Immigrants, Literature and National Integration (New by Chantal Lacroix

By Chantal Lacroix

Immigrants, Literature and nationwide Integration explores new technique of facilitating integration. utilizing the uk and Germany as case reports, and studying the relation among immigrant literature and integration, this ebook explores integration in an interdisciplinary style throughout either the arts and social sciences.

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Extra info for Immigrants, Literature and National Integration (New Perspectives in German Political Studies)

Sample text

Hence, as a result, it can be said that both sides of the political spectrum made use—and still make use—of the culturalisation of politics and use culture as a means of differentiation, which socially excludes a large number of people in Germany. The Leitkultur debate legitimates the exclusion of foreigners (Klusmeyer, 2001). People from different cultural backgrounds (in the present case, German Turks) cannot expect to be treated as Germans because they have yet to become Germans. Hence, it is clear that Germany still very much sees itself as a Kulturnation and that the definition of German Cultural Integration 43 Leitkultur is not flexible enough to accommodate the different cultural traits of cultural minorities.

It logically follows that the idea of the nation, and of a nationally integrated Britain or Germany, is an individual and collective construction. At its core, constructivism posits that the environment in which actors operate is given meaning through ongoing processes of construction (Checkel, 1998). These construction processes occur in all aspects of society: socially, culturally and economically. The idea of a socially constructed reality stresses the ongoing building of world views, identities, habits, institutions and so on by individuals through a dialectical interaction with society and where the various realities formed comprise ‘imagined worlds’ of human existence and activity (Anderson, 1991).

However, I will take a closer look at the German and British self-understandings of national culture. In particular, the debate surrounding German Leitkultur will provide a robust analysis of the German cultural context at play in the present work. The same applies to the British understanding of Britishness and its implications with respect to identity and culture. These two cases, when compared and juxtaposed with one another and further complemented by a focus on minority culture and stereotypes, provide solid bases upon which to outline the links between immigrant literature and cultural integration.

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