Next Article in Journal
Engineering Women’s Attitudes and Goals in Choosing Disciplines with Above and Below Average Female Representation
Next Article in Special Issue
Suspect Outsiders or Prospective Citizens? Constructing the Immigrant/German Boundary in Germany’s Integration Courses
Previous Article in Journal
Topic Modeling The Red Pill
Previous Article in Special Issue
Social Identity Theory and Public Opinion towards Immigration
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Soc. Sci. 2018, 7(3), 43; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci7030043

The Weight of Categories: Geographically Inscribed Otherness in Botkyrka Municipality, Sweden

Department of Sociology, The City University of New York—the Graduate Center, New York, NY 10016, USA
Received: 22 January 2018 / Revised: 26 February 2018 / Accepted: 9 March 2018 / Published: 12 March 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Politics of Race, Ethnicity and Immigration)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1228 KB, uploaded 12 March 2018]   |  

Abstract

This paper asked a paradoxical question: why have immigrants to Sweden (particularly refugees) become geographically, economically, and symbolically segregated despite the putatively generous provisions of Sweden’s welfare state? I sought to understand how people and institutions perceived and deployed categories that created geographically inscribed “Otherness” through a year-long fieldwork in Botkyrka Municipality of the Greater Stockholm area. My analysis weaved together three models for explaining social segregation: the relational, the symbolic, and the spatial. I then augmented these models by taking into account the legal and bureaucratic frameworks that influence social exclusion, as well as historical factors of geographical exclusion. My study revealed how the Swedish government has, despite repeated attempts to integrate immigrant populations into the national identity, nonetheless continued to demarcate immigrant populations both symbolically and geographically, first through a long history of categorizing immigrants as “non-Swedes” (whether as “foreigner,” “immigrant,” or “people with a foreign background”), and through policies that have inadvertently separated the spaces in which immigrants are able to live. Finally, I concluded that the nation’s ethnocultural and Volk-centered definition of nationhood makes it almost impossible for immigrants to be integrated into the Swedish society and propose a shift of academic interests in three aspects. View Full-Text
Keywords: segregation; nation-state; otherness; immigration; space segregation; nation-state; otherness; immigration; space
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
SciFeed

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Hu, B. The Weight of Categories: Geographically Inscribed Otherness in Botkyrka Municipality, Sweden. Soc. Sci. 2018, 7, 43.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Soc. Sci. EISSN 2076-0760 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top