country to country, but virtually everywhere, national governments have been decentralising substantial decision-making and implementation powers, transferring them to officials at the state and local levels. In federal Germany, where the welfare state has rested heavily on a tight network of subsidised non-profit associations, the already present diversity in state and local policies has only increased in recent years. Even in a welfare state like the Netherlands, where centrally coordinated national policies have predominated, decentralisation has changed the logic of s­ ocial ­policymaking. The intention has been to shed responsibility for dealing with a range of budget-busting social challenges, even while trumpeting the shift as a way to bring policymaking closer to citizens. Free-market forces wary of monopolies and big government have fuelled the drive to reduce the control of central authorities. So, too, have communitarians, Greens, and feminists, who wax ecstatic about the value of small-scale politics and organisations. The process of welfare state decentralisation has enhanced the role of regional, state, provincial, and local institutions and officials. Simultaneously, it has widened their room for manoeuvre and confronted them with tasks for which they lack the experience, administrative capacity, funding, and personnel resources to perform.

External and internal pressures


Patrick R. Ireland

Disaggregating the incorporation regime


Within important constraints, authorities at those sub-national levels have managed to put their spin on social policies and thereby on immigrant incorporation trajectories. The same broader political and economic trends and events that have forced modifications in national welfare states have forced modifications in national incorporation models. Despite the similar pressures, consequences on the ground need not be the same, thanks to the institutional differences that ‘shape the national and urban landscape’ (Schmitter Heisler 1998: 21). Like the trials and tribulations associated with immigrant-origin populations, responses to them have differed across regions, cities, and neighbourhoods, just as they have across time and national boundaries. The ‘internalisation’ of incorporation policies has been visible across the continent. In fact, European cities and regions have devised ‘explicit and pro-active integration policies, often in the absence of national policies, using their own instruments and resources and thereby making pressure for such national policies’ (Penninx, Garcés-Mascareñas & Scholten 2005: 6). The trend has been clear in established host societies like traditionally centralised France, the Netherlands, and Sweden and has only intensified in federal Austria, Germany, and Switzerland. The strengthening of regional and local control in Belgium has already been discussed. Newer countries of immigration like Italy and Spain have also seen cities and regions take on responsibility for managing immigrants’ settlement, compelled by the failure of central governments to attend to their needs (Calavita 2005). Several differentialist, emerging, and even multicultural incorporation regimes (the Dutch and the Danish in particular) do appear to have been trending in a more assimilationist direction, albeit from far different starting points. The introduction of mandatory civic integration programmes for newcomers in many EU member states has been repeatedly mistaken for policy convergence or evidence of spreading Europeanisation (see Carrera 2006), even though their content differs cross-nationally and their defined objective is to inculcate migrants into national and local ways of life (see Wallace Goodman 2010). There are other reasons to unpack national incorporation regimes. As has been seen, typologies of them have tended to be pitched at very high levels of abstraction and generality (Rice 2013). Categorising key cases like Britain and the Netherlands is problematic, inconvenient Belgium and understudied Luxembourg are often simply omitted, and France is almost always left sitting by itself in a cell. It has never been easy to fit nation-states into just one type, furthermore, and that task has only grown more burdensome. The more nuanced typology presented in table 15.1 is open to criticism for splitting Belgium in half (or for not splitting it into three or four) and for its placement of Ireland, Switzerland, and

