Document Type

Honors Project


An Honors Thesis Submitted to the International Studies Department at Macalester College, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA Advised by Dr. Ahmed I. Samatar, International Studies April 2008


Modern states and legal structures around the world are pressed by the forces of globalization to accommodate increasingly diverse multicultural populations. Older and more frequently followed models for cultural integration are rooted in theories of assimilation or liberal pluralism. These theories can demand unbalanced changes from either minority communities or the state. Few theories identify the dual process of interdependence necessary for the democratic inclusion of diverse minority communities in Europe. This thesis explores the historical intent and shortcomings of immigration and integration legislation as it relates to ethnic minority communities in Great Britain and the Netherlands, and makes a case for including a balanced interdependence model in the political discussion of multiculturalism. I argue that promoting multicultural interdependence through immigration and integration legislation could preserve both European democratic institutions and the benefits of difference, in much the same way that the European Union has preserved the legacy of the state.



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