Imagined Liberation

Xenophobia, Citizenship, and Identity in South Africa, Germany, and Canada

Heribert Adam and Kogila Moodley
Book Cover

PB: $35.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-1190-7
Publication: Jul 15

HC: $90.50
EAN: 978-1-4399-1189-1
Publication: Jul 15

Ebook: $35.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-1191-4
Publication: Jul 15

250 pages
6 x 9

A comparative examination of hostility towards migrants around the world

Read the Introduction (pdf).


On a spectrum of hostility towards migrants, South Africa ranks at the top, Germany in the middle and Canada at the bottom. South African xenophobic violence by impoverished slum dwellers is directed against fellow Africans. “Foreign” Africans are blamed for a high crime rate and most other maladies of an imagined liberation. Why would a society that liberated itself in the name of human rights turn against people who escaped human rights violations or unlivable conditions at home? What happened to the expected African solidarity? Why do former victims become victimizers? With porous borders, South Africa is incapable of upholding the blurred distinction between endangered refugees and economic migrants. Imagined Liberation asks what xenophobic societies can learn from other immigrant societies, such as Canada, that avoided the backlash against multiculturalism in Europe. Heribert Adam and Kogila Moodley stress an innovative teaching of political literacy that makes citizens aware as to why they hate.

Table of Contents

Foreword Acknowledgments List of Abbreviations and Acronyms Introduction Part I Integrating Difference 1 Comparative Xenophobia 2 South African Perspectives on Xenophobia 3 Youth Voices Aim and Methodology 670; An Ethnography of Township Schools 670; How Students View Foreigners 4 Falling from Grace Shifting Views on “Mandelaland” 670; Reflections on Mandela 670; Patriarchy, Sexual Violence, and HIV/AIDS 670; Crime and Punishment 670; Corruption and Consumption 670; Reracialization, Affirmative Action, and Black Economic Empowerment 670; Descent into Zimbabwe? 670; Popular Sentiment versus a Liberal Constitution Part II Variations of Migration Policies: Africa, Germany, and Canada 5 Settler Colonialism Two Types of Colonialism 670; Founding Myths and Intergroup Attitudes 670; Metropolitan/Settler Relations 6 Xenophobia in Germany The Case of Roma/Sinti 670; Muslims as Enemies 670; Capitalist versus Communist Xenophobia 670; Conclusion 7 Multicultural Canada as an Alternative? Canadian Identities and Cultural Traditions 670; How to Select Immigrants 670; Opportunistic Multiculturalism Part III Political Literacy 8 Xenophobia and Political Literacy Comparing Political Education in Multiethnic Societies 670; Political Literacy as Strategy to Combat Xenophobia 670; Nation, Nationalism, Ethnicity, Ethnocentrism, and Critical Patriotism 670; Cosmopolitan Consciousness 9 Theorizing Xenophobia Conclusion: Alternatives and Global Trends Appendices Autobiography I: Navigating “Difference”: Insiders, Outsiders, and Contending Identities (Kogila Moodley) Autobiography II: Controversies: Peacemaking in Divided Societies (Heribert Adam) References Index of Names

About the Author(s)

Heribert Adam is Emeritus Professor of Sociology at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver. Educated at the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory, he has published extensively on comparative ethnic conflicts and peacemaking, particularly socio-political developments in South Africa. He was awarded the 1998 Konrad Adenauer Prize of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. He is the co-author of Seeking Mandela: Peacemaking Between Israelis and Palestinians (Temple).

Kogila Moodley is Professor Emerita, Educational Studies at the University of British Columbia, where she was the first holder of the David Lam Chair. Raised in the Indian community of apartheid South Africa, her research is focused on critical multiculturalism, anti-racism education and citizenship. She has served as President of the International Sociological Association’s Research Committee on Racism, Nationalism, and Ethnic Relations. She is the co-author of Seeking Mandela.


In the Series

  • Politics, History, and Social Change edited by John C. Torpey

    This series will disseminate serious works that analyze the social changes that have transformed our world during the twentieth century and beyond. The main topics to be addressed include international migration; human rights; the political uses of history; the past and future of the nation-state; decolonization and the legacy of imperialism; and global inequality. The series will also translate into English outstanding works by scholars writing in other languages.