Elite discourse and institutional racism

Teun A. van Dijk
Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona


Second draft, March 29, 2005


Elite discourse and institutional racism
Teun A. van Dijk
Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona

In this paper we examine some discursive aspects of the role of the elites and the institutions in the production and reproduction of racism in European societies. There are several reasons to focus on elite racism, rather than on „popular‟ racism (for details, see Van Dijk, 1993). First of all, many of the elites often claim that they have „of course‟ nothing to do with racism: Rather, respectable politicians of democratic parties, journalists of mainstream newspapers, or reputed scholars tend to blame others of racism, typically those at the extreme right, or the „uneducated‟ people in popular neighborhoods who are daily confronted with immigrants. Secondly, prejudice and discrimination are not innate but learned, and they are primarily learned from public discourse. Such discourse, such as political debates, news and opinion articles, TV programs, textbooks and scholarly works, are largely controlled by the elites. If such discourse would be systematically and predominantly non-racist or anti-racist, it is very unlikely that racism in society would be as widespread as it is, assuming that in many respects the elites are the moral guardians of society and usually give the good or the bad example of social practices.

rather than of the antiracist. and to be distinguished from the overt and blatant racism of the extreme right. we still need to investigate which forms such racism takes today. textbooks and „commonsense‟ discourses in everyday life. eugenetics. it is largely preformulated by the elites and their political leaders and mass media. there are a number of reasons to forward the thesis that the elites always have been. 1988. and legitimated by journalists. and are still today. Unesco. since elite racism is often quite subtle and indirect. and it is through their multifarious dominant discourses that they express and reproduce their beliefs. Wherever we find forms of „popular‟ racism. scholars. 1994. Their discourses found their way into novels. judges. as we know from the prevalent scientific literature in the 19th and large part of the 20th centuries (Barkan. the Holocaust. The racism of the elite is primarily discursive. science. Haghighat. segregation. 1983). Politicians. movies. However. And finally. etc) they may at least be blamed for insufficiently combating popular racism where they had the means and the opportunity to do so.Thirdly. similarly often denied by men. In sum. Apartheid and “ethnic cleansing” were racist practices engaged in by (then) „respectable‟ politicians. and managers primarily write and talk. where the elites did not explicitly engage in the production of prejudices and stereotypes and the exclusion of the Others from their own realm (politics. 1975. Colonialism. 1992. multicultural solution. 4 . or taken populist advantage of to limit immigration. The very notion of „race‟ was „invented‟ by scholars as was the notion of racial superiority. We may be so much accustomed to this kind of racism that we may not even notice it anymore – as has been the case with many forms of sexism. Shipman. scholars and scientists. we know from the history of racism that various elites have always played a prominent role in ethnic and racial domination. media. journalists. Chase. part of the problem of racism.

and legitimated by their elite leadership. I thus define the notion of „institutional racism‟ as the organized discursive practices of the elites. and especially its leaders are. An institution is as racist as its members. the media. scholarship and business enterprises.ideologies. Although a sociological account of institutional racism may abstract from individual social practices and speak of the actions or policies of organizations and institutions. education. one opinion article of a star reporter. One speech of a prominent politician. or the textbooks at school and the university. At the same time. plans and policies. In this paper. news reporting in the press. In Europe. as is the case for debates in parliament. I examine some of the properties of this discursive racism of the elites. it should be borne in mind that the discourses of these institutions are individual or collective products of their members. Domination is defined as power abuse of one group over another. but only want to stress that socially shared prejudices are jointly and collaboratively produced and reproduced by (collectives) of social members through the institutional discourses of the domains of politics. which we briefly need to define in order to understand the role of discourse and the elites in the reproduction of racism. or one book of a renowned scholar may have more negative effect than thousands of biased conversations in the street. This does not mean that we reduce racism to personal prejudice. Racism The notions of „elite racism‟ and „institutional racism‟ presuppose the concept of racism. the Americas and Australia. this means that a „white‟ majority (and sometimes a minority) dominates non-European minorities. Racism is primarily a system of domination and social inequality. and is 5 . on the bus or in a bar. bureaucratic text and talk of the city or national administration.

about immigrants and minorities. by various forms of discrimination. that is. Discourse is the social practice that relates these two realms of racism. discourse is virtually the only way racist prejudices are expressed and reproduced in society: these social cognitions are generally acquired through the mass media. Nearly everything most people know about non-European countries. some change agents among the political. media and scholarly elites may begin to formulate alternative discourses that question.enacted by two interrelated systems of everyday social and sociocognitive practices. on the one hand. which in turn are the basis of the social practices of discrimination and exclusion. and so on. friends or colleagues – conversations which themselves may again be inspired by what people see on TV or read in the newspaper. this holds for the reproduction of antiracism. The processes of the public production and reproduction of knowledge. and everyday conversations with family members. criticize and oppose dominant discourses and other 6 . and by prejudiced and stereotypical beliefs. the latter in many ways can be seen as the „reasons‟ or „motives‟ that explain and legitimate the former: People discriminate others because they believe that others are somehow inferior. As a consequence of minority resistance or outside pressure. At the same time. opinions and ideologies should thus be primarily defined in terms of the discursive practices of the dominant institutions and their elites. exclusion or problematization. By the same logic. they know from the mass media. and the same is true for their opinions and attitudes. textbooks. Indeed. attitudes and ideologies. on the other hand. This also holds for the reproduction of racist practices and ideologies. and the nearly exclusive social practice of the symbolic elites and the institutions: what these „do‟ they do by text or talk. have less rights. peers. It is itself a prominent social practice like others. marginalization.

