A Clash of Civilizations? Political Sociology Week 6

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  • Origins\nCoined by Antoine de Stutt Tracy (1796)\nEnlightenment rationality against metaphysics/theology\nScience of Ideas\n‘Queen of theories’ - necessary for the development of all other ideas.\n\nChanges in meaning\n\nAdvocated by secular, republican, liberal thinkers\nSo becomes associated with political doctrine\nUsed pejoratively against the radical ideologues\nBirth of the notion of competing political stances as ideologies\n\nIn Marx (The German ideology)\n\nPejorative against Hegelians\nIdealist philosophy unable to bring change\nIdeologues = bourgeois liberals\nAgainst intellectuals who use ideas to sustain dominant political and economic order (against working class)\nEngels: ‘False consciousness’ - crude distinction between ‘Marxist science’ and ‘bourgeois ideology’\nLenin: Socialism becomes an ideology battling others\n\nContemporary use\n\nThe Marxist critique of ideology remains dominant in western thinking.\nIdeologues are seen as dogmatic individuals, unwilling to take part in rational debate. \nThings that are taken to be western ‘principles’ such as liberal values, democracy, tolerance, respect for the rule of law etc. are rarely seen as ideological in nature. They are portrayed as neutral and universal and thus opposed to ideologies - dogmas - which are said to be the preserve of dictators and religious fundamentalists.\n\nThis one-sided view of ideology creates a divide between western and non-western ways of thinking which underpin very different ways of life. The western way of life - seen as free from ideology - is deemed to be more positive because it is seen as free from ideological dogmatism, while non-western ways of life (in particular the Muslim world) is seen as unfree because wedded to strict and unyielding ideological structures dictated by anti-modern religious precepts.\n
  • Origins\nCoined by Antoine de Stutt Tracy (1796)\nEnlightenment rationality against metaphysics/theology\nScience of Ideas\n‘Queen of theories’ - necessary for the development of all other ideas.\n\nChanges in meaning\n\nAdvocated by secular, republican, liberal thinkers\nSo becomes associated with political doctrine\nUsed pejoratively against the radical ideologues\nBirth of the notion of competing political stances as ideologies\n\nIn Marx (The German ideology)\n\nPejorative against Hegelians\nIdealist philosophy unable to bring change\nIdeologues = bourgeois liberals\nAgainst intellectuals who use ideas to sustain dominant political and economic order (against working class)\nEngels: ‘False consciousness’ - crude distinction between ‘Marxist science’ and ‘bourgeois ideology’\nLenin: Socialism becomes an ideology battling others\n\nContemporary use\n\nThe Marxist critique of ideology remains dominant in western thinking.\nIdeologues are seen as dogmatic individuals, unwilling to take part in rational debate. \nThings that are taken to be western ‘principles’ such as liberal values, democracy, tolerance, respect for the rule of law etc. are rarely seen as ideological in nature. They are portrayed as neutral and universal and thus opposed to ideologies - dogmas - which are said to be the preserve of dictators and religious fundamentalists.\n\nThis one-sided view of ideology creates a divide between western and non-western ways of thinking which underpin very different ways of life. The western way of life - seen as free from ideology - is deemed to be more positive because it is seen as free from ideological dogmatism, while non-western ways of life (in particular the Muslim world) is seen as unfree because wedded to strict and unyielding ideological structures dictated by anti-modern religious precepts.\n
  • Origins\nCoined by Antoine de Stutt Tracy (1796)\nEnlightenment rationality against metaphysics/theology\nScience of Ideas\n‘Queen of theories’ - necessary for the development of all other ideas.\n\nChanges in meaning\n\nAdvocated by secular, republican, liberal thinkers\nSo becomes associated with political doctrine\nUsed pejoratively against the radical ideologues\nBirth of the notion of competing political stances as ideologies\n\nIn Marx (The German ideology)\n\nPejorative against Hegelians\nIdealist philosophy unable to bring change\nIdeologues = bourgeois liberals\nAgainst intellectuals who use ideas to sustain dominant political and economic order (against working class)\nEngels: ‘False consciousness’ - crude distinction between ‘Marxist science’ and ‘bourgeois ideology’\nLenin: Socialism becomes an ideology battling others\n\nContemporary use\n\nThe Marxist critique of ideology remains dominant in western thinking.\nIdeologues are seen as dogmatic individuals, unwilling to take part in rational debate. \nThings that are taken to be western ‘principles’ such as liberal values, democracy, tolerance, respect for the rule of law etc. are rarely seen as ideological in nature. They are portrayed as neutral and universal and thus opposed to ideologies - dogmas - which are said to be the preserve of dictators and religious fundamentalists.\n\nThis one-sided view of ideology creates a divide between western and non-western ways of thinking which underpin very different ways of life. The western way of life - seen as free from ideology - is deemed to be more positive because it is seen as free from ideological dogmatism, while non-western ways of life (in particular the Muslim world) is seen as unfree because wedded to strict and unyielding ideological structures dictated by anti-modern religious precepts.\n
  • Origins\nCoined by Antoine de Stutt Tracy (1796)\nEnlightenment rationality against metaphysics/theology\nScience of Ideas\n‘Queen of theories’ - necessary for the development of all other ideas.\n\nChanges in meaning\n\nAdvocated by secular, republican, liberal thinkers\nSo becomes associated with political doctrine\nUsed pejoratively against the radical ideologues\nBirth of the notion of competing political stances as ideologies\n\nIn Marx (The German ideology)\n\nPejorative against Hegelians\nIdealist philosophy unable to bring change\nIdeologues = bourgeois liberals\nAgainst intellectuals who use ideas to sustain dominant political and economic order (against working class)\nEngels: ‘False consciousness’ - crude distinction between ‘Marxist science’ and ‘bourgeois ideology’\nLenin: Socialism becomes an ideology battling others\n\nContemporary use\n\nThe Marxist critique of ideology remains dominant in western thinking.\nIdeologues are seen as dogmatic individuals, unwilling to take part in rational debate. \nThings that are taken to be western ‘principles’ such as liberal values, democracy, tolerance, respect for the rule of law etc. are rarely seen as ideological in nature. They are portrayed as neutral and universal and thus opposed to ideologies - dogmas - which are said to be the preserve of dictators and religious fundamentalists.\n\nThis one-sided view of ideology creates a divide between western and non-western ways of thinking which underpin very different ways of life. The western way of life - seen as free from ideology - is deemed to be more positive because it is seen as free from ideological dogmatism, while non-western ways of life (in particular the Muslim world) is seen as unfree because wedded to strict and unyielding ideological structures dictated by anti-modern religious precepts.\n
  • Said critique\n
  • 1. The post-9/11 world\n\nFor many political analysts, and certainly for the dominant political class in the US, the UK and their allies, the world changed forever on the 11th of September 2001. \n\nFor Samuel Huntington and his followers, the attacks on New York and Washington were proof of the clash of civilizations he had posited in the early 1990s. \n\nAs Steven Howe points out, the world is actually a less - not more - violent place since 2001. There are less conflicts around the globe and citizens of the UK are in fact less at risk from terrorist attacks than they were in the 1980s and 90s. \n\nHowever, there is a perception that global conflict and insecurity are on the rise. The cataclysmic events of 9/11 have enabled an ideological shift to occur. Due to the nature of the events themselves, but also to the decision to go to war in Afghanistan and Iraq, there is a global perception that the west is at war with the Muslim world in a clash of civilizations the outcome of which will determine how we all live our lives in the future. \n\nAs many commentators have observed, the world is not as different post-9/11 as this view would have us think. Many of the policies put in place after 9/11 were in fact continuing a political drive that had already begun in the 1980s and 1990s. The war in Afghanistan, for example, can be seen as a continuation of the war already fought against the Soviets there in the 1980s, with different enemies. The ongoing conflict in the Middle East predates 9/11.