The Crises of Multiculturalism

The Crises of Multiculturalism : Racism in a Neoliberal Age

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Across the West, something called multiculturalism is in crisis. Regarded as the failed experiment of liberal elites, commentators and politicians compete to denounce its corrosive legacies; parallel communities threatening social cohesion, enemies within cultivated by irresponsible cultural relativism, mediaeval practices subverting national 'ways of life' and universal values. This important new book challenges this familiar narrative of the rise and fall of multiculturalism by challenging the existence of a coherent era of 'multiculturalism' in the first place. The authors argue that what we are witnessing is not so much a rejection of multiculturalism as a rejection of lived multiculture. In documenting mainstream racism and the anxieties that inform it, Lentin and Titley argue that the crisis is a projection of neoliberal societies' disjunctures. Combining theory with a reading of contemporary events, it examines the transnational, mediated nature of crisis itself, and argues challenging this notion provides activists with a chance to transcend resurgent racism.

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  • Paperback | 296 pages
  • 138 x 212 x 22mm | 381.02g
  • LondonUnited Kingdom
  • English
  • 1848135815
  • 9781848135819
  • 175,086

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'Alana Lentin and Gavan Titley offer a powerful and persuasive account of how multiculturalism has been sentenced to death. Drawing on a vast array of sources, voices and examples, they show how laments on the failure of multiculturalism create a political and affective landscape in which racism is simultaneously repudiated and reproduced. A necessary and important book.' - Sara Ahmed, Professor of Race and Cultural Studies, Goldsmiths College 'This book provides a rich and scholarly analysis of the multiple forces at play in the construction of the 'death of multiculturalism' as a flexible and potent political discourse. Incisive and provocative in it's analysis; it is uncomfortable reading for those on both the left and right in politics. This is necessary reading for anyone concerned with the complex masking of racism within the rhetorical dance of national identities and globalized neo-liberal ideologies. - Professor Charles Husband, Centre for Applied Social Research, University of Bradford. 'The Crises of Multiculturalism critically examines the entanglements inherent in the broad range of European multiculturalisms today, their "loud" rejection and yet a melancholic neediness expressed in their bemoaning. The analysis is especially incisive about the ways in which an "era of integration," as multiculturalism's contemporary expression, seeks insecurely to assert authoritative control and security in the face of threatening and fearful expressions of a burgeoning multiculture supposedly marking European nations. The authors reveal how the politics of multiculturalism continue to structure, reproduce, and render less visible contemporary racisms.Those concerned to understand the synchrony of multiculturalism, integration, and revitalized racisms across the European landscape would do well to consult this book.' - Professor David Theo Goldberg, University of California

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About Alana Lentin

Alana Lentin is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology, University of Sussex, UK. Gavan Titley is Lecturer in the School of English, Media and Theatre Studies, National University of Ireland Maynooth, Ireland.

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