Whiteness and Nationalism  book cover
1st Edition

Whiteness and Nationalism

Edited By

Nasar Meer

ISBN 9780367640323
Published June 1, 2022 by Routledge
144 Pages

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Book Description

Naming whiteness is becoming an increasingly pressing issue across a variety of social and political contexts. In this book, an international set of authors discuss how and why this has come to be the case.

Studying whiteness, as either a social identity or political ideology, is a relatively recent area of scholarship. Unusually, within the fields of race and ethnicity, it is a concept that sits at an intersection between historical privilege and identity. At the same time, ‘white privilege’ is not universally shared in (or can be distant to) how many white people feel they experience their identities. Whiteness as a site of privilege is therefore not absolute, but rather cross-cut by a range of other concerns, too. Nonetheless, recent political developments serve to illustrate the political potency of appeals to whiteness, in a way that suggests whiteness coupled with nationhood is a central social and political topic.

In this book, authors from the USA, Australia and Europe consider the contemporary relationships between whiteness and national identity by focusing on mainstream electoral politics, the ‘normalisation’ of white supremacy and where whiteness stands in relation to pluralised national identities.

The chapters in this book were originally published as a special issue of the journal, Identities: Global Studies in Culture and Power.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The wreckage of white supremacy, Nasar Meer

Chapter 1: Whiteness, populism and the racialisation of the working class in the United Kingdom and the United States, Aurelien Mondon & Aaron Winter

Chapter 2: Denmark’s blond vision and the fractal logics of a nation in danger, Peter Hervik

Chapter 3: Are French people white?: Towards an understanding of whiteness in Republican France, Jean Beaman

Chapter 4: The whiteness of cultural boundaries in France, Angéline Escafré-Dublet

Chapter 5: Reimagining racism: understanding the whiteness and nationhood strategies of British-born South Africans, Pauline Leonard

Chapter 6: Securing whiteness?: Critical Race Theory (CRT) and the securitization of Muslims in education, Damian Breen & Nasar Meer

Chapter 7: Looking as white: anti-racism apps, appearance and racialized embodiment, Alana Lentin


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Nasar Meer is Professor of Race, Identity and Citizenship and Director of RACE.ED at the University of Edinburgh, UK. He is a Royal Society of Edinburgh Research Fellow and Principal Investigator of the H2020-funded project Governance and Local Integration of Migrants and Europe's Refugees (GLIMER). He is a recipient of the Thomas Reid Medal for Excellence in the Social Sciences and former Minda de Gunzberg Fellow at Harvard University, USA.