\n\nWhat has changed is the reframing of these type of conflicts as a global war (rather than one waged by a few nations) against something called Islam. This view paradoxically accepts the conservative Muslim belief in the ‘umma’ - the single Muslim nation. \n\nAs Steven Howe puts it, ‘Once upon a time, Britain’s inhabitants included several hundred thousand Pakistanis and Bangladeshis - or people with family origins in these countries - plus smaller but significant communities of Egyptians, Turks, Somalis and many more. Remarkably, they have all vanished in the past decade or so. In the places where they used to live, a completely new set of people has replaced them: people called Muslims. This vast act of ethnic cleansing has happened silently, almost without remark.’\n\n2. The politics of fear\n\nWhatever perspective one holds on the reasons for the invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as the plans mooted to invade Iran today, they have been enabled by placing an emphasis on human security.\n\nBecause 9/11 involved ordinary people on commuter planes, the idea that terrorists can attack anywhere at any time has been a strong motivation in support for extraordinary measures under the ‘war on terror’. A direct correlation is made between the security of populations in the West and the military interventions into Iraq and Afghanistan. \n\nHowever, it can be argued that the terrorist threat has in fact increased since the US-led invasion of Afghanistan and that the fact that ‘home-grown’ terrorists carried out attacks such as the 7/7 bombings means that the war on terror has failed to make us safer. \n\nNevertheless, the politics of fear are a strong motivator in lending legitimacy to the ‘war on terror’. It has also impacted upon the way in which people living in multicultural societies view people perceived as Muslims. As David Cole, among others, has pointed out many people perceived to be Muslim, due to an association with having brown skin for example, become the targets of heightened security measures or suspicion from their fellow citizens. \n\nFor example, Balbir Singh Sodhi was gunned down on September 15, 2001 in Mesa, Arizona. The turban-wearing Sikh was killed outside his gas station. Sodhi’s killer spent the hours before the murder in a bar, bragging of his intention to “kill the ragheads responsible for September 11.” \n\nSimilarly, the shooting of Jean-Charles de Menezes by the Metropolitan Police in Stockwell in July 2005, a Brazilian thought to resemble one of the people behind the failed terrorist attacks of July 21 2005, is evidence of how fear provokes knee jerk reactions. The failure of the inquiry held into the de Menezes shooting to indict the police officers responsible could be taken as further evidence of how the politics of fear and the desire for security may legitimate miscarriages of justice in the name of the struggle against terrorism. \n\n3. Hearts and minds\n\nThe war on terror, at home and abroad, has a strong ideological component that sets out not only to combat terrorism militarily but to change beliefs and behaviours. The so-called ‘battle for hearts and minds’ became more important once it was found that Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction. The aim in Iraq became to bring democracy and freedom to a people suffering under a cruel dictatorship; a similar motivation underpinned NATO’s recent involvement in Libya. \n\nThe battle for hearts and minds is predicated on the idea that the West is intrinsically free and democratic with societies organised along principles of tolerance where respect for the rule of law is paramount. Non-western societies, such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, or Iran have not benefited from such freedoms yet their people crave them. It is for this reason that pro-imperialist thinkers, such as the historian Niall Ferguson, talk about ‘humanitarian imperialism’ or ‘empire by invitation’ to describe the invasions and occupations of the 2000s. \n\nThe idea is that taking over a country and deposing its despotic ruler, even if lives are lost in what the Bush administration called ‘collateral damage’, is better than doing nothing because of the ultimate prize: democracy. \n\nIn tandem, a parallel process is taking place within western countries with Muslim populations based on the fear that radicalised Islam is taking hold within the West itself. The younger generation of Muslims in Britain, France, the Netherlands, and so on is seen as being more conservatively religious than its parents’ one. \n\nFor example, Channel is part of the Prevent programme focused on halting radicalisation among Muslim youth. According to a report by Arun Kundnani, over 200 people have been identified through the Channel programme as would-be violent extremists - the overwhelming majority young Muslims. \n\nIn a number of areas, teachers, youth workers and other professionals working with young Muslims have been briefed by officers of the local police counter-terrorism unit on the indicators of extremism to look out for. One such officer, interviewed by Arun Kundnani, told him that he was visiting nursery schools in Birmingham to advise teachers that children as young as four could be at risk of radicalisation. He said that signs of radicalisation among toddlers include saying that Christians are bad or drawing pictures of bombs.\n\n4. State of exception \n\nWe came across the concept of Agamben’s ‘State of exception’ in week 5 in relation to the neoliberal state. The belief that 9/11 signalled a new political era has legitimated what some have described as a permanent state of exception where the normal rule of law has been suspended in favour of a permanent acceptance of extraordinary, extra-legal measures against suspicious populations. These include the by-now well-known institutions of Guantanomo Bay and Abu Ghraib, and practices such as the suspension of habeus corpus, extraordinary rendition, detention without trial and indefinite detention. \n\n[SHOW FILM]\n\nCases such as those of Babar Ahmed and Talha Ahsan, both imprisoned in the UK awaiting extradition to the US on spurious terrorist-related charges (Ahsan suffers from Aspergers syndrome, is a poet and was a student at the time of his arrest in 2006) are examples of how normal legal procedures have been suspended in terrorist cases.\n\nThe overriding argument by those who favour the use of extraordinary measures is that 9/11 signalled the beginning of extraordinary times and that the threat of terrorist attacks is too great to risk erring on the side of liberty rather than security. The suppression of civil rights in the case of terrorist suspects is justified in the interests of protecting ‘our’ security.\n\nIn opposition, others argue that the suspension of normal legal procedures in terrorist cases is the beginning of a slippery slope that potentially leads to whole populations being subject to greater suspicion and threat. For example, the heightened security at airports, which the majority accepts as necessary, is an example of how we are already subjected to more control in what is claimed to be our own interest. \n\nWe are corralled into participating in this generalised vigilance too. For example, attendance taken by lecturers can be used by the Border Agency to check the legitimacy of students from countries considered to be associated with the terrorist threat. Similarly, lecturers were recently asked to check on Muslim students and report any suspicious behaviour.\n\n[film - find relevant]\n\n
  • 1. The post-9/11 world\n\nFor many political analysts, and certainly for the dominant political class in the US, the UK and their allies, the world changed forever on the 11th of September 2001. \n\nFor Samuel Huntington and his followers, the attacks on New York and Washington were proof of the clash of civilizations he had posited in the early 1990s. \n\nAs Steven Howe points out, the world is actually a less - not more - violent place since 2001. There are less conflicts around the globe and citizens of the UK are in fact less at risk from terrorist attacks than they were in the 1980s and 90s. \n\nHowever, there is a perception that global conflict and insecurity are on the rise. The cataclysmic events of 9/11 have enabled an ideological shift to occur. Due to the nature of the events themselves, but also to the decision to go to war in Afghanistan and Iraq, there is a global perception that the west is at war with the Muslim world in a clash of civilizations the outcome of which will determine how we all live our lives in the future. \n\nAs many commentators have observed, the world is not as different post-9/11 as this view would have us think. Many of the policies put in place after 9/11 were in fact continuing a political drive that had already begun in the 1980s and 1990s. The war in Afghanistan, for example, can be seen as a continuation of the war already fought against the Soviets there in the 1980s, with different enemies. The ongoing conflict in the Middle East predates 9/11.