sometimes also as a backlash against earlier civil rights movements and antiracist actions. 2004. the following books. 2004. though. and generally as a consequence of real or perceived increases of immigration (for details about contemporary racism in general. 2001. 1998). Wrench & Solomos. the mass media and scholarship endorses the antiracist ideologies of dissenting groups.b. Goldberg & Solomos. 2002. some forms of racism. 2000. Solomos & Back. Feagin. serious and systematic change is only possible when the majority of the elite leadership in politics. Cashmore. For the forms of „modern‟ racism currently prevalent in the countries where Europeans are dominant.practices. 2001. they are able to stimulate the formation of opposition movements. 2003. racism in particular. Sears. Bulmer & Solomos. see. 1993. Essed & Goldberg. Discourse 7 . as has been the case in postsegregationist USA. post-Apartheid South Africa. Essed. especially in politics. Marable. both in the USA as well as in Europe. parties or pressure groups. As soon as these voices of dissent have access to the means of public discourse. Feagin.g. Doane & Bonilla-Silva. e. Lauren. Vera & Batur. may even be said to be increasing. 2000. 1991. the media or scholarship. Boxill. antiracist resistance has so far played only a minor role in politics. or post-Holocaust Europe for the most extreme forms of racism and anti-Semitism. 2000.. 1994. García Martínez. 2002. Goldberg. 1996. 1996. among many others: Back & Solomos. as is also the case for antiracist movements in Europe and the Americas. and „white‟. Wieviorka. Sidanius & Bobo. 2003. 2002. European. NGOs. 2002. Again. Indeed. 1999a.

are expressed. That is. how else would people acquire prejudices and stereotypes about other people. Fortunately. political propaganda. advertising. as well as education and scholarship. They wield power by text and talk. whatever else they (also) are. engaged in or practiced as so many forms of text and talk. discourse and communication in modern societies. scholarly books and articles as well as business policies. deals and negotiations. How else could groups share the beliefs that give rise to discrimination and exclusion? It is therefore crucial that we study racism. or to explain how elite discourses may have deleterious effects on public opinion. and especially elite racism (as well as antiracism) through a detailed analysis of the discursive practices of the elites and the institutions – of parliamentary debates. news reports. including images. many forms of elite racism today are indirect and subtle. The same is true for the law and the courts. from laws and legislation and parliamentary debates. film and multimedia messages. the symbolic elites are primarily discursive elites. textbooks. as suggested. to government deliberations.Most studies of racism focus on forms of discrimination and exclusion. The media are broadly discursive. Indeed. the last decades has seen a broad development of discourse analysis in most of the humanities and the social sciences. especially since these are seldom based on everyday observation and interaction with the Others. decrees and decisions or party programs and propaganda. editorials. but also as an independent cross8 . or on prejudices and ideologies. as is also the case for sexism. We need sophisticated discourse analysis to show how such institutional practices are informed by racist underlying beliefs. not only as a „method‟ of more explicit analysis of discourse data. Racism without text and talk would probably be impossible. Such a detailed analysis is especially relevant because. and tend to ignore the fundamental role of language. opinion articles. also in the reproduction of racism. Politics and policies.

among many other things. speech acts. rhetoric. the subtle modifications of intonation or volume in speech. Parliamentary debates. we now know much more about the structures. In psychology we now know much more about the cognitive processes of the production and comprehension of discourse. and a host of other discursive practices have been studied in great detail. a detailed discourse analysis of racism 9 . These developments in discourse studies also allow a more sophisticated approach to the study of racism practices. In sum. especially of the symbolic elites. 1997). argumentation or conversational strategies. the interest in natural forms of discourse and communicative events had led to a broad movement of detailed ethnographic analyses of the forms and conditions of text and talk in interaction and communities. how discourse is memorized and how we learn from discourse (Van Dijk & Kintsch. textbooks. overall topics. and how people form mental models and socially shared representations about other people in this way.g. narrative or argumentative structure. Although there are still vast areas unexplored. schematic forms. We now are able to study. see. style. van Dijk. 1983). e. in order to detect underlying prejudices of language users and the institutions they represent. and now also focus on the large number of other structures and strategies of text and talk – such as their coherence. In the social sciences. syntax. including prejudices and ideologies. social and cultural contexts of discourse. and many others. news reports. Tannen & Hamilton. storytelling. This means that in linguistics we now know much more about language use than the analysis of words and sentences in grammar. everyday conversations. because we know how discourses are understood. Schiffrin. And beyond such studies of discourse. classroom and courtroom interaction. topic selection.. conversational strategies. 2001. scientific publications.discipline of discourse studies (of the many studies on discourse. processes. we are now also better able to gauge their effects in the public sphere. lexical choice.

Wrench & Solomos. Evens Foundation. we are here interested in the specific racisms practiced in contemporary Europe. Kalpaka & Räthzel. 1994. Blommaert & Verschueren. there are many forms of European racism directed at existing minorities in Europe that are not triggered by increasing immigration. 2004. 2000).. e. until today (Lauren. Hargreaves & Leaman. 1992. 1992. Europe For many reasons. the racism we are interested in here is „European‟ racism. Reisigl & Wodak. Bjørgo.g. 1988). Jäger. Poliakov.g. Wodak et al. as is most spectacularly the case for widespread anti-Semitism anywhere (Reisigl & Wodak. 1974. 1998. 1984.. 1993. It is customary to describe. 1987. 1992. 2001. Van Dijk. More specifically. 1998. 1993. We are only able to sketch a general tendency and then illustrate this with some examples of discourse racism in various countries (for detail.. There are however arguments that show that this immigration merely triggered or exacerbated what was there already. see. Wetherell & Potter. 1991. 2001. 1990) and the discrimination of 10 . Bataille & Wieviorka. but because historically European racism has been most pervasive and most destructive in the world. It is beyond the scope of this chapter to describe the details of the political and social forms such racism takes in various countries. 1992. e. Mudde. see. 1995. Wodak & Van Dijk. 1993). 2002. 2000. explain and even excuse current racism in Europe in relation to massive increases of non-European immigrants – a form of explanation that might be characterized as another form of blaming the victim. Not because white people are inherently racist. Butterwegge & Jäger. First of all.is a powerful tool in our understanding of the reproduction of ethnic and racial inequality in society (for studies on racism and discourse.