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


perhaps even Denmark in several respects. (Britain is alone, although it could be joined by the USA were the analysis not limited to Western ­Europe.) Welfare states accommodate a wide variety of providers and encompass a wide variety of policies. The actors include agencies of the state itself, sub-national and local officials, non-profit associations, private markets, and informal networks. Policies affecting immigrant-origin populations can be direct (targeting them) or indirect (intended to affect all members of a community or all in a particular sector). Policies against social disadvantage that in principle aim at the general population can target specific groups in practice and be defined according to socio-economic indicators, national origin, ethnicity/race, or territory. Anti-discrimination policies can tackle intentional or incidental forms of intolerance. In a nod to this pluralism, some researchers have disaggregated incorporation regimes. For more than a decade, scholars have been assessing incorporation with respect to multiple national groups in a single host society (e.g., Davegos 2001), one age cohort in a single host society (e.g., Simon 2003), multiple national groups in one or more policy sectors in a number of countries (e.g., Crul & Vermeulen 2003), and so on. Han Entzinger (2000) grouped policies that comprise incorporation regimes according to the domain in which they operate – legal-political, cul­tural, and socio-economic – and to whom they are directed – individuals and groups. The outcome is a six-cell typology that includes equal rights, group rights, liberal pluralism, and equal opportunity or equity. Inspired by Entzinger’s effort at regime disassembly, Gary Freeman (2004: 945) conceives of incorporation as the ‘product of the intersection of migrant aspirations and strategies with regulatory frameworks in four domains – state, market, welfare, and culture’. The independence and complexity of these arenas mean that one cannot speak of national frameworks but only of looser, less cohesive ‘syndromes’. How telling, even so, that Freeman ends up constructing a typology that groups those syndromes in a very familiar way: Sweden and the Netherlands go together, and Alpine and Southern European host-society clusters emerge. France, once more, stands alone. In spite of the need for disaggregated analysis, the pull of national models remains strong. Their many drawbacks do not mean that they do not exist, Christophe Bertossi (2010: 1572) argues, ‘because the reality that scholars observe is in fact saturated with “modelized” thoughts and “modelizing” practices’. Thus do they continue to ‘differentiate the direction, content, and the intensity of integration policy’ (Schain 2010: 206). Increasingly prominent, EU research sponsorship has largely reproduced the dysfunctional aspects of national-level research in its self-legitimising, normative biases.

Six-cell typology


Patrick R. Ireland

From incorporation to integration

Segregationist tendencies

The hold of the national can be explained in part by problems with the notion of incorporation. As mentioned above, researchers have been preoccupied with immigrants’ equal participation at the individual and group levels in the socio-economic and political-cultural realms – that is, with incorporation. In the back of researchers’ and policymakers’ minds as well, however, has often been cultural and value convergence and concord at the macro or societal level – that is, integration. By now, it has become apparent to scholars that it is not enough to study only incorporation results in the context of labour markets and social welfare benefit schemes. In supposedly inclusive Sweden, exclusion can be seen in all of T. H. Marshall’s areas of citizenship: civil, social, and political (Hjerm 2005). A relationship might well exist between those three areas. Whereas the weak British welfare state might facilitate incorporation into the labour market, for example, it could simultaneously generate strong incentives for immigrants to invest in their families, ethnic groups, and other compensatory vehicles and thus stoke ‘segregationist tendencies’ (Nannestad 2007: 521). Tentative steps have been taken to assess policy outcomes in the area of socio-cultural incorporation/integration (see Ersanilli & Koopmans 2012). By assuming that integration means incorporation, which means blending into host-society structures and institutions, most quantitative studies define any and all forms of segregation, no matter under what circumstances they have arisen, as barriers and thus ‘bad’. In truth, it is open to argument whether an objective difference necessarily implies inequality and an absence of inclusion, or whether homogeneity necessarily signifies integration and equality (Garson & Thoreau 1999). If differentials matter, at what point do they become important? Marginalisation and poverty are shaped by a host of measures and systems of distribution and are, in a sense, products of the interaction between those mechanisms and policies. Even liberal, residual welfare states mediate the class, race, ethnic, and gender relations that constitute society, which immigrants enter and alter. Conversely, a stronger, more comprehensive policy effort does not necessarily result in better incorporation. Despite a far greater investment of effort and resources, Dutch policymakers have been less successful than their German counterparts in erasing discrepancies between those of native and immigrant stock in employment, housing, residential segregation, education, and training. Although more progress has been made in ‘soft’ sectors (i.e., political-cultural integration) in the Netherlands, ethnic tensions have spiked to higher levels there as well (Ireland 2004).