\n\nWhat has changed is the reframing of these type of conflicts as a global war (rather than one waged by a few nations) against something called Islam. This view paradoxically accepts the conservative Muslim belief in the ‘umma’ - the single Muslim nation. \n\nAs Steven Howe puts it, ‘Once upon a time, Britain’s inhabitants included several hundred thousand Pakistanis and Bangladeshis - or people with family origins in these countries - plus smaller but significant communities of Egyptians, Turks, Somalis and many more. Remarkably, they have all vanished in the past decade or so. In the places where they used to live, a completely new set of people has replaced them: people called Muslims. This vast act of ethnic cleansing has happened silently, almost without remark.’\n\n2. The politics of fear\n\nWhatever perspective one holds on the reasons for the invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as the plans mooted to invade Iran today, they have been enabled by placing an emphasis on human security.\n\nBecause 9/11 involved ordinary people on commuter planes, the idea that terrorists can attack anywhere at any time has been a strong motivation in support for extraordinary measures under the ‘war on terror’. A direct correlation is made between the security of populations in the West and the military interventions into Iraq and Afghanistan. \n\nHowever, it can be argued that the terrorist threat has in fact increased since the US-led invasion of Afghanistan and that the fact that ‘home-grown’ terrorists carried out attacks such as the 7/7 bombings means that the war on terror has failed to make us safer. \n\nNevertheless, the politics of fear are a strong motivator in lending legitimacy to the ‘war on terror’. It has also impacted upon the way in which people living in multicultural societies view people perceived as Muslims. As David Cole, among others, has pointed out many people perceived to be Muslim, due to an association with having brown skin for example, become the targets of heightened security measures or suspicion from their fellow citizens. \n\nFor example, Balbir Singh Sodhi was gunned down on September 15, 2001 in Mesa, Arizona. The turban-wearing Sikh was killed outside his gas station. Sodhi’s killer spent the hours before the murder in a bar, bragging of his intention to “kill the ragheads responsible for September 11.” \n\nSimilarly, the shooting of Jean-Charles de Menezes by the Metropolitan Police in Stockwell in July 2005, a Brazilian thought to resemble one of the people behind the failed terrorist attacks of July 21 2005, is evidence of how fear provokes knee jerk reactions. The failure of the inquiry held into the de Menezes shooting to indict the police officers responsible could be taken as further evidence of how the politics of fear and the desire for security may legitimate miscarriages of justice in the name of the struggle against terrorism. \n\n3. Hearts and minds\n\nThe war on terror, at home and abroad, has a strong ideological component that sets out not only to combat terrorism militarily but to change beliefs and behaviours. The so-called ‘battle for hearts and minds’ became more important once it was found that Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction. The aim in Iraq became to bring democracy and freedom to a people suffering under a cruel dictatorship; a similar motivation underpinned NATO’s recent involvement in Libya. \n\nThe battle for hearts and minds is predicated on the idea that the West is intrinsically free and democratic with societies organised along principles of tolerance where respect for the rule of law is paramount. Non-western societies, such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, or Iran have not benefited from such freedoms yet their people crave them. It is for this reason that pro-imperialist thinkers, such as the historian Niall Ferguson, talk about ‘humanitarian imperialism’ or ‘empire by invitation’ to describe the invasions and occupations of the 2000s. \n\nThe idea is that taking over a country and deposing its despotic ruler, even if lives are lost in what the Bush administration called ‘collateral damage’, is better than doing nothing because of the ultimate prize: democracy. \n\nIn tandem, a parallel process is taking place within western countries with Muslim populations based on the fear that radicalised Islam is taking hold within the West itself. The younger generation of Muslims in Britain, France, the Netherlands, and so on is seen as being more conservatively religious than its parents’ one. \n\nFor example, Channel is part of the Prevent programme focused on halting radicalisation among Muslim youth. According to a report by Arun Kundnani, over 200 people have been identified through the Channel programme as would-be violent extremists - the overwhelming majority young Muslims. \n\nIn a number of areas, teachers, youth workers and other professionals working with young Muslims have been briefed by officers of the local police counter-terrorism unit on the indicators of extremism to look out for. One such officer, interviewed by Arun Kundnani, told him that he was visiting nursery schools in Birmingham to advise teachers that children as young as four could be at risk of radicalisation. He said that signs of radicalisation among toddlers include saying that Christians are bad or drawing pictures of bombs.\n\n4. State of exception \n\nWe came across the concept of Agamben’s ‘State of exception’ in week 5 in relation to the neoliberal state. The belief that 9/11 signalled a new political era has legitimated what some have described as a permanent state of exception where the normal rule of law has been suspended in favour of a permanent acceptance of extraordinary, extra-legal measures against suspicious populations. These include the by-now well-known institutions of Guantanomo Bay and Abu Ghraib, and practices such as the suspension of habeus corpus, extraordinary rendition, detention without trial and indefinite detention. \n\n[SHOW FILM]\n\nCases such as those of Babar Ahmed and Talha Ahsan, both imprisoned in the UK awaiting extradition to the US on spurious terrorist-related charges (Ahsan suffers from Aspergers syndrome, is a poet and was a student at the time of his arrest in 2006) are examples of how normal legal procedures have been suspended in terrorist cases.\n\nThe overriding argument by those who favour the use of extraordinary measures is that 9/11 signalled the beginning of extraordinary times and that the threat of terrorist attacks is too great to risk erring on the side of liberty rather than security. The suppression of civil rights in the case of terrorist suspects is justified in the interests of protecting ‘our’ security.\n\nIn opposition, others argue that the suspension of normal legal procedures in terrorist cases is the beginning of a slippery slope that potentially leads to whole populations being subject to greater suspicion and threat. For example, the heightened security at airports, which the majority accepts as necessary, is an example of how we are already subjected to more control in what is claimed to be our own interest. \n\nWe are corralled into participating in this generalised vigilance too. For example, attendance taken by lecturers can be used by the Border Agency to check the legitimacy of students from countries considered to be associated with the terrorist threat. Similarly, lecturers were recently asked to check on Muslim students and report any suspicious behaviour.\n\n[film - find relevant]\n\n
  • 1. The post-9/11 world\n\nFor many political analysts, and certainly for the dominant political class in the US, the UK and their allies, the world changed forever on the 11th of September 2001. \n\nFor Samuel Huntington and his followers, the attacks on New York and Washington were proof of the clash of civilizations he had posited in the early 1990s. \n\nAs Steven Howe points out, the world is actually a less - not more - violent place since 2001. There are less conflicts around the globe and citizens of the UK are in fact less at risk from terrorist attacks than they were in the 1980s and 90s. \n\nHowever, there is a perception that global conflict and insecurity are on the rise. The cataclysmic events of 9/11 have enabled an ideological shift to occur. Due to the nature of the events themselves, but also to the decision to go to war in Afghanistan and Iraq, there is a global perception that the west is at war with the Muslim world in a clash of civilizations the outcome of which will determine how we all live our lives in the future. \n\nAs many commentators have observed, the world is not as different post-9/11 as this view would have us think. Many of the policies put in place after 9/11 were in fact continuing a political drive that had already begun in the 1980s and 1990s. The war in Afghanistan, for example, can be seen as a continuation of the war already fought against the Soviets there in the 1980s, with different enemies. The ongoing conflict in the Middle East predates 9/11.\n\nWhat has changed is the reframing of these type of conflicts as a global war (rather than one waged by a few nations) against something called Islam. This view paradoxically accepts the conservative Muslim belief in the ‘umma’ - the single Muslim nation. \n\nAs Steven Howe puts it, ‘Once upon a time, Britain’s inhabitants included several hundred thousand Pakistanis and Bangladeshis - or people with family origins in these countries - plus smaller but significant communities of Egyptians, Turks, Somalis and many more. Remarkably, they have all vanished in the past decade or so. In the places where they used to live, a completely new set of people has replaced them: people called Muslims. This vast act of ethnic cleansing has happened silently, almost without remark.’