Analysis of everyday xenophobia: the case of highly educated Turks with immigrant background in Austria and Germany
Xenophobia and racism are contested. They are distinct but overlapping. This study analyses the relationship and interaction between these two concepts and seeks to unpack the true nature of contemporary xenophobia in Western Europe. It attempts to answer two key questions: 1) What constitutes the conceptual bases for these terms? 2) How do people report on their experiences on these concepts? In addressing these questions, the study deconstructs and analyzes the multi-dimensional concept of xenophobia to arrive at a meaningful operational definition; explicates its overlooked normative framework constitutively shaped in the United Nations; investigates the rising effects of immigration phenomenon, violent acts against immigrant groups, and the political discourse on the level of xenophobia; focuses on the related developments in Germany and Austria by narrating the events relevant to explain the rising xenophobia in these countries; and refers to reliable secondary data regarding xenophobic and racist perceptions, behaviors, and incidents gathered through research conducted under the supervision of international organizations and reports submitted by member states to such organizations. The study also seeks answers to these questions through an analysis of interview data conducted with highly educated Turks with immigrant background in Germany and Austria, which is characterized as the group least likely to experience xenophobia and racism. Research findings reveal that the interviewees experience both xenophobia and racism. The interviewees mostly regard racism and xenophobia as identical and declare that they are exposed to verbal violence.