Delacampagne. One just has to read everyday texts in politics. Fredrickson. the media. travel. It is only as a consequence of the AntiSlavery movement in the 19th century. whose racism we examine here. we find that precisely the elites. the European elites have been writing racist texts about non-European Others even when these were not immigrants in Europe. until at least the Second World War. And finally. throughout the history of Europe. but precisely in the (popular or elite) neighborhoods where people fear possible immigration. and again such racism can hardly be attributed by immigration of the Others: it was the Europeans who immigrated. scholarship. but by the consistently negative portrayal inherent in the social representations about the Others throughout the ages (Barker. 1978. 1983. Secondly. Asians or American indigenous people were. and so on. the struggle against Apartheid and the shame about the ethnic slaughter in Rwanda and Bosnia. and then later of the post-war reactions to the Holocaust. San Román. 1986). but continues a long tradition. decolonization. In other words. during colonialism many Europeans engaged in many forms of racial discrimination and violence in the colonies. and is not caused by immigration. 2002). the Civil Rights movement in the USA. literature. not the exception. have less everyday contacts with immigrants. stole the land and dominated the Others. which is not most blatant in poor neighborhoods with many immigrants. examining patterns of contemporary racism in Europe. Racist practices and ideologies against non-Europeans were the official norm. and the activities of politics of the UNO and UNESCO. that a more generalized but 11 . the arts. 1999. This is also true for popular racism. Thirdly. to notice how widespread and blatant racist prejudices about Africans.Roma people (“gypsies”) especially in Eastern Europe and Spain (Garrido. contemporary racism in Europe is not a new invention.

exacerbated by the terrorist attacks of September 11 in the USA and March 11 in Spain. Whereas under colonialism especially focusing on Africans. as well as against Jews and Roma. not coincidentally affecting especially people from Africa. Halliday. The first is the contemporary variant of an old form of indigenous European racism and anti-Semitism with a very long history. Asia and Latin America. It should be noted though that the cultural grounds of contemporary racism should be seen as a more „acceptable‟ form of discriminating and excluding those who are also seen to be „racially‟ different – as is typically the case for the discrimination of Jews. Limiting immigration. 2004. 1988). among many other places (Goody. This means that we have two social and political currents in ethnic relations in Europe. also of refugees. and hence taking a more „racialized‟ form. the latter combined with islamophobia. public form of this kind of legal exclusion of the Others. demographic or other „reasonable‟ grounds. Lauren. on cultural. and hence also in North America and Europe (Barkan. that is. but on the other hand more subtle and indirect forms of discrimination and exclusion.. Asians and indigenous peoples in the Americas. 1992. contemporary European racism rather also focuses on culture and cultural differences. On the other hand. This is most clearly the case in the rejection of Islam. is the most obvious.fledgling norm against (blatant) racism developed in the world. and more concretely against „close‟ and hence „threatening‟ Turks and Arabs in particular. e. Turks and Arabs. and much less 12 . those that can be seen as „racial‟ others. and parallel to the daily manifestations of this „old‟ European racism.g. and especially Islamist fundamentalism. Australia and the Pacific. 2002). directed against nonEuropean peoples in general. we witness developments that incorporate on the one hand the official and „international‟ norms against blatant prejudice and discrimination as they also have been enshrined in laws and constitutions.

Thus. such developments are at first officially condemned and decried. allowing and exacerbating more and more legitimation of anti13 . And worse. But on the other hand liberal principles or Realpolitik usually get the upper hand. and on the other hand. In Italy. On the one hand. we may see that countries – such as the UK. Denmark and Holland more or less explicitly racist parties may win up till 30% of the vote and even become partners in government coalitions.on the one hand legislate against anti-Semitism and racism. restrict immigration. In the current situation these two currents combine in complex ways. and tolerate racist parties as part of the „democratic‟ consensus – as one opinion among others. Indeed. increasingly integrating anti-immigration policies. islamophobia and racism. France and Italy. as happened with Haider in Austria. on the basis of the prevalent non-racist norm. the media have played the same contradictory role. tolerate explicitly racist parties. Traditionally „tolerant‟ countries such as the Netherlands and the Scandinavian countries. and not only on the Right. But on the other hand. Whereas politics in Europe during the last decade has thus veered to the right. especially also after the deadly terrorist attacks by Islamist radicals. neighborhoods.immigrants from Eastern Europe. both in the institutions as well as in the public sphere. this kind of exclusion has become the norm in Europe. Austria. what were ideas and policies of racist parties one or two decades ago. are now increasingly the generally shared arguments of mainstream parties to limit immigration and to restrict the civil rights of refugees. as is the case in Denmark. have thus become hotbeds of increasing xenophobia. Germany and France -. we witness multiculturalism in the schools. immigrants or other minorities. including opposition against dominant government politics. NGOs and many other domains of civil society. and barely take energetic action against the many forms of everyday racism.

