Masarykova univerzita Filozofická fakulta Katedra anglistiky a amerikanistiky Magisterská diplomová práce



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Masarykova univerzita

Filozofická fakulta
Katedra anglistiky a amerikanistiky

Magisterská diplomová práce


2008 Jana Rousová


Hřbet



Masaryk University

Faculty of Arts
Department of English
and American Studies

English Language and Literature

Jana Rousová



Race as an Open Social Conflict:

Race Riots in Britain
Master’s Diploma Thesis
Supervisor: Doc. Mgr. Milada Franková, CSc., M.A.
2008

I declare that I have worked on this thesis independently,


using only the primary and secondary sources listed in the bibliography.

……………………………………………..

Author’s signature

Acknowledgement

I would like to thank my supervisor Doc. Mgr. Milada Franková, CSc., M.A. for her kind help and guidance throughout my work.



Table of Contents

I. Introduction 1

II. Race riots in the second half of the 20th century Britain 3

II. 1. Nottingham and Notting Hill 1958–1959 3

II. 1. 1. Responses to the riots 7

Housing, unemployment 7

Immigration 9

II. 1. 2. Conclusion 11

II. 2. Urban unrest in the 1980s 12

II. 2. 1. Immigration and race since the 1970s 12

II. 2. 2. Brixton riots 15

II. 2. 3. Responses to the riots 17

II. 2. 4. Conclusion 20

III. Oldham race riots 22

III. 1. The Oldham Borough 22

III. 2. History 23

III. 3. Geographical distribution 25

III. 4. Causes of the riots 26

III. 5. Course of the riots 27

IV. Debates on the riots 32

Oldham Independent Review 32

Review of Community Cohesion in Oldham 33

IV. 1. Education 34

IV. 1. 1. Pre-16 education 34

Findings and Achievements 34

Recommendations 36

School segregation 38

Language 40

IV. 1. 2. Post-16 education and training 41

IV. 1. 3. Summary of recommendations 42

IV. 2. Housing 43

The Cantle Report 46

IV. 3. Employment and economy 47

IV. 3. 1. Employment 48

IV. 3. 2. Unemployment 49

IV. 3. 3. The Ritchie Report recommendations 49

IV. 3. 4. The Cantle Report findings and recommendations 50

IV. 4. Race and Policing 51

IV. 4. 1. The Ritchie Report analysis of policing 52

IV. 4. 2. The Cantle Report Findings and Recommendations 54

IV. 5. Reflections on the reports 55

V. The Way Forward – Conclusion 60

V.1. Summary of findings and recommendations 60

V. 1. 1. Community Cohesion 60

V. 1. 2. Housing 61

V. 1. 3. Education 62

V. 1. 4. Policing and community attitudes 63

V. 1. 5. Employment 64

V. 1. 6. Conclusion 65

V. 2. The concept of race and racial discrimination 65

Appendix 70

Works Cited 72

I. Introduction


The increasing presence of immigrant communities from different cultural, religious, and racial backgrounds caused that the character of British society has been changing since the second half of the 20th century. Living together of mainstream British culture next to the mosaic of ethnic communities along with other factors contributed to the outbreaks of riots throughout Britain during the 20th century. Their occurrence gave rise to immediate response and provoked considerable political, ideological, and cultural debates. It led to much investigation and academic research on the issue of race and racial discrimination.

The main object of this work is to follow the emergence and course of the riots and to examine debates following the riots in British society. I divide my work into four parts. The first part provides the overview of the main riots since the 1950s. After a brief description of the riots, the work looks in greater detail at the explanation of disorders as well as at the responses and impact of them on many factors in the society.

The second part is devoted to Oldham riots of 2001 which after almost fifteen years of peace came as a surprise in what seemed to be multicultural British society. I pay attention to the history of settlement and geographical distribution of ethnic communities in Oldham providing the data given by the most recent 2001 Census.

The third part analyses debates on the riots and especially two documents – the Ritchie Report issued immediately after the riots and the Cantle Report issued in 2006 to evaluate the improvement in Oldham five years after the riots. Particular emphasis is placed on the issues such as education, housing, employment, economy, and policing. I include the key findings and recommendations of the Ritchie Report and I try to compare it with what was achieved in particular areas during the following five years. I conclude with the further recommendations of the Cantle Report.

The final part draws out some implications of the urban unrest. The aim is to suggest solutions applicable to all the areas affected by the riots, it focuses on problems concerning community cohesion and attitudes, housing, education, employment and policing. The work also pays attention to the questions of ethnic segregation which is visible and permanent in many aspects of life in British society and needs to be dealt with if multicultural society is to be developed. The work also raised the question about the nature of riots, whether they can be considered as racial and whether the concept of race is the source of social conflict. Therefore, the final part also discusses some arguments given by the cultural theoreticians and it offers the recent view of the question of race and racial discrimination.


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