New Diversities • Volume 23, No. 1, 2021

Thinking Beyond Boundaries: Researching Ethnoheterogenesis in Contexts of Diversities and Social Change

by Nina Clara Tiesler, Mathias Bös and Deborah Sielert (Leibniz University of Hannover)

1. Introduction

The study of societal change and ethnic relations has been a core pursuit in Sociology and Social Anthropology and often occurs in historical contexts marked by heightened migration (Haas et al. 2020, Massey 2008). This special issue aims to refine the theoretical understanding of social and cultural processes regarding the formation of ethnicities and ethnic diversity (Yancey et al 1976, Bös 2010). The collection explores the context of migrants and migrant descendants, wherein conceptual debates on self-perceptions, modes of belonging, group formation, and collective subjectivities continue to be at the core of theoretical considerations (Cohen 1974, Glazer and Moynihan 1975, Banton 2008). In so doing, the special issue also goes beyond this context: it analyses the genesis and continuously shifting social forms of ethnicities, which is heuristically important in that it can help us clarify processes of social, cultural, and political change in society at large (Bell 1975, Bös 2011, Banton 2011). By conceptualising ethnoheterogeneous affiliation as one of many membership roles, this special issue contributes to the development of a Sociology of Membership.

Social sciences and the humanities have a long tradition of researching the emergence of ethnicities, respectively ethnization and de-ethnization processes. Tackling the question of why ethnicity matters to different degrees, in different ways, and in differing social and historical contexts became a mission for constructivist perspectives, at least since the publication of the landmark volume Ethnic Groups and Boundaries: The Social Organization of Cultural Difference, edited by Frederic Barth in 1969. In contrast to constructivist perspectives, essentialist, substantialist, and most groupism approaches to ethnicity cannot specify the genesis of ethnic framings employing necessary analytical criteria, for example the emergence of ethnicity through institutional frameworks, meaning making, social classifications, power relations, etc. As a normative political category, during the US social movements in the 1960s, “ethnicity” also became the most prominent form of identity politics (Hobsbawm 1996). The challenge of distinguishing between political and analytical discourse is certainly one of the reasons why “ethnicity” has remained a quite unsettled and often ill-defined field of inquiry up to the present day among scholars concerned with categories of collective subjectivities. Namely, it is held that neither “ethnicity” nor “collective identities” are analytical categories, but are the results of a sociogenesis; they are therefore objects of analytical inquiry (Brubaker and Cooper 2000).

Social realities, such as the options and constraints of concerned individuals and groupings who are subject to ethnic framings, are utterly complex. Generally speaking, ethnicity is suitable for re-defining rational processes of societisation (Vergesellschaftung) into processes of communitisation (Vergemeinschaftung, Weber 1968). Societisation refers to patterns of social relationships that are based primarily on rational motivations for action (e.g., an organization), while communitisation refers more strongly to emotions and traditions as the basis for social relationships (e.g., a family). Ethnization often takes place when administrative divisions and structural classifications (clearly, processes of societisation) are interpreted (or re-defined) as processes of communitisation. As a result, when individuals and groupings engage in emancipatory struggles to escape structural constraints, more often than not, they also counter feelings of reification and alienation. These feelings occur when ethnization as an externally ascribed classification to a community or group of some kind does not match their self-perception. In relation to these highly dynamic social situations, many concepts and frameworks in this broad field still appear too limited to grasp the complex and multi-dimensional formative processes that produce ethnicities (or rather: the swing of the pendulum between ethnization, de-ethnization, re-ethnization) and societal change through ethnic diversification. The ways in which concepts such as assimilation, identity, integration, diversity, inclusion, multi-ethnic societies, etc. have historically developed and are employed often represent highly political and normative self-descriptions by civil society, which puts them into danger to become useless as analytical categories of heuristic value (e.g., Schinkel 2018).