It is not surprising to see that many voters. even the antiracist norm seems to be waning in force when we witness that an increasing percentage of Europeans openly recognize. the people have learned the lesson from the very elite discourses in politics and the media. also those who have no daily dealings with immigrants. Elite racism thus becomes legitimated by popular racism. minorities. and this also allows openly populist policies in order to reproduce political power. That is. with some exceptions. also the press and many other elites went at great lengths to emphasize that his anti-Islam and anti-immigration stance should not be seen as forms of racism. to be „racist‟ – if that means to be against immigration and „spoiling‟ immigrants. the dominant mass media in Europe have failed to energetically oppose the increasing forms of racism and xenophobia in European politics and public opinion. Finally. and support the politicians who have given the bad example in the first place. Indeed. in the Eurobarometer studies. I shall do so by giving a brief summary of the results of various major projects carried out over the last 20 years about the way immigrants. as soon as xenophobia becomes the generalized commonsense.immigration or anti-Islam sentiments in the country. refugees and in general non-European peoples are 14 . On the contrary. as was the case for political phenomenon Fortuyn in the Netherlands. it should no longer be called „racism‟. vote for parties that explicitly oppose or limit immigration. as something „we‟ agree with. Elite Discourse and Racism It is against this theoretical. Indeed. and not only on the right. methodological and political background that we now must deal with some of the properties of elite discourse and racism in the major institutions of Europe.

drugs and 15 . storytelling. 2005).portrayed. disclaimers (“I am not a racist. lay-out. lexical items. see Van Dijk. (ii) to inquire into the sociocognitive foundations (prejudice. 1993. shared nature of the underlying social representations about the Others. hyperboles. argumentation. and (iii) to study the social and political functions of such discourse in society. and crime. 1987. metaphors. problems of reception and cultural integration. and as reproduced especially by the mass media: <!--[if !supportLists]-->a. news reports. due to the general. but…”). <!--[endif]-->Parliamentary debates. and many other properties of discourse. euphemisms. also racist discourse is characterized by an overall strategy of positive selfpresentation and negative other-presentation at all levels of text and talk. textbooks and everyday storytelling about the Others tend to be limited to a small number of stereotypical topics: illegal immigration. <!--[if !supportLists]-->b. ideology) of such discourse. textbooks and everyday communication (for details. Although each of the discourse genres and contexts studied of course shows its own characteristics. especially in political discourse. 1984. <!--[endif]-->Following a general pattern of all ideological discourse. This polarization between Us and Them and the various ways positive or negative opinions are discursively enhanced may be witnessed in the choice of topics. The aims of these projects were threefold: (i) to examine the structures of talk and text about the Others. news. 1991. pictures. there are also notable similarities.

). <!--[if !supportLists]-->d. Arguments and fallacies are formulated as if keeping Them out is in fact better for Them – because in this way They can contribute to the construction of their own 16 . this time in terms of nationalist glorification (about the „long tradition of hospitality for refugees‟. and increasingly about further restrictions on immigration. <!--[if !supportLists]-->e. <!--[endif]-->Ethnic minorities have virtually no access to. <!--[endif]-->Similarly. again. the initial debates are nearly always about problems of „illegal‟ immigration. <!--[endif]-->Part of the overall strategy of positive self-presentation is the routine denial or mitigation of racism. if not as a threat for „Our‟ welfare state. but subtle ways the newcomers are negatively presented as a problem. norms and values. a financial burden. discourses about Them or about ethnic affairs in general are not explicitly also directed at them: They tend to be ignored as potential recipients of public text and talk. or control over the discourses about them. etc. <!--[if !supportLists]-->c. generally spoken and written by „white‟ elites. These general characteristics of racist discourse may be further specified for the respective genres of public discourse of the institutions: Parliament and politics Thus. the job market or western culture. Deviance and Threat. the combination of positive selfpresentation. especially among the elites.deviance. in parliamentary debates. and the systematic. Overall the portrayal of the Others emphasizes their Difference. Typical of such debates is.

policies and all other political talk and text today. can be received closer to home „in their own culture‟ and – most cynical of all fallacies – can be spared the rampant racism – in the popular neighborhoods . where immigration was later than in North Western Europe.g. but fair‟. and the „ethnic wars‟ in Bosnia. permits and related red tape and bureaucracy. the Holocaust. On the contrary. e. and so on. whereas in most countries there is an ongoing debate on problems of cultural integration. or to discipline Them once they are already inside. 17 .country. Political programs. Indeed. to the hassles of papers. the main topic in the institutions is the problems allegedly caused by the immigrants. Kosovo. In sum. and unlike terrorism racism is never declared one of the major problems of the country or of Europe – despite the long devastating history and the killing fields of colonialism. instead of bogus refugees.in Our country. it is rarely the case that such contributions are recognized and emphasized in parliamentary debates or the propaganda speeches of the politicians. And for those countries. In the UK the focus is on what the Right and the tabloids call „bogus refugees‟. seldom do parliamentary debates deal with racism. these are always presented as „firm. they know that being „soft‟ on immigration costs votes among a population that has for decades been brainwashed by political and media discourse to believe that immigration and immigrants are basically bad news. Whatever the increasing restrictions on immigration and civil and legal rights. And although for all countries of the EU (also illegal) immigration has always brought a significant economic bonus. by teaching them that they not only have rights but also duties. from the many forms of discrimination. the pervasive if not persuasive argument is that immigration must be restricted because this is what the European Union requires. throughout Europe are thus replete with alarming warnings and tough plans to keep Them outside of Fortress Europe. such as Italy and Spain. and hardly ever the innumerable problems experienced by the immigrants and caused by Us.

even if only for some time – until the mainstream parties understood the propaganda potential of such scare tactics and essentially propagated the same (for other studies on racism in politics and political discourse. So much so. terrorism became the number 1 topic anywhere. Austria and the Netherlands. 2002. 1995. In countries where the right-wing tabloid popular press is powerful. Austria and Italy. Germany. 1983. through its usual symbiosis with national and party politics filling much of its pages.This general trend in political discourse has reached hysterical heights after the terrorist attacks of September 11. And vice versa. the topics preoccupying the politicians in parliamentary debates are very much also those making headlines in the news. this means that national politics also is premised on the panic reports of the press. Whatever the occasional European distance taken with respect to Bush & Co in the USA. Ebel. 18 . e. That is. obviously. such as the UK. & Fiala. Goldberg. 1993. Denmark. 1983. see. evidence from the analysis of parliamentary debates shows that politicians. not only read the papers. and soon Islam and immigration in general. Van Dijk. Reeves. especially as to the war in Iraq.. such as the Netherlands. that in some countries. but also use them as „evidence‟ in their debates about immigration and minorities. with minor variations as also reflected between center-left and extreme right in politics – the real left being virtually eliminated in Europe (except in such poor countries as Portugal). Denmark. racist politicians and political parties were able to gain a massive following and even entered government coalitions.g. Wodak & Van Dijk. The Press The press. closely related to fundamentalist Islamism. Solomos & Back. essentially followed suit. 2000).

