Labelling Migrants: From Migrant Workers to ‘Muslims’

  • Ayhan KayaEmail author
Part of the Identities and Modernities in Europe book series (IME)


This chapter briefly outlines the discursive shifts practised in Western European countries in labelling migrants and their descendants since the early days of migration experiences in the 1960s, namely migrant workers until the 1980s, Turks until the 1990s and Muslims today. This chapter questions the practice of many allegedly secular European states in accommodating Turkish-origin migrants as well as other Muslim-origin migrants and their descendants through the institutionalization of Islam. The main claim of this chapter is that Christian democratic and conservative traditions often contribute to the Islamization/Muslimization of migrant communities and their descendants of Muslim background, undermining democratic and liberal elements that have been generated by young generations of migrant background in everyday life.


Islamization Multiculturalism Islamophobia Individualization Institutionalization 


  1. Allen, Christopher. 2010. Islamophobia. London: Ashgate.Google Scholar
  2. Appadurai, Arjun. 1994. Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy. In Global Culture: Nationalism, Globalisation and Modernity, ed. Mike Featherstone. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  3. Appadurai, Arjun. 1997. Modernity at Large: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  4. Balibar, Étiene. 2004. We, the People of Europe? Reflections on Transnational Citizenship. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  5. Benslama, Fethi. 2009. Psychoanalysis and the Challenge of Islam. Trans. Robert Bononno. Minneapolis, MN: Minnesota University Press.Google Scholar
  6. Benslama, Fethi. 2017. Der Übermuslim: Was junge Menschen zur Radikalisierungtreibt. Berlin: Matthes & Seitz.Google Scholar
  7. Berkovitz, Jay B. 2007. The Napoleonic Sanhedrin: Halachic Foundations and Rabbinical Legacy. CCAR Journal: A Reform Jewish Quarterly 54 (Winter): 11–34.Google Scholar
  8. Brown, Carl L. 2000. Religion and State: The Muslim Approach to Politics. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  9. Brown, Wendy. 2006. Regulating Aversion: Tolerance in the Age of Identity and Empire. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Brubaker, Rogers. 1991. International Migration: A Challenge for Humanity. International Migration Review 25 (4) (Winter): 946–957.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Brubaker, Rogers. 1992. Citizenship and Nationhood in France and Germany. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Buruma, Ian, and Avishai Margalit. 2004. Occidentalism: The West in the Eyes of Its Enemies. New York: The Penguin Press.Google Scholar
  13. Byrnes, Timothy A. 2007. Religion and World Politics: A Structural Approach. AICGS Issue Brief 16 (June).Google Scholar
  14. Cesari, Joselyne. 2003. Muslim Minorities in Europe: The Silent Revolution. In Modernizing Islam: Religion in the Public Sphere in the Middle East and in Europe, ed. J. Esposito and F. Burgat, 251–269. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.Google Scholar
  15. De Certeau, Michael. 1984. The Practice of Everyday Life. Trans. Steven Rendall. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  16. Elias, Norbert. 1998. Civilization, Power and Knowledge: Selected Writings. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  17. Fadil, Nadia. 2005. The Political Mobilization of Muslim Minorities in the West: A Gender (Un)friendly Project? In Encyclopaedia of Women and Islamic Cultures, vol. 2, ed. Joseph Suad, 293–295. Brill: Leiden.Google Scholar
  18. Farris, Sara. 2012. Femonationalism and the ‘Regular’ Army of Labour Called Migrant Women. History of the Present 2 (2): 184–199.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Fetzer, Joel S., and J. Christopher Soper. 2005. Muslims and the State in Britain, France and Germany. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  20. Guattari, Felix. 1995. Chaosmosis: An Ethico—Aesthetic Paradigm. Trans. Paul Bains and Julian Pefanis. Sydney: Power Publications.Google Scholar
  21. Guattari, Felix. 2000. The Three Ecologies. Trans. Ian Pindar and Paul Sutton. London: The Athlone Press.Google Scholar
  22. Halliday, Fred. 1999. Islamophobia Reconsidered. Ethnic and Racial Studies 22 (5) (September): 892–902.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hebdige, Dick. 1988. Hiding in the Light. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Heitmeyer, Wilhelm, Joachim Müller, and Helmut Schröder. 1997. Verlockender Fundamentalismus. Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp Verlag.Google Scholar
  25. Huntington, Samuel. 1996. The Clash of Civilisations and the Remaking of the World Order. New York: Simon and Schuster.Google Scholar
  26. Ingulfsen, Inga. 2016. Why Aren’t European Feminists Arguing Against the Anti-Immigrant Right? Open Democracy (February 18).
  27. Ireland, Patrick R. 2000. Reaping What They Sow: Institutions and Immigrant Political Participation in Western Europe. In Challenging Immigration and Ethnic Relations Politics, ed. Ruud Koopmans and Paul Statham, 233–282. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  28. Kaya, Ayhan. 2001. Constructing Diasporas: Turkish Diasporic Youth in Berlin. Bielefeld: Transcript Verlag.Google Scholar
  29. Kaya, Ayhan. 2011. Institutionalizing and Essentializing Islam in Europe. In Neue Menschen-landschaften: Migration Türkei-Schweiz 1961–2011, Mustafa İdeli, V. Suter Reich, and Hans L. Kieser, 335–358. Zürich: Chronos.Google Scholar
  30. Kaya, Ayhan. 2012a. Islam, Migration and Integration: The Age of Securitization. London: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  31. Kaya, Ayhan. 2012b. Backlash of Multiculturalism and Republicanism in Europe. Philosophy and Social Criticism Journal 38: 399–411.Google Scholar
  32. Kaya Ayhan. 2015. Islamophobism as an Ideology in the West: Scapegoating Muslim-Origin Migrants. In International Handbook of Migration and Social Transformation in Europe, ed. Anna Amelina, Kenneth Horvath, and Bruno Meeus, Chapter 18. Wiesbaden: Springer.Google Scholar
  33. Kaya, Ayhan, and Ayşegül Kayaoğlu. 2017. Islamophobia in the EU 15: A Quantitative Analysis. UluslararasıİlişkilerDergisi 14 (53): 45–68.Google Scholar
  34. Kaya, Ayhan, and Ferhat Kentel. 2005. Euro-Turks: A Bridge or a Breach Between Turkey and the EU. Brussels: CEPS Publications.Google Scholar
  35. Kaya, Ayhan, and Ferhat Kentel. 2008. Belgian-Turks. Brussels: King Baudouin Foundation.Google Scholar
  36. Kepel, Gilles. 2008. Beyond Terror and Martyrdom: The Future of the Middle East. Cambridge: Harvard Belknap Press.Google Scholar
  37. Kepel, Gilles. 2017. Terror in France: The Rise of Jihad in the West. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Koenig, Matthias. 2003. The Public Incorporation of Muslim Migrants in Western Europe—A Comparative Perspective. In Religion and Diversity in International Focus: Research and Policy Issues, Chair Paul Bradamat, John Biles, and Humeyra Ibrahim. 8th International Metropolis Conference, Vienna.Google Scholar
  39. Lipset, Seymour Martin. 1960. Political Man: The Social Bases of Politics. Garden City, NY: Doubleday.Google Scholar
  40. Lipsitz, George. 1994. We Know What Time It Is: Race, Class and Youth Culture in the Nineties. In Microphone Friends: Youth Music and Youth Culture, ed. A. Ross and T. Rose. New York and London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  41. Malik, Maleiha (ed.). 2010. Anti-Muslim Prejudice in the West: Past and Present. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  42. Mandaville, Peter. 2001. Transnational Muslim Politics: Reimagining the Umma. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Martiniello, Marco. 2015. Are Young European Muslim Artists Political Activists? Conference Paper Presented at Integrim ITN Scientific Thematic Workshop, 11 May, Liège, Belgium.
  44. Meer, Nasar, and Tariq Modood. 2012. How Does Interculturalism Contrast with Multiculturalism? Journal of Intercultural Studies 33 (2): 175–196.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Mondon, Aurelien, and Aaron Winter. 2017. Articulations of Islamophobia: From the Extreme to the Mainstream? Ethnic and Racial Studies. Scholar
  46. Nielsen, Jorgen. 1987. Muslims in Britain: Searching for an Identity? New Community 13 (3) (Spring): 384–394.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Nielsen, Jorgen (ed.). 2013. Muslim Political Participation in Europe. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.Google Scholar
  48. Pelinka, Anton. 2013. Right-Wing Populism: Concept and Typology. In Right-Wing Populism in Europe: Politics and Discourse, ed. Ruth Wodak, M. Khosvanirik, and B. Mral, 3–22. London: Bloomsbury.Google Scholar
  49. Pieterse, Jan Nederveen. 1997. Travelling Islam: Mosques Without Minarets. In Space, Culture and Power: New Identities in Globalizing Cities, ed. Ayşe Öncü and Petra Weyland, 177–200. London: Zed Books.Google Scholar
  50. Puar, Jasbir. 2007. Terrorist Assemblages: Homonationalism in Queer Times. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Ramm, Christoph. 2010. The Muslim Makers. Interventions 12 (2): 183–197.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Rath, Jan, et al. 2001. Western Europe and Its Islam. Leiden: Brill.Google Scholar
  53. Renton, James, and Ben Gidley (eds.). 2017. Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia in Europe: A Shared Story? London: Palgrave.Google Scholar
  54. Richardson, Robin. 2012. Countering Intolerance Against Muslims Through Education. Paris: UNESCO. Accessed 8 March 2017.
  55. Roy, Olivier. 2007. Secularism Confronts Islam. Trans. George Holoch. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  56. Roy, Olivier. 2015. What is the Driving Force Behind Jihadist Terrorism? A Scientific Perspective on the Causes/Circumstances of Joining the Scene. Paper Presented at the BKA Autumn Conference, 18–19 November, Mainz.Google Scholar
  57. Roy, Olivier. 2017. Jihad and Death: The Global Appeal of Islamic State. London: Hurst.Google Scholar
  58. Runnymede Trust. 1997. Islamophobia: A Challenge for Us All. London: Runnymede Trust.Google Scholar
  59. Safran, William. 2004. Ethnoreligious Politics in France: Jews and Muslims. West European Politics 27 (3) (May): 423–451.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Schiffauer, Werner. 2006. Enemies within the Gates: The Debate About the Citizenship of Muslims in Germany. In Multiculturalism, Muslims and Citizenship: A European Approach, ed. T. Modood, A. Triandafyllidou, and R. Zapata-Barrero, 94–116. London: Routledge.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of International RelationsIstanbul Bilgi UniversityIstanbulTurkey

Personalised recommendations