Writing against integration: Danish imaginaries of culture, race and belonging

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This paper address some of the problems related to the concept of ‘integration’, that since the 1990s, have been used (and abused) in Denmark to discuss socio-economic, cultural and religious challenges related to everyday life of ethnic minorities. The concept of ‘integration’ is not (and never was) innocent but simultaneously promotes a specific conceptualization of Danish society and a problematization of immigrant minorities and their relationship to the indigenous majority. Based on anthropological studies conducted in Denmark in recent decades, the paper attempts to entangle the dominant social imaginary by outlining three scenarios of ‘Welfare reciprocity’, ‘Hosts and Guests’ and ‘The Danes as an indigenous people’. The social imaginary reproduces an asymmetrical relationship between majorities and minorities as it cast ‘integration’ as desirable, yet impossible. Finally, inspired by Lila Abu-Lughod’s seminal article ‘writing against culture’ (1991), the paper outline some strategies of ‘writing against integration’ in a humble first attempt to reinstall a difference between emic and etic discourses, so that academic analysis can regain a critical potential.
StatusE-pub ahead of print - apr. 2018
BegivenhedEASA 2016 - Milano, Italien
Varighed: 20 jul. 201623 jul. 2016


KonferenceEASA 2016

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