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Suspect community or suspect category? The impact of counter-terrorism as ‘policed multiculturalism’

How to think about the impact of counter-terrorism and counter-radicalisation on ethnic and religious accommodation?

Francesco Ragazzi
25 January 2016
Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies

The main hypothesis is that rather than promoting ‘assimilation’, as the government would expect, or alienation, as the advocates of the ‘suspect community’ hypothesis would contend, counter-terrorist policies produce and reinforce a government of society in discrete and divided ethno-religious groups. Such ‘policed multiculturalism’—understood as the recognition and the management of diversity through a security perspective—has an important consequence in that it removes fundamental questions about pluralism from political debate, casting them instead in a depoliticised language of security.

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