Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Sociology
Why do Muslim minorities perceive more societal hostility in European countries with greater multicultural commitments? This paper examines a unique cross-national survey of Muslims in four Western European countries and finds that personal experiences of discrimination and perceptions of societal hostility are more widespread in Britain and France than in Germany and Spain, notwithstanding more multicultural policies and public attitudes in Britain and France. The paper bridges several literatures on immigration and discrimination to account for this puzzle, including social identity theory, which focuses on individual experiences of discrimination; migration studies that focus on the uneven integration of immigrants; and citizenship studies that focus on regimes of incorporation. The paper combines all of these perspectives in proposing that multiculturalism generates expectations of inclusion that make immigrant communities more likely to identify and label discrimination and hostility.