An article I wrote for the Guardian UK on the report of the Commission on Ethnic and Racial Disparities has been published. It it I build on my theorisation of ‘not racism’ as a form of discursive racial violence, developed in Why Race Still Matters. I focus especially on the…
Tag: Munira Mirza
This piece, co-written with Gavan Titley, was published on the Muslim Council of Britain’s website in response to Prospect Magazine’s ‘Rethinking Race’ feature, edited by Munira Mirza.
As reluctant connoisseurs of multicultural clichés, we were somewhat disappointed that Munira Mirza’s essay forgot to report how Birmingham City Council killed Christmas and replaced it with Winterval. As several contributors have noted, her largely anecdotal essay presents a set of arguments that could have been assembled anytime over the last twenty years. Furthermore, it remains mired in the either/or logics it sets out to critique; displays no sense of the motility and changing nature of racisms; depends on the active forgetting of how ‘cultural racism’ has shifted in the ‘war on terror’ era to coded discourses of values, compatibility and loyalty; and refuses to engage with how, as Soumaya Ghannoushi (2006) argued, the perennial trope of the ‘multiculturalism problem’ has become a euphemism for ‘the Muslim problem’. As Gargi Bhattacharyya noted, the article is not really about multiculturalism, but proposes a familiar attack ‘on the claim that racism exists and shapes social outcomes’.