European societies have exhibited high levels of xenophobia and racism in attitude surveys, a desire to limit immigration and acceptance of refugees, and a readiness to exclude foreigners from certain social areas and arenas (Hargreaves & Leaman 1995; Solomos & Wrench 1993; Eurobarometer surveys for EUMC). Furthermore, there is a persistent threat that racist socio-political movements will arise and establish themselves, introducing a “racist agenda,” pressuring established parties to shift their position, and blocking or reversing institutional re-alignment in favor of pluralism, equality, and justice. It is paradoxical that established elites within Europe stand for increased pluralism and opposition to xenophobia and racism, but that they have been largely unable to prevent or limit socio- political movements articulating ethno-nationalism (implying an ardent xenophobia), and authoritarian views on socio-cultural matters (e.g. law-and-order). Nor have they been able to overcome much of the institutional inertia and resistance in order to effectively address the problems of widespread institutionalized discrimination. These notes identify in Section I normal group and community processes that lie at the root of xenophobia and racism, and related forms of negative response to diverse “others” – “otherisms” is the term we have coined. Our main point is that problems of xenophobia and otherism, including racism, are particular radical expressions or forms processes taking place in all social groups and communities, but, of course, taking different forms and having different consequences.4 By undesrstanding these basic processes, we can better analyze and most effectively address problems of racism and xenophobia.This view differs, of course, from those that see xenophobia as largely pathological, as something purely irrational and exceptional The notes go on to examine two major forms of xenophobia and otherism in contemporary societies: on the one hand, taken-for-granted and institutionalized forms (section II) and open, political expressions, on the other (section III)

THE SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF XENOPHOBIA AND OTHER-ISMS

BELLEI, CRISTIANO MARIA
2002-01-01

Abstract

European societies have exhibited high levels of xenophobia and racism in attitude surveys, a desire to limit immigration and acceptance of refugees, and a readiness to exclude foreigners from certain social areas and arenas (Hargreaves & Leaman 1995; Solomos & Wrench 1993; Eurobarometer surveys for EUMC). Furthermore, there is a persistent threat that racist socio-political movements will arise and establish themselves, introducing a “racist agenda,” pressuring established parties to shift their position, and blocking or reversing institutional re-alignment in favor of pluralism, equality, and justice. It is paradoxical that established elites within Europe stand for increased pluralism and opposition to xenophobia and racism, but that they have been largely unable to prevent or limit socio- political movements articulating ethno-nationalism (implying an ardent xenophobia), and authoritarian views on socio-cultural matters (e.g. law-and-order). Nor have they been able to overcome much of the institutional inertia and resistance in order to effectively address the problems of widespread institutionalized discrimination. These notes identify in Section I normal group and community processes that lie at the root of xenophobia and racism, and related forms of negative response to diverse “others” – “otherisms” is the term we have coined. Our main point is that problems of xenophobia and otherism, including racism, are particular radical expressions or forms processes taking place in all social groups and communities, but, of course, taking different forms and having different consequences.4 By undesrstanding these basic processes, we can better analyze and most effectively address problems of racism and xenophobia.This view differs, of course, from those that see xenophobia as largely pathological, as something purely irrational and exceptional The notes go on to examine two major forms of xenophobia and otherism in contemporary societies: on the one hand, taken-for-granted and institutionalized forms (section II) and open, political expressions, on the other (section III)
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11576/2535409
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