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


Conflict, social cohesion, and social control Such tensions have occasionally flared into turbulence and violence in many parts of Europe: intermittent rioting in downtrodden inner-city and suburban neighbourhoods in Britain, France, Brussels, and Wallonia; farright political advances in Flanders and the Netherlands; anti-foreigner street protests and mob action in German, Spanish, Swedish, and Swiss cities and rural towns; political murders in Germany and the Netherlands; terrorist threats and rising crime rates across the continent. A common trend for well over a decade has been the association of national security and sovereignty with control of borders. Migration-related security risks can be defined in terms of terrorism but likewise in terms of crime, social disorder, ethnic conflict, and the loss of social control. The latter clutch of perils has propelled the debate about immigrants in Europe as much as the terrorist menace. Whether ethnic and cultural diversity weakens solidarity and imperils the welfare state animates many discussions among migration scholars and policymakers in Europe today (see Banting 2010). The hue and cry over ethnic conflict, immigrant integration, and welfare state transformation have accordingly converged with what in Europe has become a common obsession known as ‘social cohesion’ (see Berg & Hjerm 2010; Entzinger & Biezeveld 2003). Its rise in prominence as a source of concern has been visible in both government ­reports and mainstream media coverage of migration. The immigrant incorporation ­puzzle is thereby cast more broadly than in traditional academic and pol­ icy ­studies: Is society itself integrated and ‘secure’? The implicit assumption in migration scholarship has been that equal immigrant socio-economic and political-cultural participation leads to an integrated, cohesive society. Discrepancies in labour market and other forms of incorporation between the immigrant-origin and native-stock populations are seen as almost automatically ushering in riots and other manifestations of urban violence. To date, an unambiguous correlation between participation and security has yet to be demonstrated empirically. Regardless, policymakers have reacted by engaging in various efforts to encourage incorporation and to reassert their prerogatives and to confront crime and social disorder. This turn predated the devastating terrorist attacks of the early twenty-first century, yet was strongly reinforced by them (Ireland 2010). Unwittingly, policymakers have undercut their work to maintain social order by embracing market-based solutions and reductions in the welfare state’s powerful social control function. From their beginnings in the late Middle Ages, social policy and social work were a joint attempt to keep out the ‘foreign’ poor and, when that was not possible, at least to keep them under control (Fischer 1981). The story has been about protection and order, assistance and control, as well as about aiding outsiders in taking part in

Security risks


Welfare state restructuring

Non-profit organisations

Patrick R. Ireland

a society controlled by the ‘others’ and in surrendering to its interests and norms (Müller 1993). Hence, the institutional tinkering that welfare states have undergone over the past several decades has had enormous consequences for social cohesion and social control. The decentralisation of the welfare state, which has already been described, has had an impact. Institutional arrangements at the local level long served to mute political conflict over immigration and to divert group and class antagonism into fiscal claims on local government (Freeman 1979). In altering centre-periphery relations, national governments have disturbed the local political universe and have run the risk of giving rise to unfamiliar movements and identities to which hard-pressed cities have no choice but to adapt. In addition to decentralisation, welfare state restructuring has involved the contracting out of policy formulation and implementation functions to non-state actors in the private and non-profit sectors. Existing explanations of this ‘privatisation’ of the welfare state mostly attribute it to neoconservative politics, but the non-profits’ enhanced profile debuted even before the economic recession of the mid-1970s and has often occurred under governments of the left. Privatisation has crept into policy sectors such as housing unevenly yet insistently across Europe (Dogson 2006). Ethnic small businesses, furthermore, are widely celebrated as an incorporation solution: once seen as a side-effect and indicator of labour market exclusion, self-employment now seems to be creating much-needed jobs and reviving city cores (Mushaben 2006). Markets are never neutral for immigrant-origin populations, though. Their penetration into more and more areas of life has produced greater levels of inequality and segregation, making integration as equal participation even more difficult to achieve. In light of the widespread supposition that it constitutes a precondition for social cohesion, that situation has served to fan fears. At the same time, national and sub-national governments have been delegating new tasks to non-profit organisations, including immigrant associations. So-called ‘self-help mobilisation’, abetted by the spread of the ‘empowerment’ idea in social work circles, has found champions of all political stripes since the late 1960s. Famously, the EU appropriated the concept of ‘subsidiarity’ formulated by Pope Pius XI in his 1891 encyclical Quadragesimo Anno, which stated that no function was to be performed by a higher, more complex and distant system that could be carried out by more primary groups like the family, neighbours, church, and friends. This movement has fit squarely into the vaunted return of civil society and social capital in social science. Non-profits, including immigrants’ own associations, have in many instances won newfound stature, organisational wherewithal, and an official mandate to manage ‘their’ charges. Yet in an era when ethnic, ra-

