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MigrationEconomic Change, Social Challenge$
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Christian Dustmann

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198729624

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198729624.001.0001

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Are We All Now Multiculturalists, Assimilationists, Both, or Neither?

Are We All Now Multiculturalists, Assimilationists, Both, or Neither?

(p.138) 7 Are We All Now Multiculturalists, Assimilationists, Both, or Neither?

Jack Citrin

Oxford University Press

Confronting ethnic change due to immigration, European and North American countries have adopted policies from a continuum ranging from multiculturalism to assimilation. This chapter reviews the swing away from multiculturalism and also public opinion regarding the integration of immigrants and support for cultural diversity. The strength of national identities and how they are conceived shapes public preferences with ethnic definitions of nationhood linked to opposition to multiculturalism. Nevertheless, there seems to be a consensus on non-coercive assimilation or a ‘soft version’ of multiculturalism as desirable. In Europe, opposition to increased immigration is widespread, but this outlook is unrelated to the strength of multicultural policies in a country, so there is some gap between policy and opinion.

Keywords:   multiculturalism, assimilation, immigration flow, national identity, policy pendulum, integrative consensus

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