Multicultural Horizons: Diversity and the Limits of the Civil Nation

Routledge, 07/03/2008 - 152

The intensity of feeling that multiculturalism invariably ignites is considered in this timely analysis of how the New Britain of the twenty-first century is variously re-imagined as multicultural. Introducing the concept of multicultural intimacies, Anne-Marie Fortier offers a new form of critical engagement with the cultural politics of multiculturalism, one that attends to ideals of mixing, loving thy neighbour and feelings for the nation.

In the first study of its kind, Fortier considers the anxieties, desires, and issues that form representations of multicultural Britain available in the British public domain. She investigates:

  • the significance of gender, sex, generations and kinship, as well as race and ethnicity, in debates about cultural difference
  • the consolidation of religion as a marker of absolute difference
  • moral racism, the criteria for good citizenship and the limits of civility.

This book presents a unique analysis of multiculturalism that draws on insights from critical race studies, feminist and queer studies, postcolonialism and psychoanalysis.

Pride shame and the skin of citizenship 21
the good the bad the uncanny 38
Loving thy neighbour and the politics of interethnic propinquity 66
How does it feel? Feeling states and the limits of the civil nation 87
Notes 106
Bibliography 119
Index 132



Anne-Marie Fortier is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at Lancaster University. Her research interests revolve around critical race studies, critical migration studies, feminist, queer and postcolonial theory. She is the author of Migrant Belongings (2000) and co-editor of Uprootings/Regroundings (2003).