and less sympathetic--understanding of ethnic events. This is hardly surprising when further data show that newsrooms. And that the selected white (often male) journalists have less -. Smitherman-Donaldson & Van Dijk. Jäger & Link. let alone as editors. We have observed in field work that press releases of minority organizations. And even if they do. Ruhrmann. police officer. discrimination already begins at the stage where not even newsgathering and news writing has begun: in the hiring process. and less access to ethnic communities and spokespersons further explains why already in news gathering and news writing the ethnic perspectives of the Others are hardly prevalent in the news. Minority groups. scholars. ethnic diversity is hardly a prominent value in hiring. 1987. 1995. and hence cited. generally have less access. This means that for a variety of often fallacious reasons. they are much less and much less credibly cited. and so on. „white‟ commentary. 2000. especially among those who usually claim to be most cosmopolitan: journalists. the press is not their lapdog. even before the news is printed. by definition suspected to be biased (where white people are being seen as „objective‟). we find that newsgathering is systematically geared towards the prevalent access of „white‟ elites for the definition of the „ethnic situation‟. Whatever the ethnic event. often end up in the wastepaper basket. minority journalists seldom get a job at a prominent newspaper. Among the elites. That is. it is the (white) politician. are generally white. professor or other „expert‟ that is being searched. Ter Wal. First of all. 1993. interviewed. thus biasing any story by one-sided. 19 . especially at the top. organizations and spokespersons. 2001. It plays its own powerful role in the reproduction of racism. 1974. 2002. 1991).Despite its dependence on politicians. also because of their generalized lack of fancy press or public relations departments and specialists. Hartmann & Husband. Cottle. as is shown by many analyses in many countries (Chávez. mayor. Van Dijk.

because journalists seldom read something negative about themselves in the newspaper. Rather. Their contributions to the economy – hardly a secret – seldom reach the headlines. 20 . in many studies in many countries. There is never news on racism in the press. As may be inferred from the context of news gathering. If racism is dealt with at all. this tends to happen for the „official‟ racism of the extreme right (such as Le Pen in France or Haider in Austria). also other properties of news are stacked against immigrants. media discourse in most EU countries primarily focuses on new arrivals and illegal entry. work and leisure of minorities is rare. that topic selection and other features of news are at least stereotypical. minorities are portrayed in few. sometimes even exclusively.U. As we have seen for political discourse. News about the everyday lives. and sometimes more or less subtly racist.The news on ethnic affairs in the press is conditioned by this context of discrimination and exclusion. and if they are cited they are never cited alone. In sum. and seldom the racisms of the mainstream. news about them is gathered from dominant group sources. they are little cited. Besides these general topics. stereotypical and often negative roles. Germany. Problems experienced by immigrants receives hardly any attention. especially in the UK. because journalism is not known to be the most self-critical profession – not surprisingly. and on crime and deviance. It is not surprising to find. on reception and integration problems of immigrants. Denmark and Austria. as may be expected. news about the Others is limited to a handful of topics – where other people may be covered under a large number of different topics. In other words. the E. depending on the newspaper – probably the most blatantly racist being the tabloids. press in general does not define the ethnic situation in terms of the ethnic participants themselves. First of all.

1980. Textbook analysis shows that similar conclusions should be drawn for the portrayal of non-European minorities and of non-European countries and peoples in general. Of course. history and the (other) social sciences. including the dominant ideologies of the time (Apple. which more or less subtly feature the usual stereotypes. Van Dijk. 1985. Moroccans). 1987b). The others briefly repeated each other by emphasizing the cultural differences instead of the similarities between Us (Dutch) and Them (Turks. such as the Moluccans. Blondin. Preiswerk. 1993. few are the textbooks in Europe that detail the horrors and the exploitation of slavery and colonialism. prejudices and omissions from a Eurocentric perspective (see. 1990. and such lines in that case would not fail to recall that some younger ones once engaged in terrorist acts.. while largely ignoring the SurinameseDutch population. for instance. and of stereotypes and prejudices in particular. Klein. Thus. to whom no different „culture‟ could be ascribed.Textbooks Besides the political and media institutions. Sometimes a few lines would suffice for an entire ethnic community. Troyna. even more relevantly. Thus. half of Dutch social science textbooks of the mid-1980s did not even acknowledge the presence of hundreds of thousands of minorities in the country – and. within such a general strategy of positive self- 21 . e. in geography. This has always been true for the representation of the world and its people.g. Textbooks are defined by their „official knowledge‟. Textbooks are also known for their national or even nationalist biases. the institutions of the domain of education are the primary agents of the reproduction of social representations in general. in the classroom. in which the glory days and deeds of the country are magnified and its crimes and misdeeds are mitigated or even totally „forgotten‟.

