Not all the same after all? : superdiversity as a lens for the study of past migrations
Title: Not all the same after all? : superdiversity as a lens for the study of past migrations
Author: DE BOCK, Jozefien
Citation: Ethnic and racial studies, 2015, Vol. 38, No. 4, pp. 583-595
ISSN: 0141-9870; 1466-4356
Due to its claim of contemporary exceptionalism, the notion of superdiversity raises suspicion among historians. However, historians would do well to not dismiss the entire superdiversity debate as more hype that does not concern them. As a multidimensional perspective on diversity, encouraging researchers to examine the interplay of many different factors that condition people's lives and to move beyond an ethno-focal perspective, superdiversity could be of interest to historians as well. This article shows how the notion can help historians debunk some of the homogenizing categories that tend to characterize the representation of past immigrant populations. The paper uses a superdiversity lens to examine migration to the city of Ghent from 1960 to 1980. It is an open invitation to historians to accept the challenges that superdiversity poses and to provide a proper historicization of the concept, thus furthering its theoretical development.
Published online: 03 Dec 2014.
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