Weak Multiculturalism and Fears of Cultural Encroachment: Meanings of Multiculturalism Among Young Elites in Britain
MetadataShow full item record
CitationWarikoo, Natasha. "Weak Multiculturalism and Fears of Cultural Encroachment: Meanings of Multiculturalism among Young Elites in Britain." Ethnicities, 2019.
AbstractWhile politicians and scholars have debated the meaning, value, and purposes of multiculturalism for decades, less attention has been paid to the views of a broader group of Britons, despite views on multiculturalism being powerful predictors of, for example, support for Brexit in Britain (Ashcroft, 2016). In this paper I analyze the meaning of multiculturalism for elite university students in Britain. Many British leaders spend their early adulthood in elite universities. Do they hold the same conceptions of multiculturalism that scholars, the media, and politicians espouse? And, do they express strong support for multiculturalism (as they understand it) as discussions about political division in Britain assume? This paper answers these important questions by analyzing 67 in-depth interviews with undergraduates at Oxford University. I find that students define multiculturalism as a diverse array of ethnic groups living in the same society. Most simultaneously report little impact on their lives. Still, a significant minority express concerns about a perceived lack of integration and impingement on traditional British culture. These findings demonstrate precarious support for multiculturalism even among those who express more tolerant, inclusive understandings of British society related to immigration and Brexit in opinion polls.
Citable link to this pagehttps://nrs.harvard.edu/URN-3:HUL.INSTREPOS:37364488
- GSE Scholarly Articles