Welfare States and Immigrant Incorporation Trajectories


cial, and religious tensions have grown across the North and South, ‘the reinforcement of sub-group identities as a basis for aid should be evaluated carefully’, advises Claire Ullman (1998: 145). In addition to devolving more responsibilities to them, central and local governments have stoked ethnic and other collective identities and have encouraged competition among and within groups. Cosy local policy networks, as well as social networks among immigrant-origin residents, have been unsettled in the process. Networks can serve as capital on which to draw in immigrants’ daily struggles, but they can also trap them, circumscribing their opportunities. It has been policymakers’ express hope to replace traditional social control with ‘bridging’ social capital: relationships of trust and cooperation between network members who are dissimilar in status and power. Such capital has not always been forthcoming, and ethnic conflict and enfeebled social solidarity have not infrequently resulted. Ethnicity has been used to solve problems. Once sustained with resources and recognition, it tends to take on a life of its own and resists efforts to ‘steer’ it (Bommes 1992). ‘Policies that aim at equality and inclusion’ appear able to mitigate negative effects, all the same (Holtug 2010: 446). Sequence seems to have important implications: leading off with policies in the legal-political and cultural dimensions that highlight ethnic boundaries brings more friction along those lines. Favouring socio-economic integration first does little to bring forth incorporation in other areas, yet it might reduce the likelihood of ethnic tensions and conflict (Ireland 2004, 2010).

Conclusion Driving much of the debate on the immigrant presence in Europe, to sum up, has been not only the equality of participation in host-society economic, social, and political-cultural life that has drawn the most attention from scholars. Until recently, many of them had overlooked critical developments and relationships on the ground. Certainly, it is not enough to look at abstract rights, legal access, cold statistics, or heavily stylised national approaches. Incorporation is giving way to conceptions of integration that acknowledge process, policy internalisation/externalisation, and the ways in which policies steer the evolution of capacities and alliances. European host societies have distinctive ‘caring strategies’. But so, too, do cities and neighbourhoods. Proceeding from institutional setups, they place the emphasis either on the personal needs of an individual or on the collective needs of a particular group or groups. They tend to be either inclusive or exclusionary. They are not static. And they have varying propensities to create or defuse conflict. In order to understand immigrant incorporation and integration, it is critical not to over-



Patrick R. Ireland

look the rich interplay of local, national, and European factors and the complicated interactions between individuals and groups of native and immigrant stock.

