Race, Class and Culture in the Dutch Security Field

Thursday, July 13, 2017
Gilbert Scott Building - Room 132 (University of Glasgow)
Sinan Çankaya , Social Science, VU University Amsterdam
In the dominant Dutch security discourse the marginalized male migrant and their descendants are constructed as a real threat to culture, cohesion, order and safety. Characteristic of the current era is the explicit relationship between crime and culture, a visible fusion between immigration, integration, crime and insecurity. By creating scapegoats of hyper-visible citizens based on racialized and ethnicized differences, and using firm language, journalists, scientists and politicians discursively respond to the harder-sounding societal call for repression and control. The construction of an Other in security discourses is, however, not new. In the 19th and early 20th century class and poverty were dominant differentiations in discourses of alterity, excluding the poor, beggars and homeless people. Yet it is apparent that race and ethnicity have become important in discourses of alterity in addition to class. This paper will reflect on the interrelations between the notions of racism and classism, marginalized and shunned concepts in the Dutch (academic) security field.