När slutar invandrarna vandra? : Integrationsfrågan i statlig, kommunal och skolpolitisk diskurs 1967–2000

Sammanfattning: During the last three decades of the 20th century Swedish immigrant policy went through a profound change. In the late 1960s immigrant policy were based on assimilation but during the 1970’s and 1980’s this policy was exchanged to multicultural guidelines. These multicultural guidelines were however abandoned in the late 1990s when integration became a key word in the debate about immigrants.  This thesis investigates how these changes were made possible by a shifting understanding of immigrants in state and local discourse (the last represented by Malmö municipality) by operationalizing Carol Lee Bacchis What’s the problem represented to be analysis.  Previous research has shown that the social category of immigrants during the first six decades of the 20th century understood immigrants as a threat towards the Swedish race and later the welfare state. From this perspective immigrant policy can be seen as the result of the creation of a problematized immigrant subject, a tendency that is also the case for later decades. The investigation shows that immigrants in the early 1970’s were mainly understood from a class and welfare perspective. During this period immigrants were seen as a threat towards the social cohesion of the welfare state as well as the social democratic ambitions of a raised standard of living for the working class. This understanding led to the development of a multicultural policy where immigrant culture was supported within state and local politics and by structural changes in the education system, aiming to include the category in civic life and improve their living conditions.  In the years between 1976 and 1985 the understanding of immigrants however changed. During this period immigrants became increasingly problematized for their lack of employment and a cultural difference. During the end of this period the multicultural policy changed from an emphasis on culture as a resource for social inclusion to that some parts of of a Swedish identity were not subject of choice. Furthermore, this period also lead to increased efforts at the individual level, were the policy aimed to give individual immigrants increased chances at the labor market. During the last fifteen years the 20th century immigrant policy became increasingly politicized, and immigrants became understood as radically culturally different from swedes. In this period immigrant culture were constructed as oppressive towards women and outdated when compared to the modern Swedish culture. Furthermore, the notion of immigrants as unemployed from previous decades continued to play an important part and immigrants were also conceived as living segregated. This view resulted in the creation of integration policies aiming to not handle immigrants as a from the general population different group. Instead, immigrants should become integrated in Swedish society through the general welfare with an emphasis that not all parts of a Swedish identity were choose able.The result of the investigation show that European culture became increasingly normative in the development of Swedish migrant policy, thus excluding European immigrants from the problematized immigrant subject. Thereby the globalization of migration towards Sweden led to a development were immigrant policy shifted focus from class to cultural perspectives. 

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