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Crul, M. & H. Vermeulen (2003), ‘The second generation in Europe: Introduction’, International Migration Review 37 (4): 965-986. Davegos, J. M. (2001), Perspectief op Integratie. The Hague: Wetenschappelijke Raad voor Regeringsbeleid. Deeming, C. & D. Hayes (2012), ‘Worlds of welfare capitalism and wellbeing’, Journal of Social Policy 41 (4): 811-829. Dörr, S. & T. Faist (1997), ‘Institutional conditions for the integration of immigrants in welfare states’, European Journal of Political Research 31: 401-426. Dogson, J. (2006), ‘The “roll” of the state: Government, neoliberalism, and housing assistance in four advanced economies’, Housing, Theory and Society 23 (4): 224-243. Entzinger, H. (2000), ‘The dynamics of integration policies: A multidimensional model’, in R. Koopmans & P. Statham (eds), Challenging Immigration and Ethnic Relations Politics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 97-118. Entzinger, H. & R. Biezeveld (2003), Benchmarking in Immigrant Integration. Contract No. DG JAI-A-2/2002/006. Brussels: European Commission. Ersanilli, E. & R. Koopmans (2012), ‘Do immigrant integration policies matter?’, West European Politics 34 (2): 208-234. Esping-Andersen, G. (1990), The Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Faist, T. (1996), ‘Immigration, integration, and the welfare state’, in A. Heller, R. Bauböck & A. R. Zolberg (eds), The Challenge of Diversity: Integration and Pluralism in Societies of Immigration. Aldershot: Avebury, 227-250. Favell, A. (2001), ‘Integration policy and integration research in Europe’, in T. A. Aleinikoff & D. Klusmeyer (eds), Citizenship: Comparisons and Perspectives. Washington, DC: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 349-399. Favell, A. (2003), ‘Integration nations: The nation-state and research on immigrants in Western Europe’, Comparative Social Research 22: 13-42. Fischer, T. (1981), ‘Der Beginn frühmoderner Sozialpolitik in deutschen Städten des 16. Jahrhunderts’, in C. Sachsse & F. Tennstedt (eds), Jahrbuch der Sozialarbeit 4. Reinbek: Rowohlt Taschenbuchverlag, 46-68. Freeman, G. P. (1979), Immigrant Labor and Racial Conflict in Industrial Societies. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Freeman, G. P. (2004), ‘Immigrant incorporation in western democracies’, International Migration Review 38 (3): 945-969. Garson, J.-P. & C. Thoreau (1999), ‘Typologie des migrations et analyse de l’intégration’, in P. Dewitte (ed.), Immigration et Intégration: L’État des Savoirs. Paris: Éditions la Découverte, 15-31. Geddes, A. (2003), ‘Migration and the welfare state in Europe’, Political Quarterly 74 (1): 150-162. Hjerm, M. (2005), ‘Integration into the social democratic welfare state’, Social Indicators Research 70: 117-138. Holtug, N. (2010), ‘Immigration and the politics of social cohesion’, Ethnicities 10 (4): 435-451.


Patrick R. Ireland

Ireland, P. R. (2011), ‘Female migrant domestic workers in Southern Europe and the Levant’, Mediterranean Politics 16 (3): 343-363. Ireland, P. R. (2010), ‘Security and/or participation: On the need to reconcile differing conceptions of migrant integration’, in A. Chebel d’Appollonia & S. Reich (eds), Managing Ethnic Diversity after 9/11. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 20-39. Ireland, P. R. (2004), Becoming Europe: Immigration, Integration, and the Welfare State. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press. Kammer, A., J. Niehues & A. Peichl (2012), ‘Welfare regimes and welfare state outcomes in Europe’, Journal of European Social Policy 22 (5): 455-471. Köklü, P. (2011), ‘Immigration policy-making in the European Union’, Marmara Journal of European Studies 19 (1): 105-133. Koopmans, R. (2010), ‘Trade-offs between equality and difference’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36 (1): 1-26. Leibfried, S. (2000), ‘National welfare states, European integration and globalisation: A perspective for the next century’, Social Policy and Administration 34 (1): 44-63. Mau, S. & C. Burkhardt (2009), ‘Migration and welfare state solidarity in Western Europe’, Journal of European Social Policy 19 (3): 213-229. Morissens, A. & D. Sainsbury (2005), ‘Migrants’ social rights, ethnicity, and welfare regimes’, Journal of Social Policy 34 (4): 637-660. Mouritsen, P. (2012), ‘The resilience of citizenship traditions’, Ethnicities 13 (1): 86-109. Müller, B. (1993), ‘Das Soziale und die Fremden’, Neue Praxis 1-2: 1-10. Mushaben, J. M. (2006), ‘Thinking globally, integrating locally: Gender, entrepreneurship, and urban citizenship in Germany’, Citizenship Studies 10 (2): 203-227. Nannestad, P. (2007), ‘Immigration and welfare states: A survey of 15 years of research’, European Journal of Political Economy 23 (2): 512-532. Paldam, M. (2007), ‘Introduction to seminar: Immigration and the welfare state’, European Journal of Political Economy 23 (2): 448-452. Penninx, R., B. Garcés-Mascareñas & P. Scholten (2005), Policymaking related to immigration and integration. IMISCOE Reports. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Portes, A. & M. Zhou (1993), ‘The new second generation: Segmented assimilation and its variants’, The Annals 530: 74-96. Rice, D. (2013), ‘Beyond welfare regimes’, Social Policy and Administration 47 (1): 93-110. Sainsbury, D. (2006), ‘Immigrants’ social rights in comparative perspective: Welfare regimes, forms of immigration, and immigration policy regimes’, Journal of European Social Policy 16 (3): 229-244. Saxonberg, S. (2013), ‘From defamilialization to degenderization’, Social Policy and Administration 47 (1): 26-49. Schain, M. A. (2010), ‘Managing difference: Immigrant integration policy in France, Britain, and the United States’, Social Research 77 (1): 205-236. Schmitter Heisler, B. (1998), ‘Immigration and German cities: Exploring national policies and local outcomes’, German Politics and Society 49 (4): 18-41.

