Race and Racialisations Buried Alive in Welfare State Practices

Publikation: Konferencebidrag uden forlag/tidsskriftAbstraktForskningpeer review


Although dominant narratives would say that race and racialisation is of the past in Europe, if ever existing in the Nordic countries (Keskinen, Skaptadóttir, and Toivanen 2019; Lentin 2014), critical research has pointed out that racialized welfare logics are in play in welfare state practices (Neubeck and Cazenave 2001; Williams 1996; Øland 2019). One could say that modern colonial state practices with clear dividing, racialized and hierarchizing practices have been buried alive and have lived on in universalistic welfare state practices of benevolence and solidarity (Goldberg 2009, Hesse 2007). This workshop invites scholars to think about how we in our research practices make it possible to encounter and identify evaded, silenced and forgotten logics and practices of race, racism and racialization without applying a speculative mode of thought. How do we recognise that colonial histories have lived on and play a role in shaping current social, cultural and political relations, including our most profound knowledge relations? What role does other racial histories and relations play? Are we othering types of racialisation by focussing on coloniality? How can we notice something that is thoroughly and insistently denied, yet effectively at work in racialized people’s lives? If race and racism work in a shape shifting manner (Neubeck and Cazenave 2001) in addition to being denied and evaded, what conceptual and analytical vocabularies could be developed to help us identify and name race and racism? Do we need particular ways of presenting that which is buried alive and haunting in the background of data, e.g., composed stories, fiction and other types of extended creativity within the academy? We encourage papers focusing on conceptual, analytical or methodological concerns in teasing out racial dynamics, complexity and complicity. References Goldberg, David Theo. 2009. The Threat of Race: Reflections on Racial Neoliberalism. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Hesse, Barnor. 2007. “Racialized Modernity: An Analytics of White Mythologies”. Ethnic and Racial Studies 30(4):643–63. Keskinen, Suvi, Unnur Dís Skaptadóttir, and Mari Toivanen. 2019. “Narrations of homogeneity, waning welfare states, and the politics of solidarity”, pp. 1–17 in Undoing homogeneity in the Nordic region: migration, difference and the politics of solidarity, Studies in migration and diaspora, edited by S. Keskinen, Unnur Dís Skaptadóttir, og M. Toivanen. Abingdon, Oxon; New York, NY: Routledge. Lentin, Alana. 2014. “Postracial Silences. The Othering of Race in Europe”, pp. 69–104 in Racism and sociology. Series B, Yearbook, edited by W. D. Hund and A. Lentin. Zürich: Lit. Neubeck, Kenneth J. and Noel A. Cazenave. 2001. Welfare racism: playing the race card against America’s poor. New York: Routledge. Williams, Fiona. 1996. “Racism and the Discipline of Social Policy: a Critique of Welfare Theory”. S. 48–76 i Critical social policy. A reader, edited by D. Taylor. London; Thousand Oaks, Calif: Sage. Øland, Trine. 2019. Welfare Work with Immigrants and Refugees in a Social Democratic Welfare State. Abingdon, Oxon & New York, NY: Routledge.


Konference20th Nordic Migration Research Conference


  • Socialt arbejde og sociale forhold