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Multiculturalism in the UK or the end of a Utopia?

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  1. Introduction.
  2. Birth of the concept of multiculturalism in the UK.
    1. The historical settlement of multiculturalism.
    2. The necessity to control the immigration.
  3. Recent topical events that reinforce the doubts about the British policy of multiculturalism.
    1. Topical events that have raised questions about the efficiency of British multicultural policies.
    2. Denouncing the effects of multiculturalism on the cohesion of society.
    3. End of multiculturalism or fear of Islam?
  4. Conclusion.
  5. Bibliography.

Have you ever tried to fill in a job application form in the UK? If so, you may have been surprised, as a foreigner, to be asked the colour of your skin (white British, white West European, white East European, black, etc.). In France such a thing has long been unfeasible, even if today, the debate is re-opened between those who think it is a restriction to individual freedom and those who think it makes it easier to fight discrimination. Such a question however does not really seem to bother anyone in the United Kingdom. Far from it. This country has long been proud of its multicultural dimension, fiercely criticizing the assimilation model of France. And yet, looking back at the history of Britain, discrimination has always existed and socioeconomic inequalities have progressively turned into a more cultural or ethnic exclusion.

[...] There is another way to define multiculturalism which could be called diversity, ?where people have their own cultural beliefs and they happily coexist - but there is a common thread of Britishness or whatever you want to call it to hold society together? [1](Ruth Lea, Director of the Centre for Policy Studies, a centre-right think tank). Multiculturalism preaches that, in an age of mass migration, society can (and should) be a kind of salad bowl, a receptacle for wonderful exotic ingredients from around the world, the more the better, each bringing its special flavour to the cultural mix. [...]

[...] The opportunity to vote is granted to all citizens coming from the Commonwealth and living by right on the territory. On the other hand, religious rituals are fully tolerated and respected, and even encouraged by the creation of a Congress for the Muslim festival of Ramadan or the Indian Diwali. In addition, in some quarters of London where the representation of minorities is strong, signs and all official documents are written in English and translated into several other languages (Turkish, Hindi, Arabic, Pujali The Swann Report in 1985[3] recommends ?education for all?. [...]

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