Thirty years ago, many Europeans saw multiculturalism - the em-brace of an inclusive, diverse society - as an answer to Europe’s social problems. Today, a growing number consider it to be a cause of them.
Twenty years ago, the image of burning copies of Salman Rushdie's "The Satanic Verses" held aloft by thousand-strong mobs of protestors became an internationally familiar symbol of anger and offence. Kenan Malik examines how the Rushdie affair transformed the debate worldwide on multiculturalism, tolerance and free speech, helped fuel the rise of radical Islam and pointed the way to the horrors of 9/11 and 7/7.
"Great book, annoying narration"
Social policies in Belgium, France, and the United Kingdom aimed at fostering integration are all different. What they have in common, though, is that all have helped create a more fractured society, and all have helped entrench narrower visions of belongingness and identity. Neither assimilationist nor multicultural policies have created Islamism or jihadism. What they have done is helped create the space for Islamism to flourish, and to funnel disaffection into jihadism.