\n\n2. The politics of fear\n\nWhatever perspective one holds on the reasons for the invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as the plans mooted to invade Iran today, they have been enabled by placing an emphasis on human security.\n\nBecause 9/11 involved ordinary people on commuter planes, the idea that terrorists can attack anywhere at any time has been a strong motivation in support for extraordinary measures under the ‘war on terror’. A direct correlation is made between the security of populations in the West and the military interventions into Iraq and Afghanistan. \n\nHowever, it can be argued that the terrorist threat has in fact increased since the US-led invasion of Afghanistan and that the fact that ‘home-grown’ terrorists carried out attacks such as the 7/7 bombings means that the war on terror has failed to make us safer. \n\nNevertheless, the politics of fear are a strong motivator in lending legitimacy to the ‘war on terror’. It has also impacted upon the way in which people living in multicultural societies view people perceived as Muslims. As David Cole, among others, has pointed out many people perceived to be Muslim, due to an association with having brown skin for example, become the targets of heightened security measures or suspicion from their fellow citizens. \n\nFor example, Balbir Singh Sodhi was gunned down on September 15, 2001 in Mesa, Arizona. The turban-wearing Sikh was killed outside his gas station. Sodhi’s killer spent the hours before the murder in a bar, bragging of his intention to “kill the ragheads responsible for September 11.” \n\nSimilarly, the shooting of Jean-Charles de Menezes by the Metropolitan Police in Stockwell in July 2005, a Brazilian thought to resemble one of the people behind the failed terrorist attacks of July 21 2005, is evidence of how fear provokes knee jerk reactions. The failure of the inquiry held into the de Menezes shooting to indict the police officers responsible could be taken as further evidence of how the politics of fear and the desire for security may legitimate miscarriages of justice in the name of the struggle against terrorism. \n\n3. Hearts and minds\n\nThe war on terror, at home and abroad, has a strong ideological component that sets out not only to combat terrorism militarily but to change beliefs and behaviours. The so-called ‘battle for hearts and minds’ became more important once it was found that Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction. The aim in Iraq became to bring democracy and freedom to a people suffering under a cruel dictatorship; a similar motivation underpinned NATO’s recent involvement in Libya. \n\nThe battle for hearts and minds is predicated on the idea that the West is intrinsically free and democratic with societies organised along principles of tolerance where respect for the rule of law is paramount. Non-western societies, such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, or Iran have not benefited from such freedoms yet their people crave them. It is for this reason that pro-imperialist thinkers, such as the historian Niall Ferguson, talk about ‘humanitarian imperialism’ or ‘empire by invitation’ to describe the invasions and occupations of the 2000s. \n\nThe idea is that taking over a country and deposing its despotic ruler, even if lives are lost in what the Bush administration called ‘collateral damage’, is better than doing nothing because of the ultimate prize: democracy. \n\nIn tandem, a parallel process is taking place within western countries with Muslim populations based on the fear that radicalised Islam is taking hold within the West itself. The younger generation of Muslims in Britain, France, the Netherlands, and so on is seen as being more conservatively religious than its parents’ one. \n\nFor example, Channel is part of the Prevent programme focused on halting radicalisation among Muslim youth. According to a report by Arun Kundnani, over 200 people have been identified through the Channel programme as would-be violent extremists - the overwhelming majority young Muslims. \n\nIn a number of areas, teachers, youth workers and other professionals working with young Muslims have been briefed by officers of the local police counter-terrorism unit on the indicators of extremism to look out for. One such officer, interviewed by Arun Kundnani, told him that he was visiting nursery schools in Birmingham to advise teachers that children as young as four could be at risk of radicalisation. He said that signs of radicalisation among toddlers include saying that Christians are bad or drawing pictures of bombs.\n\n4. State of exception \n\nWe came across the concept of Agamben’s ‘State of exception’ in week 5 in relation to the neoliberal state. The belief that 9/11 signalled a new political era has legitimated what some have described as a permanent state of exception where the normal rule of law has been suspended in favour of a permanent acceptance of extraordinary, extra-legal measures against suspicious populations. These include the by-now well-known institutions of Guantanomo Bay and Abu Ghraib, and practices such as the suspension of habeus corpus, extraordinary rendition, detention without trial and indefinite detention. \n\n[SHOW FILM]\n\nCases such as those of Babar Ahmed and Talha Ahsan, both imprisoned in the UK awaiting extradition to the US on spurious terrorist-related charges (Ahsan suffers from Aspergers syndrome, is a poet and was a student at the time of his arrest in 2006) are examples of how normal legal procedures have been suspended in terrorist cases.\n\nThe overriding argument by those who favour the use of extraordinary measures is that 9/11 signalled the beginning of extraordinary times and that the threat of terrorist attacks is too great to risk erring on the side of liberty rather than security. The suppression of civil rights in the case of terrorist suspects is justified in the interests of protecting ‘our’ security.\n\nIn opposition, others argue that the suspension of normal legal procedures in terrorist cases is the beginning of a slippery slope that potentially leads to whole populations being subject to greater suspicion and threat. For example, the heightened security at airports, which the majority accepts as necessary, is an example of how we are already subjected to more control in what is claimed to be our own interest. \n\nWe are corralled into participating in this generalised vigilance too. For example, attendance taken by lecturers can be used by the Border Agency to check the legitimacy of students from countries considered to be associated with the terrorist threat. Similarly, lecturers were recently asked to check on Muslim students and report any suspicious behaviour.\n\n[film - find relevant]\n\n
  • 1. The post-9/11 world\n\nFor many political analysts, and certainly for the dominant political class in the US, the UK and their allies, the world changed forever on the 11th of September 2001. \n\nFor Samuel Huntington and his followers, the attacks on New York and Washington were proof of the clash of civilizations he had posited in the early 1990s. \n\nAs Steven Howe points out, the world is actually a less - not more - violent place since 2001. There are less conflicts around the globe and citizens of the UK are in fact less at risk from terrorist attacks than they were in the 1980s and 90s. \n\nHowever, there is a perception that global conflict and insecurity are on the rise. The cataclysmic events of 9/11 have enabled an ideological shift to occur. Due to the nature of the events themselves, but also to the decision to go to war in Afghanistan and Iraq, there is a global perception that the west is at war with the Muslim world in a clash of civilizations the outcome of which will determine how we all live our lives in the future. \n\nAs many commentators have observed, the world is not as different post-9/11 as this view would have us think. Many of the policies put in place after 9/11 were in fact continuing a political drive that had already begun in the 1980s and 1990s. The war in Afghanistan, for example, can be seen as a continuation of the war already fought against the Soviets there in the 1980s, with different enemies. The ongoing conflict in the Middle East predates 9/11.\n\nWhat has changed is the reframing of these type of conflicts as a global war (rather than one waged by a few nations) against something called Islam. This view paradoxically accepts the conservative Muslim belief in the ‘umma’ - the single Muslim nation. \n\nAs Steven Howe puts it, ‘Once upon a time, Britain’s inhabitants included several hundred thousand Pakistanis and Bangladeshis - or people with family origins in these countries - plus smaller but significant communities of Egyptians, Turks, Somalis and many more. Remarkably, they have all vanished in the past decade or so. In the places where they used to live, a completely new set of people has replaced them: people called Muslims. This vast act of ethnic cleansing has happened silently, almost without remark.’