education and research are the few domains in society in which alternative views. they are dictatorships. lexicon. discrimination or even racism – but never in terms of overall systems of ethnic domination pervasive in all domains and at all levels of society. and so on. the dominant ideologies of society are faithfully represented in the textbooks. Besides the simplistic stereotypes about a rich North and a poor South (ignoring poverty in the North and riches in many parts of the South. At the same time. Also under the pressure of the presence of a growing number of „foreign‟ students in the classrooms of many European cities. also the ethnic ones. In this sense. 1987b). we of course are generous by „helping‟ them. and a few (still mitigated) references to colonialism. The omissions are sometimes more significant than the stereotypes. that we are developed and they are underdeveloped. There are now usually a few pages on immigrants and minorities. that we are peaceful and they are violent. that whereas we are democratic. examples. Australia. photographs and other discourse features. Also many other studies of textbooks in Europe and the European dominated former colonies (the Americas. assignments. as well as huge differences among the countries of the South). Thus. a modest multiculturalism has 22 . maps. policies and principles still have some space. to the many forms of everyday Dutch racism against minorities (Van Dijk. we may read about their poverty. that we are modern and they are backward. if at all. that we live in houses. and they in huts. In the last decade some of this desolate state of textbooks has been improved upon. we thus may conclude from topics. not much space is dedicated. New Zealand) have shown that such representation of minorities in the metropolis is quite similar to the portrayal of non-European peoples and countries internationally. Despite this overall situation. but seldom get even a mitigated account of the causes of their poverty and our riches.presentation and negative other-presentation. and least of all among the elites.

even when the extreme right no longer is a fringe of a few percent today. In other words. Given the racist (and sexist) nature of much science until at least the Second World War. the general tendency has been one of denial and rejection. More seriously. they also represent watered-down versions of earlier science. Confronted with critical analysis of racist structures and strategies in their dominant text and talk in all symbolic domains of society (politics. pre-war era has become exceptional and relegated to the extreme-right. we first of all would like to emphasize the prominent role of the elites in the reproduction of institutional racism. shows that also the academic study of ethnic relations is not free of biases. True.increasingly been celebrated. law. An analysis of sociology textbooks in the USA and the UK in the early 1990s. racism is (again) becoming salonfähig. Textbooks not only reproduce dominant ideologies. stereotypes and serious omissions. although usually only in theory. Conclusions From this brief survey of some forms of elite discourse and institutional racism in Europe. it is not surprising that also contemporary school textbooks were hardly less prejudiced when writing about. in educational laws. and even a „commonsense‟ reaction to the „invasion‟ of non-European Others. media. say. etc. also in the perception of many citizens. most seriously when (not) dealing with racism. these extremist ideas – for which again Others could be blamed – increasingly and hardly in more 23 . for that matter. written by prominent contemporary scholars such as Anthony Giddens. Africans or Asians – or about women. the blatant and explicit racism of another. curricula and textbooks. education.). science.

The rest of the press is hardly explicitly racist. minorities and refugees as a threat to the welfare state. while favoring the elite white definitions of the ethnic situation. Rightwing parties. Research shows that the media generally follow suit. but many of its policies and reporting hardly contribute to multicultural society either: hiring of minority journalists is blatantly discriminatory. or initiate and emphasize such tendencies. and not only on the Right. both in the USA and elsewhere. are thus able to garner popular support that may involve more than 20% of the population.mitigated terms were also increasingly adopted by the mainstream parties in many European countries. biases. We have seen that in all symbolic domains of society. African or American Others. This historical dimension of the continuity of a racist discourse combines with a contemporary social political dimension defining racism in terms of ethnic domination implemented and reproduced by daily discrimination and racist ideologies. especially in the tabloid and in general the rightwing popular press. news gathering is dominated by white males and ignores or problematizes ethnic sources and leaders. and against Jews and Roma within Europe itself. and finally. discourse plays a prominent role in the enactment of discrimination and the reproduction of racist stereotypes. and especially also at the top. political and social domination. but continues a long tradition of racist ideas and practices against Asian. analysis of parliamentary debates and other political discourses shows that whereas on the one hand racism is officially rejected. It has also been emphasized that European racism is not caused by the massive immigration and presence of Others. Thus. prejudices and ideologies. western culture and of course our economic. This process has been exacerbated by the terrorist attacks perpetrated by some Islamist fanatics. reporting the multicultural 24 . with increasingly explicitly xenophobic programs and policies. elite discourses increasingly represent immigrants.

Generally. University textbooks may be more detailed and sophisticated. in which „we‟ Europeans (Dutch. the media pay much more attention to the problems attributed to minorities than those experienced by minorities. and especially conclusions about the racism of the press are vehemently rejected. English. With the arrival of many minority students. with minimal information and still frequent stereotypes and prejudices about the ethnic minorities or the countries and continents where they come from. More generally. critical analysis of practices. but hardly give a much better example. and also largely ignore a critical analysis of the pervasive and systematic nature of society in Europe. problems of integration or crime. By focusing 25 . etc. and never to the press itself. When expressed and reproduced in the many elite discourses that dominate in society. from politics and the media to education and research. often preformulated by the social and natural scientists of an earlier generation. for instance in the areas of language teaching and some aspects of the curriculum. As elsewhere among the elites. seldom to the mainstream elites. and the Others are generally inferior. where reported at all. French. minorities and refugees. Although improvements have been made during the last decade. And racism. In sum. is generally attributed to the extreme right. also here we find many traces of a long history of racist and sexist curricula. these many types of elite racism seriously affect the well-being and the civil rights of immigrants. textbook analyses show that teaching the multicultural society is fragmentary at best. such as illegal immigration. elites and institutions in Europe appear to combine official non-racist doctrine and policies with widespread everyday practices of everyday discrimination and ethnicist or racist ideologies.society itself is usually limited to the coverage of a small number of „problem‟ topics.) are superior in all relevant domains. the institutions of the domain of education have played a prominent role in exploring some of the tenets of a multicultural society. Yet. a Eurocentric bias remains dominant.

integration problems. both in Europe and elsewhere. crime. strife and even extermination that defined the 20th century. and the ways these are able to influence the institutions. education. housing. Without such dissent. anti-racist elite discourses and ideologies that support such a society will be able to make it work.on illegal immigration. In the contemporary world. are bound to be repeated again. the labor market. the horrors of ethnic and racial conflict. The future of a peaceful multicultural Europe in the centuries to come depends on such alternative elite discourses. culture and so on. but a pervasive and influential social practice giving rise to concrete forms of ethnic inequality and domination in the everyday lives of minorities. Only consequent. spread or confirm the generalized prejudices and ideologies that in turn give rise to and legitimate everyday discrimination in the domains of immigration. elite discourses are thus able to produce. backwardness. thus. and in general negative properties attributed the Others. 26 . namely by consistent and critical antiracist discourses of dissent (supported) by both majority and ethnic minority groups and scholars. security. There is a major way to oppose such elite racism. Discursive elite racism. there is no alternative for a multicultural and multiethnic society without racism. politics. terrorism. is not just „words‟ or „ideas‟. violence.

