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Europe and the silence about race
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-07, 22:24 authored by Alana Lentin
This article argues that, despite the efforts to expunge race from the European political sphere, racism continues to define the sociality of Europe. The post-war drive to replace race with other signifiers, such as culture or ethnicity, has done little to overcome the effects of the race idea, one less based on naturalist conceptions of hierarchical humanity, and more on fundamental conceptions of Europeanness and non-Europeanness. The silence about race in Europe allows European states to declare themselves non-racist, or even anti-racist, while at the same time continuing to imply an inherent European superiority, which determines both international relationships and relationships with those seen as `in but not of Europe' within its domestic spheres. The article concludes by asking what the repercussions of this are in the context of the contemporary discourse on cohesion and integration that replaces multiculturalism as a possible way of living together in a Europe always less homogeneous in reality than it is commonly imagined to be.
JournalEuropean Journal of Social Theory
Department affiliated with
- Sociology and Criminology Publications
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