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One Nation Under a Groove? Identity and Multiculturalism in Britain

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  • Andreas Georgiadis
  • Alan Manning

Abstract

There is a lot of evidence that identity matters for behavior. There is a widespread belief that societies will function better if they manage to establish a common sense of identity among the population. And there are also contemporary fears that this common identity is threatened in several countries. In this paper we investigate the correlates of various measures of identity in the UK, a country currently greatly concerned about a perceived failure to build a common identity from a collection of diverse cultures. We find that the alleged failure to establish a British identity among ethnic minorities is exaggerated - for most their ethnicity and religion seem no barrier to a British identity. But there is a segment of the white population that clearly feels neglected and alienated, and are hostile to the multicultural agenda.

Suggested Citation

  • Andreas Georgiadis & Alan Manning, 2009. "One Nation Under a Groove? Identity and Multiculturalism in Britain," CEP Discussion Papers dp0944, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp0944
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Constant, Amelie F. & Gataullina, Liliya & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2009. "Ethnosizing immigrants," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 274-287, March.
    2. Alessandra Fogli & Raquel Fernandez, 2009. "Culture: An Empirical Investigation of Beliefs, Work, and Fertility," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 146-177, January.
    3. Bénédicte Vidaillet & V. D'Estaintot & P. Abécassis, 2005. "Introduction," Post-Print hal-00287137, HAL.
    4. Oriol Aspachs-Bracons & Irma Clots-Figueras & Joan Costa-Font & Paolo Masella, 2008. "Compulsory Language Educational Policies and Identity Formation," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(2-3), pages 434-444, 04-05.
    5. Georgiadis, Andreas & Manning, Alan, 2009. "Theory of values," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 28613, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    6. Angrist, Joshua & Chin, Aimee & Godoy, Ricardo, 2008. "Is Spanish-only schooling responsible for the Puerto Rican language gap?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1-2), pages 105-128, February.
    7. repec:cup:apsrev:v:103:y:2009:i:02:p:147-174_09 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. David Austen-Smith & Roland G. Fryer, 2005. "An Economic Analysis of "Acting White"," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(2), pages 551-583.
    9. Alan Manning & Sanchari Roy, 2007. "Culture Clash or Culture Club? The Identity and Attitudes of Immigrants in Britain," CEP Discussion Papers dp0790, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    10. William Easterly & Ross Levine, 1997. "Africa's Growth Tragedy: Policies and Ethnic Divisions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1203-1250.
    11. David Austen-Smith & Ronald G. Fryer, 2005. "An Economic Analysis of 'Acting White'," Discussion Papers 1399, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
    12. Alberto Bisin & Eleonora Patacchini & Thierry Verdier & Yves Zenou, 2008. "Are Muslim Immigrants Different in Terms of Cultural Integration?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(2-3), pages 445-456, 04-05.
    13. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics and Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753.
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    Cited by:

    1. Georgiadis, Andreas & Manning, Alan, 2009. "Theory of values," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 28613, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Identity; Multiculturalism;

    JEL classification:

    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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