& Wieviorka. A reader. (1990). M. Bataille. (Eds. Racisme et xénophobie en Europe: Une comparaison internationale. New York: St. (2001).. & Solomos.). Retreat of scientific racism: Changing concepts of race in Britain and the United States between the world wars. Boxill. T. A. M.. J.REFERENCES Back. R. (Ed. Bulmer. J. Montréal. (1994). Oxford New York: Oxford University Press.. London: Frank Cass. L. Debating diversity: Analysing the discourse of tolerance. Blommaert. Bjørgo. M. London New York: Routledge. E. L'apprentissage du racisme dans les manuels scolaires. Barker. (1992). & Solomos. D. (1998). The African link: British attitudes to the Negro in the era of the Atlantic slave trade. Racist violence in Europe. J. Blondin. (Ed. (2000). 27 . London: Routledge. Paris: Éditions La Découverte. New York: Routledge. (Eds. J. (1978).).). B. P. Barkan. (1999). Oxford (UK) New York: Oxford University Press. Cambridge New York: Cambridge University Press. (1994).Martin's Press. & Verschueren. Researching race and racism. & Solomos. Bulmer. Theories of Race and Racism. Race and racism. (2004). J. 1550-1807. Québec: Editions Agence d'Arc.). J. Racism...

la xénophobie paroles. (2003). Knowledge and Resistance: Black-Women Talk About Racism in the Netherlands and the USA. S.. Barcelona: Argos Vergara. (1983). (1975). Doane & Bonilla-Silva (2003) NOT FOUND Ebel. Feminism & Psychology. CA: California University Press. Urbana. IL: University of Illinois Press. Chávez. C. 1(2). E.. (1991). & Fiala (2002) NOT FOUND Essed. L'invention de racisme: Antiquité et Moyen Age. 28 . (1983). Sous le consensus.). Encyclopedia of race and ethnic studies. C. (2000). Delacampagne. Covering immigration. Paris: Fayard. London New York: Routledge. Ebel.R. (1983). A. P. UK: Open University Press. (1983). Buckingham. The legacy of Malthus. P. The social costs of the new scientific racism. L. Cashmore.Butterwegge. Racismo y occidente. Cottle. L'invention du racisme antiquité et Moyen Age. Köln: Bund-Verlag. Lausanne: Institut de science politique. Delacampagne. L'invention du racisme. Ethnic Minorities and the Media. Rassismus in Europa. Berkeley. Chase. arguments. M. & Jäger. (Ed. Delacampagne. C. S. Delacampagne. Paris: Fayard. C. contextes (1961-1981). (2001). (1993). 201-219. (1983). & Fiala. Popular images and the politics of the nation. C. Paris: Fayard.

Racism. Hargreaves. & Solomos. and politics in contemporary Europe. Entre gitanos y payos: relación de prejuicios y desacuerdos. London: Saqi. Feagin. J. J.. J. current realities. Evens Foundation. Mass. Princeton. New York: Routledge. (Ed. (1999). G.Essed. (2002). Essed. Mass. (Ed. (1991). (2002). Newbury Park: Sage Publications.. ethnicity. N. D.). New York: Berghahn Books. (2002).). T.. and solutions. Oxford: Blackwell. Malden. MA: Polity Press Distributed in the USA by Blackwell Pub. G. 2001 : causes and consequences. M. Le racisme "scientifique": Offensive contre l'égalité sociale.: Princeton University Press. Haghighat. & Leaman. Goldberg. F. 29 . New York: Routledge. manifestations. (Ed. Goldberg. Halliday. (Eds. (2000). Racism a short history. A. September 11. R.T. R. Europe's new racism causes.. & Goldberg. P. (2001). Aldershot: Elgar. (1995). Understanding everyday racism: An interdisciplinary theory. (2001). Fredrickson. Two hours that shook the world. P. T.). Barcelona: Flor del Viento. Garrido. C.. UK Malden. (2002).J. J. (1988). (2002). and future reparations. D. & Batur. Feagin. H. The racial state. Race critical theories text and context.: Blackwell. J. White racism the basics. Paris: L'Harmattan. A Companion to racial and ethnic studies. Racist America: Roots. Goody. D. Cambridge. Islam in Europe. Vera. (2004).. Malden.: Blackwell Publishers. A. P.).

London Boston: Routledge & Kegan Paul. (2002).. Die vierte Gewalt. S. R. S.. P. Klein. L. Mudde. Racism and the Media). (1985). (1993). & Link. J. Boulder: Westview Press. Jäger. Reading into racism: Bias in children's literature and learning materials. & Wodak. (1974a). 30 . (Eds. ('Brandsätze' -Inflammatory Sentences / Firebombs. Januschek. London: Davis-Poynter. Kalpaka. Wien: Passagen Verlag.). C. S. London New York: Routledge. Racism and the mass media. Duisburg: DISS. M. P. (1998). Power and prejudice: The politics and diplomacy of racial discrimination. G. & Husband. Racism in everyday life). Jäger. (1988). F. London: Heinemann. Racist extremism in Central and Eastern Europe. G. Lauren. & Räthzel. Der Spuk ist nicht vorbei völkischnationalistische Ideologeme im öffentlichen Diskurs der Gegenwart. C. N. Hamburg: Argument. Rassismus und Migration in Europa. The great wells of democracy the meaning of race in American life. A. (1992). Rassismus und die Medien.. Duisburg: DISS. Duisburg: DISS. (Ed. (1974). BrandSätze.Hartmann. Poliakov. B. DISS-Studien. (The Fourth Power. Matouschek. Notwendige Massnahmen gegen Fremde? Genese und Formen von rassistischen Diskursen der Differenz. New York: Basic Books. (1995)..). Jäger. (1992). Rassismus im Alltag. The Aryan myth: A history or racist and nationalist ideas in Europe. (2004).. Marable.