\n\n2. The politics of fear\n\nWhatever perspective one holds on the reasons for the invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as the plans mooted to invade Iran today, they have been enabled by placing an emphasis on human security.\n\nBecause 9/11 involved ordinary people on commuter planes, the idea that terrorists can attack anywhere at any time has been a strong motivation in support for extraordinary measures under the ‘war on terror’. A direct correlation is made between the security of populations in the West and the military interventions into Iraq and Afghanistan. \n\nHowever, it can be argued that the terrorist threat has in fact increased since the US-led invasion of Afghanistan and that the fact that ‘home-grown’ terrorists carried out attacks such as the 7/7 bombings means that the war on terror has failed to make us safer. \n\nNevertheless, the politics of fear are a strong motivator in lending legitimacy to the ‘war on terror’. It has also impacted upon the way in which people living in multicultural societies view people perceived as Muslims. As David Cole, among others, has pointed out many people perceived to be Muslim, due to an association with having brown skin for example, become the targets of heightened security measures or suspicion from their fellow citizens. \n\nFor example, Balbir Singh Sodhi was gunned down on September 15, 2001 in Mesa, Arizona. The turban-wearing Sikh was killed outside his gas station. Sodhi’s killer spent the hours before the murder in a bar, bragging of his intention to “kill the ragheads responsible for September 11.” \n\nSimilarly, the shooting of Jean-Charles de Menezes by the Metropolitan Police in Stockwell in July 2005, a Brazilian thought to resemble one of the people behind the failed terrorist attacks of July 21 2005, is evidence of how fear provokes knee jerk reactions. The failure of the inquiry held into the de Menezes shooting to indict the police officers responsible could be taken as further evidence of how the politics of fear and the desire for security may legitimate miscarriages of justice in the name of the struggle against terrorism. \n\n3. Hearts and minds\n\nThe war on terror, at home and abroad, has a strong ideological component that sets out not only to combat terrorism militarily but to change beliefs and behaviours. The so-called ‘battle for hearts and minds’ became more important once it was found that Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction. The aim in Iraq became to bring democracy and freedom to a people suffering under a cruel dictatorship; a similar motivation underpinned NATO’s recent involvement in Libya. \n\nThe battle for hearts and minds is predicated on the idea that the West is intrinsically free and democratic with societies organised along principles of tolerance where respect for the rule of law is paramount. Non-western societies, such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, or Iran have not benefited from such freedoms yet their people crave them. It is for this reason that pro-imperialist thinkers, such as the historian Niall Ferguson, talk about ‘humanitarian imperialism’ or ‘empire by invitation’ to describe the invasions and occupations of the 2000s. \n\nThe idea is that taking over a country and deposing its despotic ruler, even if lives are lost in what the Bush administration called ‘collateral damage’, is better than doing nothing because of the ultimate prize: democracy. \n\nIn tandem, a parallel process is taking place within western countries with Muslim populations based on the fear that radicalised Islam is taking hold within the West itself. The younger generation of Muslims in Britain, France, the Netherlands, and so on is seen as being more conservatively religious than its parents’ one. \n\nFor example, Channel is part of the Prevent programme focused on halting radicalisation among Muslim youth. According to a report by Arun Kundnani, over 200 people have been identified through the Channel programme as would-be violent extremists - the overwhelming majority young Muslims. \n\nIn a number of areas, teachers, youth workers and other professionals working with young Muslims have been briefed by officers of the local police counter-terrorism unit on the indicators of extremism to look out for. One such officer, interviewed by Arun Kundnani, told him that he was visiting nursery schools in Birmingham to advise teachers that children as young as four could be at risk of radicalisation. He said that signs of radicalisation among toddlers include saying that Christians are bad or drawing pictures of bombs.\n\n4. State of exception \n\nWe came across the concept of Agamben’s ‘State of exception’ in week 5 in relation to the neoliberal state. The belief that 9/11 signalled a new political era has legitimated what some have described as a permanent state of exception where the normal rule of law has been suspended in favour of a permanent acceptance of extraordinary, extra-legal measures against suspicious populations. These include the by-now well-known institutions of Guantanomo Bay and Abu Ghraib, and practices such as the suspension of habeus corpus, extraordinary rendition, detention without trial and indefinite detention. \n\n[SHOW FILM]\n\nCases such as those of Babar Ahmed and Talha Ahsan, both imprisoned in the UK awaiting extradition to the US on spurious terrorist-related charges (Ahsan suffers from Aspergers syndrome, is a poet and was a student at the time of his arrest in 2006) are examples of how normal legal procedures have been suspended in terrorist cases.\n\nThe overriding argument by those who favour the use of extraordinary measures is that 9/11 signalled the beginning of extraordinary times and that the threat of terrorist attacks is too great to risk erring on the side of liberty rather than security. The suppression of civil rights in the case of terrorist suspects is justified in the interests of protecting ‘our’ security.\n\nIn opposition, others argue that the suspension of normal legal procedures in terrorist cases is the beginning of a slippery slope that potentially leads to whole populations being subject to greater suspicion and threat. For example, the heightened security at airports, which the majority accepts as necessary, is an example of how we are already subjected to more control in what is claimed to be our own interest. \n\nWe are corralled into participating in this generalised vigilance too. For example, attendance taken by lecturers can be used by the Border Agency to check the legitimacy of students from countries considered to be associated with the terrorist threat. Similarly, lecturers were recently asked to check on Muslim students and report any suspicious behaviour.\n\n[film - find relevant]\n\n
  • The spat between Martin Amis and Terry Eagleton has become emblematic of the ideological framing of the war on terror and the clash of civilizations as a fight for liberty and modernity against unfreedom and a return to what some see as the ‘dark ages’.\n\nWhile, for Martin Amis, suppression of the rights of Muslims is justified because of what he sees as their attack on western values and societies, others such as Eagleton see this as arrogant, racist imperialism. \n\n[SHOW INTRO TO I/VIEW]\n\nThere are two main themes expressed in the Amis-Eagleton argument which are exemplary of the wider ideological debate instigated by the politics of the post 9/11 world.\n\nThe first relates to the idea of liberty and political liberalism.\n\nThe second concerns secularism and religion and the question of whether we are living through a post-secular age. This question has led secularists such as Amis, as well as people like Richard Dawkins, to question whether there is a challenge to modernity from religion, in particular Islam. \n\nLiberty\n\nFor many in the West, the rise of political Islam poses a fundamental threat to the values of liberty which are deemed to be uniquely western in origin. Rhetoric about the non-western world, in general, and the Muslim world in particular is filled with references to its lack of individual freedom as opposed to the West.\n\nHowever, while on the one hand, populations of countries such as Iraq under Saddam Hussein or Libya under Col. Gaddafi are portrayed as yearning for western style freedoms, on the other, Muslim/Arab culture (the two are often confused) are often seen as fundamentally unfree.\n\nFor example, Claudia Aradau notes how “Faced with the looting that the demise of Saddam Hussein triggered in Iraq, the US defense secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, expressed the challenge of excessive freedom for the rationalities of order and discipline: “Freedom’s untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things. . . . They’re also free to live their lives and do wonderful things. And that’s what’s going to happen here.”\n\nThe approach to the clash of civilizations within European countries in particular focused on the need for liberalism to prevail over what is seen as Muslim illiberalism. Examples of Muslim illiberalism included the veil, niqab or burka worn by religious women, as well as extreme cases of forced marriage and honour killings rewritten as particularly Musim crimes. \n\nAs the journalist Gary Younge notes, forced marriage is actually kidnapping and honour killing, murder. However, there is a need to perceive these crimes as different from similar crimes committed by the general population when carried out by Muslims. \n\nIn his book Veil: Mirror of identity, the German sociologist Christian Joppke argues that the issue of the Islamic veil (hijab) is in fact a question about political liberalism. He discusses the various ways in which the wearing of the veil has been approached in different European countries, from the French ban to the more relaxed British approach. He concludes that the decision to ban the veil/burka or not is related to the classic liberal problem of the ‘toleration of the intolerant’. Joppke sees Islam as utterly incompatible with liberal democracy. \n\nHe argues that liberalism is both a way of life in itself as well as a way for managing a variety of different ways of life. He claims that the latter ‘encourages illiberal extremism’. He concludes that the only way to avoid liberalism becoming its own victim is to use illiberal measures that will ultimately preserve liberalism as a way of life. Therefore, he advocates that banning the veil/burka in France was correct because it curtails the freedom of the illiberal few for the good of the liberal majority.\n\nPost-secularism\n\nSeveral scholars are arguing that we need to understand the current age as a post-secular one. The rise in religious affiliation is a sign of a fundamental questioning the the supremacy of western modernity and Enlightenment ideals which, according to some, have been used as means to oppress non-western people (e.g. Said, Orientalism).\n\nLike the argument about liberty and liberalism, defenders of the western ‘war on terror’ see the clash of civilizations as a broader fight between secular rationality and religious unreason. Prominent figures such as Richard Dawkins and Peter Tatchell have launched attacks on religion in general as a threat against the modern separation of Church and state . \n\nHowever, critics have argued that these generalised attacks nonetheless see Islam as more profoundly dangerous than other religions. For example, Richard Dawkins claimed "I'm reasonably optimistic in America and Europe. I'm pessimistic about the Islamic world. I regard Islam as one of the great evils in the world.”\n\nSaba Mahmood, writing about the reaction to the publication of the cartoons of Muhammed in the Danish newspaper Jyllands Posten, argues that a double standard was at play in how reactions to the cartoons were perceived. Muslims who were outraged at the cartoons were seen as being against freedom of speech including the freedom to laugh at religion, seen by some as a fundamental human right. \n\nHowever, she rightly shows that in Europe the separation of the Church and the State is not assured in most countries and blasphemy laws exist protecting the religious against attacks. For example, the same newspaper that published the cartoons had refused to publish drawings mocking Jesus Christ for fear of provoking an outcry among Danish Christians.\n\nDespite the fact that extreme views are held by orthodox members of all the three monotheistic religions, neither Christianity nor Judaism is ever seen as posing the same kind of threat as Islam. Saba Mahmood argues that this is because there is no true understanding of how Islam as a religion is lived by most people who practice it. \n\nIn conclusion, both the debate on liberalism and on secularism presuppose that these are neutral ideologies that are unconnected to the particular context in which they developed - Europe and the West. This lack of historicisation and contextualisation allows them to be set as the norm according to which all other ways of life should be judged. However, the secularism of Richard Dawkins may be seen as ideologically dogmatic as Islamic fundamentalism. The militant secularism of the French state with its ban on the wearing of the hijab (in schools) or the burka could be experienced as radical as extreme conservative religious views depending on one’s own subjective point of view.\n\nAt the end work in buzz groups on the question - To what extent do you think we need to be ‘illiberal to be liberal’?\n\n
  • 1. Multicultural crisis\n\nMany of the problems associated with the perceived clash of civilizations have been put down to a crisis of multiculturalism in western societies. \n\nThe notion that multiculturalism has become excessive and overly permissive gained ground in the early 2000s. For example, in a highly influential Prospect magazine article, David Goodhart argued that European immigration societies had become ‘too diverse’, leading to a lack of social solidarity between citizens. He claimed that the welfare state can only function if people recognise their fellow citizens as similar to them; once societies become too diverse, with too many people of immigrant origin, people no longer to participate in a common society as they fear that their taxes will be used to pay for people with whom they have nothing in common.\n\nIn the same year - 2004 - the head of the then Commission for Racial Equality, Trevor Philips, claimed that British society was ‘sleepwalking to segregation’ and that a multicultural ideal based on different cultural groups who knew nothing about each other’s way of life was leading Britain down the road of ghettoes and the break-down of society. In reality, Britain has the highest number of people of mixed-heritage in Europe.\n\nIn 2010, European leaders such as David Cameron and Angela Merkel also spoke out against multiculturalism. Merkel called it an ‘utter failure’ while Cameron spoke of a ‘state doctrine of multiculturalism’ that has enabled radicalisation and terrorism. He said that “we need a lot less of the passive tolerance of recent years and much more active, muscular liberalism.”\n\nHowever, as my latest book reveals, the critique of multiculturalism is not so much an attack on multicultural policies which have been very patchy and still continue in some form or another. In fact, the crisis of multiculturalism is the expression of having a problem with too much culture of the wrong kind. There is a fear that European no longer know their own culture because they have been too open to the cultures of others. In response there has been a renewed emphasis on national values and a crackdown on immigration as well as a focus on integration, both for new migrants and for citizens of European countries from immigrant backgrounds.\n\n2. The tyranny of guilt\n\nSeveral public thinkers have claimed that too much openness, liberality and tolerance to other cultures and ways of life is at the root of the problems with multiculturalism. For example, the French philosopher Pascal Bruckner published a book called ‘The Tyranny of Guilt: an essay on European masochism’ in which he said that European nations have been a victim of their own guilt for colonialism and that this has been responsible for allowing fundamentalist minorities to gain the upper hand, both in Europe and globally. What is needed is an unabashed return to proclaiming the superiority of western progress which led to it becoming globally dominant in the first place. \n\nThis approach has led to a reevaluation of the teaching of the history of colonialism. For example, in 2003, a law was passed in France making it mandatory to teach about the achievements of colonialism in Algeria and the sacrifice made by French people in the colonies. Similarly, the historian Niall Ferguson, who calls himself “a fully paid-up member of the neoimperialist gang” has been invited by the UK education minister Michael Gove to help rewrite the school history curriculum. \n\n3. A decaying West\n\nThe urgency in stopping the tide of radical Islam, dismantling multiculturalism and forcing integration is seen as due to the risk run by the West unless it takes extreme measures to save itself. Concepts such as ‘Eurabia’ and ‘Londonistan’ have been used by right-wing pundits such as Bat Ye’Or and Melanie Philips. Europeans are seen as having too few children, leading to minority white cities in the not so distant future. Moreover, western culture is seen as too fluid, open and hesitant when confronted with a confident Muslim culture.\n\nThe journalist Christopher Caldwell in his book ‘Reflections on the Revolution in Europe: Can Europe be the same with different people in it?’ warned against what may seem like the innocuous effects of diversity. In this quote, he argues that the very things that appear to make Europe more interesting (e.g. food from all over the world, readily available) are exactly the things that will undo Europe:\n\n“If the spread of Pakistani cuisine is the single greatest improvement in British public life over the past half-century, it is also worth noting that the bombs used for the failed London transport attacks of July 21, 2005, were made from a mix of hydrogen peroxide and chapatti flour. Immigration is not enhancing or validating European culture; it is supplanting it’ (Caldwell 2009: 17).”\n\n
  • 1. Multicultural crisis\n\nMany of the problems associated with the perceived clash of civilizations have been put down to a crisis of multiculturalism in western societies. \n\nThe notion that multiculturalism has become excessive and overly permissive gained ground in the early 2000s. For example, in a highly influential Prospect magazine article, David Goodhart argued that European immigration societies had become ‘too diverse’, leading to a lack of social solidarity between citizens. He claimed that the welfare state can only function if people recognise their fellow citizens as similar to them; once societies become too diverse, with too many people of immigrant origin, people no longer to participate in a common society as they fear that their taxes will be used to pay for people with whom they have nothing in common.\n\nIn the same year - 2004 - the head of the then Commission for Racial Equality, Trevor Philips, claimed that British society was ‘sleepwalking to segregation’ and that a multicultural ideal based on different cultural groups who knew nothing about each other’s way of life was leading Britain down the road of ghettoes and the break-down of society. In reality, Britain has the highest number of people of mixed-heritage in Europe.\n\nIn 2010, European leaders such as David Cameron and Angela Merkel also spoke out against multiculturalism. Merkel called it an ‘utter failure’ while Cameron spoke of a ‘state doctrine of multiculturalism’ that has enabled radicalisation and terrorism. He said that “we need a lot less of the passive tolerance of recent years and much more active, muscular liberalism.”\n\nHowever, as my latest book reveals, the critique of multiculturalism is not so much an attack on multicultural policies which have been very patchy and still continue in some form or another. In fact, the crisis of multiculturalism is the expression of having a problem with too much culture of the wrong kind. There is a fear that European no longer know their own culture because they have been too open to the cultures of others. In response there has been a renewed emphasis on national values and a crackdown on immigration as well as a focus on integration, both for new migrants and for citizens of European countries from immigrant backgrounds.\n\n2. The tyranny of guilt\n\nSeveral public thinkers have claimed that too much openness, liberality and tolerance to other cultures and ways of life is at the root of the problems with multiculturalism. For example, the French philosopher Pascal Bruckner published a book called ‘The Tyranny of Guilt: an essay on European masochism’ in which he said that European nations have been a victim of their own guilt for colonialism and that this has been responsible for allowing fundamentalist minorities to gain the upper hand, both in Europe and globally. What is needed is an unabashed return to proclaiming the superiority of western progress which led to it becoming globally dominant in the first place. \n\nThis approach has led to a reevaluation of the teaching of the history of colonialism. For example, in 2003, a law was passed in France making it mandatory to teach about the achievements of colonialism in Algeria and the sacrifice made by French people in the colonies. Similarly, the historian Niall Ferguson, who calls himself “a fully paid-up member of the neoimperialist gang” has been invited by the UK education minister Michael Gove to help rewrite the school history curriculum. \n\n3. A decaying West\n\nThe urgency in stopping the tide of radical Islam, dismantling multiculturalism and forcing integration is seen as due to the risk run by the West unless it takes extreme measures to save itself. Concepts such as ‘Eurabia’ and ‘Londonistan’ have been used by right-wing pundits such as Bat Ye’Or and Melanie Philips. Europeans are seen as having too few children, leading to minority white cities in the not so distant future. Moreover, western culture is seen as too fluid, open and hesitant when confronted with a confident Muslim culture.\n\nThe journalist Christopher Caldwell in his book ‘Reflections on the Revolution in Europe: Can Europe be the same with different people in it?’ warned against what may seem like the innocuous effects of diversity. In this quote, he argues that the very things that appear to make Europe more interesting (e.g. food from all over the world, readily available) are exactly the things that will undo Europe:\n\n“If the spread of Pakistani cuisine is the single greatest improvement in British public life over the past half-century, it is also worth noting that the bombs used for the failed London transport attacks of July 21, 2005, were made from a mix of hydrogen peroxide and chapatti flour. Immigration is not enhancing or validating European culture; it is supplanting it’ (Caldwell 2009: 17).”\n\n
  • 1. Multicultural crisis\n\nMany of the problems associated with the perceived clash of civilizations have been put down to a crisis of multiculturalism in western societies. \n\nThe notion that multiculturalism has become excessive and overly permissive gained ground in the early 2000s. For example, in a highly influential Prospect magazine article, David Goodhart argued that European immigration societies had become ‘too diverse’, leading to a lack of social solidarity between citizens. He claimed that the welfare state can only function if people recognise their fellow citizens as similar to them; once societies become too diverse, with too many people of immigrant origin, people no longer to participate in a common society as they fear that their taxes will be used to pay for people with whom they have nothing in common.\n\nIn the same year - 2004 - the head of the then Commission for Racial Equality, Trevor Philips, claimed that British society was ‘sleepwalking to segregation’ and that a multicultural ideal based on different cultural groups who knew nothing about each other’s way of life was leading Britain down the road of ghettoes and the break-down of society. In reality, Britain has the highest number of people of mixed-heritage in Europe.\n\nIn 2010, European leaders such as David Cameron and Angela Merkel also spoke out against multiculturalism. Merkel called it an ‘utter failure’ while Cameron spoke of a ‘state doctrine of multiculturalism’ that has enabled radicalisation and terrorism. He said that “we need a lot less of the passive tolerance of recent years and much more active, muscular liberalism.”\n\nHowever, as my latest book reveals, the critique of multiculturalism is not so much an attack on multicultural policies which have been very patchy and still continue in some form or another. In fact, the crisis of multiculturalism is the expression of having a problem with too much culture of the wrong kind. There is a fear that European no longer know their own culture because they have been too open to the cultures of others. In response there has been a renewed emphasis on national values and a crackdown on immigration as well as a focus on integration, both for new migrants and for citizens of European countries from immigrant backgrounds.\n\n2. The tyranny of guilt\n\nSeveral public thinkers have claimed that too much openness, liberality and tolerance to other cultures and ways of life is at the root of the problems with multiculturalism. For example, the French philosopher Pascal Bruckner published a book called ‘The Tyranny of Guilt: an essay on European masochism’ in which he said that European nations have been a victim of their own guilt for colonialism and that this has been responsible for allowing fundamentalist minorities to gain the upper hand, both in Europe and globally. What is needed is an unabashed return to proclaiming the superiority of western progress which led to it becoming globally dominant in the first place. \n\nThis approach has led to a reevaluation of the teaching of the history of colonialism. For example, in 2003, a law was passed in France making it mandatory to teach about the achievements of colonialism in Algeria and the sacrifice made by French people in the colonies. Similarly, the historian Niall Ferguson, who calls himself “a fully paid-up member of the neoimperialist gang” has been invited by the UK education minister Michael Gove to help rewrite the school history curriculum. \n\n3. A decaying West\n\nThe urgency in stopping the tide of radical Islam, dismantling multiculturalism and forcing integration is seen as due to the risk run by the West unless it takes extreme measures to save itself. Concepts such as ‘Eurabia’ and ‘Londonistan’ have been used by right-wing pundits such as Bat Ye’Or and Melanie Philips. Europeans are seen as having too few children, leading to minority white cities in the not so distant future. Moreover, western culture is seen as too fluid, open and hesitant when confronted with a confident Muslim culture.\n\nThe journalist Christopher Caldwell in his book ‘Reflections on the Revolution in Europe: Can Europe be the same with different people in it?’ warned against what may seem like the innocuous effects of diversity. In this quote, he argues that the very things that appear to make Europe more interesting (e.g. food from all over the world, readily available) are exactly the things that will undo Europe:\n\n“If the spread of Pakistani cuisine is the single greatest improvement in British public life over the past half-century, it is also worth noting that the bombs used for the failed London transport attacks of July 21, 2005, were made from a mix of hydrogen peroxide and chapatti flour. Immigration is not enhancing or validating European culture; it is supplanting it’ (Caldwell 2009: 17).”\n\n
