Accepting prejudice and valuing freedom : young Muslims and everyday multiculturalism in Hong Kong
Journal of Intercultural Studies
Multiculturalism, Everyday Multiculturalism, Hong Kong, Muslim Youth, Everyday Racism
This paper shows how the experiences of young Muslims in Hong Kong reveal an alternative account of multiculturalism to that which is often portrayed in works about young Muslims in the West. It presents the everyday multicultural experiences of young people as an important resource to understand the lived experience of ethnic and religious diversity. This discussion is framed by the experiences of a multiethnic sample of young Muslims in Hong Kong. Their experiences demonstrate a pragmatic negotiation of cultural difference and a disinterested acceptance of popular racism. These attitudes are argued as being an adaptation to the popular racism pervasive in Hong Kong culture. Despite the racism they experience, the young Muslims argue that they are safe and very free in the territory, a matter that influences the perception of the racism they encounter. The fact that Islam is not perceived as a threat in Hong Kong society provides an alternative understanding of young Muslims as minorities in the post 9/11 era. It is argued in conclusion that understanding what young Muslims value about life in Hong Kong enables us to recognise alternative representations of multiculturalism and to consider how a variety of different dynamics influence the everyday lives of religious and ethnic minorities as citizens in multicultural societies.
Copyright © 2010 Taylor & Francis
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O'Connor, P. (2010). Accepting prejudice and valuing freedom: Young Muslims and everyday multiculturalism in Hong Kong. Journal of Intercultural Studies, 31(5), 525-539. doi: 10.1080/07256868.2010.513085