M. Reisigl. Smitherman-Donaldson. World Council of Churches. L. A. (Eds. & Wodak. Oxford Malden. Racialized politics: The debate about racism in America. G.). (2001). Reeves. The Handbook of discourse analysis. Sidanius. Discourse and discrimination.).).). & Bobo. & Back. F. Schiffrin.). M. D. Preiswerk. Sears. L.. (Eds. (1995). Detroit. & Wodak. (2001). (1983). MI: Wayne State Solomos.. R. J. T. R. Approaches in critical discourse analysis. and social change. D. & Hamilton. politics. (Ed. (1987). (Eds. (2000). (1974b).. Reflexiones sobre la vida de los gitanos. (Ed. E. G. R. Ruhrmann. Das Bild der Ausländer in der Öffentlichkeit. London New York: Routledge. Opladen: Leske San Román. Geneva: Programme to Combat Racism. Race. & Van Dijk. Reisigl. (1995). Tannen. A theoretical and empirical analysis of xenophobia). MA: Blackwell Publishers. British racial discourse. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. The history of anti-Semitism..Poliakov. A study of British political discourse about race and race-related matters. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Entre la marginación y el racismo. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. ). Eine theoretische und empirische Analyse zur Fremdenfeindlichkeit. The semiotics of racism. O. L. D. Discourse and discrimination rhetorics of racism and antisemitism. (1980)... (2000)... Wien: Passagen. H. (Eds. T. Madrid: Alianza. The Slant of the pen: Racism in children's books. J. (The image of foreigners in the public sphere. (1986). 31 . London: Routledge.

science and pseudo-science. (1984). 1995-2000. (1987b). Elite discourse and racism. W. London: Sage. Van Dijk. New York: St. Van Dijk. De reproduktie van racisme in maatschappijleerboeken (Textbook examples of racism. The reproduction of racism in social science textbooks).. Ter Wal. USA: Sage Publications. 2 vols. Van Dijk. (1983). L. CA. Racism and society. J. CA: Sage Publications. (1991). Discourse and Racism in Spain and Latin America.. (Ed. (2002). (1997). (1987a). New York: Academic Press. J.. Amsterdam Philadelphia: J. T. Amsterdam: Benjamins. Schoolvoorbeelden van racisme.). Discourse Studies. Van Dijk.). A multidisciplinary introduction. Van Dijk. Paris: Author. A. & Back. Martins Press. Communicating racism: Ethnic prejudice in thought and talk. (1983). Newbury Park. A. Van Dijk. T. Inc. (1996). T. A. (1993). van Dijk. T. Strategies of discourse comprehension. Newbury Park. Racism and the Press. An overview of research and examples of good practice in the EU Member States. Racism and cultural diversity in the mass media. Prejudice in discourse: An analysis of ethnic prejudice in cognition and conversation.). T. T. Benjamins Co. (Ed. Vienna: European Monitoring Center on Racism and Xenophobia. Van Dijk. A. Racism. A. A. UNESCO (Ed. Amsterdam: Socialistische Uitgeverij Amsterdam. 32 . T. & Kintsch.Solomos. London: Routledge. A. T. (2005).

Le racisme: Une introduction. (1993). New York: Columbia University Press Wieviorka. Oxford: Berg Part 1.2 33 . J. Paris: La Découverte. Racism and migration in Western Europe.. Klagenfurt. M. J. J. (1998). Wodak. (1994). P.. Wrench. Racism at the Top.Wetherell.. & Mitten. Gruber. M. de Cillia.). Austria: Drava Verlag...). H. Pelikan.). Nowak. R. (Eds. J. R. Frankfurt/Main: Suhrkamp. (Eds. Diskurshistorische Studien zum Nachkriegsantisemitismus ("We are all innocent perpetrators" Discourse historic studies in post war antisemitism). A. (Ed. Racisme et xénophobie en Europe: une comparaison internationale. T. (1992).. Parliamentary Discourses on Ethnic Issues in Six European States. (2000). (1990).. R. Mapping the language of racism: Discourse and the legitimation of exploitation. M. R. & Potter. Wodak. & Van Dijk. "Wir sind alle unschuldige Täter". & Solomos. Paris: la Découverte.. Wieviorka.

&3.55390..943 0 474:2-.3  7:-07  /0.47.4:.4:.943410549.. ! !0. #   9903 #   783/.0:38.94788.F.47.828..    07.041 7.31:79.0$9:/03:2.943 !.:/0%907  8:7889478..334.943.4:780.7.3/90092. F.78.3:.   /   #.70.0789!7088  0.0790   4/.84339073. # 4.4:7808947.0790   0.425.0395075097. 89:/0835489.39802982 7.708.820&303974/:.0 !.82009F3454-003:7450 :30.39802982:8 0.78.7. 09070   !49907    .

25   4/.943 3089073:7450  147/07    !.3 %   /8   #.79       .031:79 :897.908 .3 $9..3 $:7..82.990%45  !.3/27.2039.78. #  '.7.88:083$:7450.   $44248   /8   #.   703.82.4:78084393.'07.7....

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful