Successful collaboration begins with a shared language, hence the need for a glossary. This joint effort of contributors from several teams ensures, on the one hand, terminological and conceptual coherence across not only our theoretical approaches, but also the qualitative case studies and quantitative research conducted in OPPORTUNITIES. On the other hand, our glossary facilitates communication between the academic side of the project and the fieldwork conducted by NGOs, uniting our teams working from Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ghana, Italy, Mauritania, the Netherlands, Portugal, Romania and Senegal.

For more information about the Structure and Objectives of the Glossary, click here...)

Anti-racism is an umbrella term covering a broad range of grassroots initiatives, activist movements, political interventions, and scientific and scholarly endeavors to understand, challenge, and ultimately overcome racism. Accused of promoting censorship by some, antiracism as “a cluster of political tendencies and actions struggling, at minimum, for a meaningfully pluralistic public sphere” (Titley 2020, 60) is really one of the cornerstones of democracy. Anti-racist debates mirror culture-specific and often national contexts and traditions of dealing with race, racial bias, and racism. In addition, national contexts define how racism is related to anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, and xenophobia in general. In Germany, for instance, racial theory is inextricably linked to the memory of pseudo-scientific justifications of genocide and the Shoah. Hence racial categorization is considered somewhat taboo outside right-wing circles, and racial or ethnic distinctions, for instance in racial profiling or policing, are still highly controversial.

In the OPPORTUNITIES project, all forms of racial, ethnic, or religious bias, as well as the political instrumentalization of bias in the name of “woke” racism (McWorther 2021), are considered as obstacles to level telling fields on migration and integration. A strong stance on anti-racism is needed to challenge traditions and practices which are implicitly normalized by labeling them ‘institutional’ or ‘endemic’ racism. In order to level the telling field, a perspective shift is needed in critical race studies, race and ethnicity studies, and anti-racist discourses in media and communication studies which tend to approach race, racism and anti-racism from a systemic perspective, focusing on public debates, political discourse, and media representations. Such research produces narratives on migration, racism, or anti-racism, observing these phenomena from an etic point of view. OPPORTUNITIES advocates narratives which emerge from the emic perspective of those minorities or communities directly concerned by racist or Islamophobic discourses and practices, like refugees, migrants, and members of diasporic communities. From their perspective, the daily exposure to and potential unavoidability of bias, discrimination, aggression, and, ultimately, violence is a source of constant alertness, anxiety, and fear which is often experienced as a more or less subtle form of terror or even terrorism.

⇢ see also Level Telling Field, Racism, Terrorism

References and further reading:

McWorther, John. 2021. Woke Racism: How a New Religion Has Betrayed Black America. New York, NY: Portfolio / Penguin.

Titley, Gavan. 2020. Is Free Speech Racist? Cambridge: Polity Press.

Category: C

Work Package: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8