  • 1. Burqas and bikinis\n\nTime cover of Aisha/Nazia demonstrates how brown/Muslim women’s bodies have been used as a battleground in the ideological consensus building post-9/11.\n\nWar in Afghanistan sold as a war to liberate Afghan women from Taliban although we know their plight is same/worse today\n\nWestern focus on honour killings and forced marriages portrays Muslims as diabolic - capable of worse crimes. So calling it honour killing rather than murder sets tis crime apart from other murders giving the impression that domestic violence is more prevalent amongst Muslims while statistically this is not the case. \n\nJoan W. Scott refers to the western approach to the treatment of women in Islam as ‘sexularism’. \nAccording to Scott, sexularism refers to the way in which secular European or western modernity is seen as leading naturally to sexual liberation and gender equality. However, this denies the fact that gender equality is anything but achieved in western contexts and makes presumptions about the link between the wearing of the veil/burka and women’s subjugation. \n\nAs Lila Abu-Lughod argues, the increase in veiling in the Arab world in the 1970s and 80s was in fact a symbol of modernisation and independence for many women. Similarly, many women who wear the veil today describe doing so as a sign of their political allegiance and critique of the West’s actions in the Muslim world. This view problematizes the view of the veil/burka as always a symbol of women’s oppression.\n\n2. Hijack this...\nSexuality has also been used as a means for dividing between ‘liberal’ and ‘illiberal’ societies. We give in an example in the book (from Lisa Duggan) of mainstream gay organisations who “objected during the invasion of Afghanistan to the publication of an AP photograph of a US warhead emblazoned with the words ‘Hijack this Fags’ not because of opposition to the war but because ‘“the message equates gays with the enemy”’ and dishonours gay servicemen objected during the invasion of Afghanistan to the publication of an AP photograph of a US warhead emblazoned with the words ‘Hijack this Fags’ not because of opposition to the war but because ‘“the message equates gays with the enemy”’ and dishonours gay servicemen.”\n\nThis is what some theorists such as Jasbir Puar have referred to as ‘homonationalism’ in which homosexuality is normalised in western societies in opposition to non-western ones despite the fact that equality for gays is far from achieved.\n\nIt is always worth ventilating the hypocrisy of the politics of freedom; that, for example, while the Danish People’s Party champion gay rights in Denmark, it formed an alliance in the European Parliament in 2009 with, among others, the Italian Lega Nord, whose deputies have called for ‘an ethnic cleansing of faggots’.\n\nIn this country it is important to remember that the leading far-right movement, the EDL, has a sizeable gay wing.\n\n\n
  • 1. Burqas and bikinis\n\nTime cover of Aisha/Nazia demonstrates how brown/Muslim women’s bodies have been used as a battleground in the ideological consensus building post-9/11.\n\nWar in Afghanistan sold as a war to liberate Afghan women from Taliban although we know their plight is same/worse today\n\nWestern focus on honour killings and forced marriages portrays Muslims as diabolic - capable of worse crimes. So calling it honour killing rather than murder sets tis crime apart from other murders giving the impression that domestic violence is more prevalent amongst Muslims while statistically this is not the case. \n\nJoan W. Scott refers to the western approach to the treatment of women in Islam as ‘sexularism’. \nAccording to Scott, sexularism refers to the way in which secular European or western modernity is seen as leading naturally to sexual liberation and gender equality. However, this denies the fact that gender equality is anything but achieved in western contexts and makes presumptions about the link between the wearing of the veil/burka and women’s subjugation. \n\nAs Lila Abu-Lughod argues, the increase in veiling in the Arab world in the 1970s and 80s was in fact a symbol of modernisation and independence for many women. Similarly, many women who wear the veil today describe doing so as a sign of their political allegiance and critique of the West’s actions in the Muslim world. This view problematizes the view of the veil/burka as always a symbol of women’s oppression.\n\n2. Hijack this...\nSexuality has also been used as a means for dividing between ‘liberal’ and ‘illiberal’ societies. We give in an example in the book (from Lisa Duggan) of mainstream gay organisations who “objected during the invasion of Afghanistan to the publication of an AP photograph of a US warhead emblazoned with the words ‘Hijack this Fags’ not because of opposition to the war but because ‘“the message equates gays with the enemy”’ and dishonours gay servicemen objected during the invasion of Afghanistan to the publication of an AP photograph of a US warhead emblazoned with the words ‘Hijack this Fags’ not because of opposition to the war but because ‘“the message equates gays with the enemy”’ and dishonours gay servicemen.”\n\nThis is what some theorists such as Jasbir Puar have referred to as ‘homonationalism’ in which homosexuality is normalised in western societies in opposition to non-western ones despite the fact that equality for gays is far from achieved.\n\nIt is always worth ventilating the hypocrisy of the politics of freedom; that, for example, while the Danish People’s Party champion gay rights in Denmark, it formed an alliance in the European Parliament in 2009 with, among others, the Italian Lega Nord, whose deputies have called for ‘an ethnic cleansing of faggots’.\n\nIn this country it is important to remember that the leading far-right movement, the EDL, has a sizeable gay wing.\n\n\n
  • \n
  • A Clash of Civilizations? Political Sociology Week 6

    1. 1. Political Sociology A Clash of Civilizations?
    2. 2. OverviewThe uses of ideologyThe clash of civilizations‘With us or with the terrorists’Liberals and fundamentalistsToo much diversityGender faultlines
    3. 3. Ideology
    4. 4. IdeologyThe origins ofideology
    5. 5. IdeologyThe origins ofideologyChanges in meaning
    6. 6. IdeologyThe origins ofideologyChanges in meaningMarxist critiques
    7. 7. IdeologyThe origins ofideologyChanges in meaningMarxist critiquesContemporary uses
    8. 8. The Clash of Civilizations “Huntington is an ideologist, someone who wants to make ‘civilizations’ and ‘identities’ into what they are not: shut-down, sealed-off entities that have been purged of the myriad currents and countercurrents that animate humanhistory, and that over centuries have made it possible for that history not onlyto contain wars of religion and imperial conquest but also to be one of exchange, cross-fertilization and sharing.” Edward Said (2001)
    9. 9. ‘With us or with the terrorists’
    10. 10. ‘With us or with the terrorists’The post-9/11 world
    11. 11. ‘With us or with the terrorists’The post-9/11 worldPolitics of fear
    12. 12. ‘With us or with the terrorists’The post-9/11 worldPolitics of fearHearts & minds
    13. 13. ‘With us or with the terrorists’The post-9/11 worldPolitics of fearHearts & mindsState of exception
    14. 14. Liberals and Fundamentalists “There’s a definite urge - don’t you have it? - to say, ‘TheMuslim community will have to suffer until its gets its house inorder’... They hate us for letting our children have sex and takedrugs - well, they’ve got to stop their children killing people.” Martin Amis (2006)
    15. 15. Too Much Diversity
    16. 16. Too Much Diversity Multicultural crisis
    17. 17. Too Much Diversity Multicultural crisis The tyranny of guilt
    18. 18. Too Much Diversity Multicultural crisis The tyranny of guilt A decaying West
    19. 19. Gender Faultlines
    20. 20. Gender FaultlinesBurkas & bikinis
    21. 21. Gender FaultlinesBurkas & bikinis‘Hijack this,Fags’
    22. 22. DiscussionWhy do you think that gender andsexuality have become the frontline inthe ‘clash of civilizations’?How does thinking about the veil lead toquestioning of gender norms in westernsocieties?In what ways can we bridge gaps inunderstanding of non-western approachesto religion and secularism?

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