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Schmitter Heisler, B. (2000), ‘The sociology of immigration’, in C. B. Brettell & J. F. Hollifield (eds), Migration Theory: Talking across Disciplines. New York: Routledge, 77-96. Scholten, P. W. A. (2011), Framing Immigrant Integration. IMISCOE Research. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Sciortino, G. (2004), ‘Immigration in a Mediterranean welfare state: The Italian experience in comparative perspective’, Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis 6 (2): 111-129. Simon, P. (2003), ‘France and the unknown second generation’, International Migration Review 37 (4): 1091-1119. Soysal, Y. N. (1994), Limits of Citizenship: Migrants and Postnational Membership in Europe. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Strom, E. & M. Mayer (1998), ‘The new Berlin’, German Politics and Society 49 (4): 122-139. De Swaan, A. (1994), ‘Perspectives for transnational social policy in Europe’, in A. de Swaan (ed.), Social Policy beyond Borders: The Social Question in Transnational Perspective. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 101-115. Tsourdi, L. (2011), Towards a Right of Permanent Residence for Long-Term Migrants. Brussels: Churches’ Commission for Migrants in Europe. Ullman, C. F. (1998), The Welfare State’s Other Crisis. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Wallace Goodman, S. (2010), ‘Integration requirements for integration’s sake?’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36 (5): 753-772. Winter, E. (2010), ‘Trajectories of multiculturalism in Germany, the Netherlands, and Canada’, Government and Opposition 45 (2): 166-186. Xu, Q. (2007), ‘Globalization, immigration, and the welfare state: A cross-national comparison’, Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare 34 (2): 87-106.

Key reading Favell, A. (2003), ‘Integration nations: The nation-state and research on immigrants in Western Europe’, Comparative Social Research 22: 13-42. Freeman, G. P. (2004), ‘Immigrant incorporation in Western democracies’, International Migration Review 38 (3): 945-969. Hjerm, M. (2005), ‘Integration into the social democratic welfare state’, Social Indicators Research 70: 117-138. Ireland, P. R. (2010), ‘Security and/or participation: On the need to reconcile differing conceptions of migrant integration’, in A. Chebel d’Appollonia & S. Reich (eds), Managing Ethnic Diversity after 9/11. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 20-39. Koopmans, R. (2010), ‘Trade-offs between equality and difference’, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36 (1): 1-26.


Patrick R. Ireland

About the author Patrick R. Ireland is a professor of political science at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. His education at Harvard University, the University of Notre Dame, and the University of Texas was in comparative politics, migration policy, and public health. He has published extensively on migration-related issues, including several books and a large number of articles and book chapters. His work has focused on migrant integration, especially at the local and neighbourhood levels, and has been based on extensive fieldwork conducted in Europe, Australia, Canada, the Middle East, and North and sub-Saharan Africa.

16  Between National and Local Integration Policies Han Entzinger and Peter Scholten

Summary This chapter focuses on the relationship between national and local immigrant integration policies. These policies are often understood in terms of national models of integration. However, much of the actual policymaking on integration takes place at the local level, especially in large cities. Major discrepancies exist not only between the ways cities approach these issues, but also between migrant integration policies as formulated at the local and the national level. This complicates a coherent and consistent multilevel governance of migrant integration. The recent assimilationist turn in the policies of many European countries is not clearly reflected locally, where approaches tend to be more pragmatic when it comes to cultural diversity. This casts doubt on the impact of national integration policies and on their effectiveness. Their symbolic value may be high, but they do not always provide answers to the concrete challenges felt at the local level. Keywords: Integration policy, national policies, local policies, policy models.

