Encyclopedia of Race and Ethnic Studies

Encyclopedia of Race and Ethnic Studies

Encyclopedia of Race and Ethnic Studies

Encyclopedia of Race and Ethnic Studies

Synopsis

Developed from the critically acclaimed and commercially successful Dictionary of Race and Ethnic Relations , now in its fourth edition, Encyclopedia of Race and Ethnic Studies has been assembled by a world-class team of international scholars led by Ellis Cashmore to provide an authoritative, single-volume reference work on all aspects of race and ethnic studies. From Aboriginal Australians to xenophobia, Nelson Mandela to Richard Wagner, sexuality to racial profiling, the Encyclopedia is organized alphabetically and reflects cultural diversity in a global context. The entries range from succinct 400 word definitions to in-depth 2000 word essays to provide comprehensive coverage of: * all the key terms, concepts and debates * important figures, both historical and contemporary * landmark cases * historical events Although unafraid to engage with cutting-edge theory, the Encyclopedia is uncluttered by jargon and has been written in a lucid, 'facts-fronted' style to offer an accessible introduction to race and ethnic studies. The Encyclopedia is also fully cross-referenced and thoroughly indexed with most entries followed by annotated up-to-date suggestions for further reading to guide the user to the key sources. It is destined to become an essential resource for scholars and students of race and ethnic studies, as well as a handy reference for journalists and others working in the field.

Excerpt

Things change. In the early twenty-first century, Scotland was a destination for asylum seekers fleeing persecution from other parts of Europe and Asia. The Sighthill area of Glasgow, in particular, housed 1,500 of the city's 6,000 asylum seekers. It was here in August 2001 that Firsat Dag, a Turkish ASYLUM SEEKER was murdered as he made his way from the downtown area to his flat in a bleak tower block. (Terms appearing in SMALL CAPITALS have an entry of their own in the text.)

Sighthill is a joyless landscape of tenements, hardship and unemployment where almost half the population lives in poverty. Forty-three languages were spoken in the area. Sighthill was alive with racist violence and resentment. It was portrayed by the media as a wasteland, with neo-Nazis combing over the remains.

Dag's murder made headlines but did not provoke a cause célèbre in the same way as the STEPHEN LAWRENCE CASE had two years earlier. It did, however, augur badly: Sighthill looked doomed to racial rancor and VIOLENCE; there was little in its social or psychological make-up that gave cause for expecting any different. And, yet, something quite different happened: a year on, reported racist incidents fell by 56 percent and residents were claiming a “transformation.” Billy Singh, a community activist with the Sighthill Community Stop Shop, reflected: “His [Dag's] murder galvanized the community, both local people and refugees, into one voice fighting for the same social improvements.”

Instead of using Dag's death as an occasion for closing ranks, sharpening enmities and mobilizing the forces of exclusion, the 7,500 residents considered the common conditions shared by everyone who lived on the grim estate where neighborliness was one of the few resources available. As one resident put it: “The trouble was local people didn't know anything about the incomers and now we do. We have taken the trouble to speak to them, learn of their experiences and now most people realize that we are all in the same boat.” It sounded exemplary. “There are no longer local people and asylum seekers, just residents of Sighthill and we look after our own – color or ethnic origin doesn't matter.”

Too good to be true? Not quite. For years, local residents had campaigned vainly to have their properties renovated and repaired. When they noticed that many flats were being improved and made habitable for groups they regarded as outsiders, they reacted, initially, with anger and occasionally violence. The murder was a turning point: it forced them to compare their own experiences with those they considered OTHER. They discovered, first, that the recent history of the asylum seekers made their own travails seem moderate, and, second, that, in their present circumstances, they shared in more respects than they differed. Certain facts remained: they were still poor, they still had decrepit homes and the unemployment that had been a virtually permanent feature of the area stayed around the same level. The RACISM diminished amid the common deprivation.

Around the same time, France outlawed Unité Radicale, a white supremacist organization whose membership included a man accused of trying to assassinate President Jacques Chirac, in July 2002. The . . .

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