Introduction Almost an entire generation of students of migration and integration from all over the world have been initiated into this area through The Age of Migration, authored by Stephen Castles and Mark Miller. This is an excellent textbook, and there can be no better proof of this than that it has already seen its fifth revised edition. In their book Castles and Miller develop three models that reflect the differences in approach between the three major immigration countries in Europe: the exclusionary model of Germany, the republican or assimilation model of France and the multiculturalist model of Britain (Castles & Miller 1993: 223). Most other countries in Europe, they claim, either follow the example of one of these three or represent some in-between form. This typology looks quite convincing, certainly to

Age of migration



Han Entzinger and Peter Scholten

students as newcomers to the field, and it is easy to remember. It was first presented in the book’s first edition, published in 1993, and it is still there in the fourth edition of 2009, even though the authors have slightly modified the names and now start their section on the models by remarking that ‘the reality in each country is much more complex and contradictory than our brief accounts can show’ (Castles & Miller 2009: 274). How right they are! Thinking in terms of models of immigrant integration as such may not be out of date. However, sticking one of these models as a label to one or more countries, and expecting this to explain why that country’s government acts as it does, is far too simple for a good understanding of today’s complex realities of immigration and integration. Twenty years ago it might still have worked. Compared to what we see today, immigration in Europe was still relatively easy to map: the former colonial powers had received post-colonial immigrants and most countries in North-Western Europe had their ‘guest workers’ from the Mediterranean area with growing numbers of family migrants. Southern Europe was on the brink of becoming an immigration area, and the East had only just begun its huge transformation process. Since then, immigration to virtually all European countries has not only increased in size, but it has also proliferated to such an extent that Europe’s immigrant populations are now characterised by what Vertovec (2007) calls ‘superdiversity’. The three relatively straightforward models offer insufficient hold for grasping such developments. Moreover, as time has past, huge differences have become manifest between, but also within various immigrant communities in each country. A model that may capture some will no longer catch all. It is not just the proliferation of migration that has reduced the models’ practicability. There have also been fundamental changes at the ‘receiving end’ that must be accounted for. First, the models suggest that a state has a decisive influence on the course of immigrant integration. This is only true to some extent. States have a major say in migrants’ legal status and, for that matter, in their security of residence. States may provide certain facilities for immigrants in crucial areas such as housing, education and employment. On the whole, however, integration is very much an autonomous process, hard to cast into one specific model. Besides, the past two decades have seen a withdrawal of the state from many areas in which it used to intervene more actively. We have also witnessed a politicisation of the immigration debate almost everywhere in Europe. It is becoming increasingly clear that the choice for one specific model in fact is a political choice, and that a one-to-one relationship between certain models and certain countries is not as obvious as it may at first seem. In reality different models of integration compete with one another in the political debate in every single country. Depending on the outcomes of such debates, countries may switch from one model to another, or, as is the case much more

Between National and Local Integration Policies


often, they may show a mix of models, depending on the policy area or the migrant community under concern. This relative volatility of models has yet another reason. Much of the actual policymaking intended to promote immigrant integration takes place at the local and regional levels, rather than nationally. The countries’ capital cities may define the broader contours of integration policies, but their actual implementation, and increasingly also their formulation occur at the local level. It is there that concrete decisions on themes as varied as housing, segregation, schooling, social policy, interethnic relations and the maintaining of public order have to be taken. Local politicians and policymakers often perceive quite a distance between the rather abstract frame of reference that a ‘national model of integration’ provides and the concrete day-to-day issues they have to deal with. Moreover, with growing decentralisation in most countries the role of national models in public and political discourse tends to become more and more symbolic. This chapter further analyses the nature of this process. We ask ourselves what impact this may have on the use of models of integration in the future. The focus of this chapter is on the links between the national and the local level. Usually these are the two most important government levels when it comes to migrant integration. However, besides the growing influence of the European level and other forms of intergovernmental cooperation, the multi-level governance of migrant integration has also evolved around the regional level in certain countries. This applies in particular to states such as Belgium, Canada and Spain, where regional identities and linguistic differences are significant, but also to countries like the UK and Germany, where certain policy areas,