This is why this special issue suggests developing a new process category, ethnoheterogenesis (EHG), coined by Tiesler (2017, 2018). It builds on theoretical achievements, such as ethnic boundaries (Barth 1969) and boundary making (Wimmer 2004, Alba 2005), multiethnicity (Pieterse 2007), superdiversity (Vertovec 2007), inter alia, as well as its most direct ancestor – ethnogenesis.

Ethnogenesis originally described constitutive processes of ethnic groups, their possible fissions, de-ethnization, expansion, or new formations over time and space (Singer 1962, Voss 2008). From the mid-1970s onward, in American Sociology, the term ethnogenesis was also employed to convey societal assimilation, integration, and change caused by ethnic diversification (Greeley 1974), such as describing socio-cultural change among both minority and majority groupings and in society at large. Therefore, the concept of EHG is proposed as a starting point to discuss multidimensional models of specific forms of societisation, which involve ethnic framing and affiliations of individuals, groupings, and macro groups (Tiesler 2017a). Rather than reducing such formative processes to linear models, EHG explicitly addresses the dialectic of homogenization and heterogenization in the genesis of ethnicities, as well as the normality of de-ethnization and multiple options (Waters 1990) regarding ethnic affiliation (Tiesler 2018).

In this approach, ethnoheterogenesis (EHG) aligns with many theories of ethnic boundaries (Barth 1969) and ethnic boundary making (Wimmer 2008), especially regarding the dynamic nature and situativity. However, it goes beyond these theories by employing a transnational perspective and by highlighting two simultaneously existing processes of diversification. Firstly, the diversity of such boundaries, and secondly, the heterogenizing power impacting inter- and intra- group dynamics within formative processes that are often solely interpreted as homogeneous (Tiesler 2017a).

The aim of the special issue is to further develop EHG as an analytical category for examining processes of socio-cultural change in complex settings of transnationally constituted societies that can be considered “super-diverse” (Vertovec 2007) and/or “ethnoheterogeneous” (Claussen 2013). In this sense, the concept can be considered part of the analytical toolbox of a broader Sociology of Membership. This special issue tackles the question of how ethnicities emerge and analyses what processes are at work. In so doing, the authors relate their observations, empirical data and analyses, in one way or another, to the concept of EHG.

The empirical material presented by the authors who address EHG in this volume is diverse in terms of both geographical scope and groups of actors. It includes postcolonial immigrant communities in France, both Franco-Maghrebi youth (native born minorities) and recent immigrants from North Africa (new arrivals) (Schiff 2021); Russian speakers in Estonia in the borderland city of Narva (Schäfer 2021); the sanctuary city politics of San Francisco in regard to undocumented migrants (Peeck-Ho 2021), and individuals in Germany who are classified as having a “migration background” [FN: The term „migration background“ is a neologism in German discourses and describes a statistical category invented around twenty years ago. While it tries to include a bigger group of people than the otherwise measured „Ausländer/foreigners“, it is still criticized for referring to inherited citizenship and ancestry, rather than migration experience.] (Canan and Hänig 2021).

The empirical findings of these contributions are in line with manifold studies of migrants and migrant descendants, highlighting that conceptual debates on self-perceptions, modes of belonging, group formations and collective subjectivities continue to be at the core of theoretical considerations aiming to reveal complex settings. While engaging EHG as a new or additional lens, the authors in this volume refer to a number of theoretical works, among them the established-outsider configuration, symbolic boundary making by Lamont and by Wimmer (Schiff 2021), the (politics of) belonging by Yuval Davis (Peeck-Ho 2021, Schäfer 2021), a space-sensitive theorisation of belonging (inter alia) by Youkhana (Schäfer 2021), and hybridity by Bhaba (Canan and Hänig 2021).

These articles underline that, more often than not, ethnic self-perceptions and membership roles among people who have migrated and those who are labelled as minorities are changing over time in a kaleidoscopic manner. These changes are seen across generations and in diverse migration trajectories . The authors’ theoretical analysis of complex settings enrich our own work on the above cited theoretical goals: EHG emphasizes the genesis and changes of ethnic framing and multiplicity of ethnic memberships by focusing on the dialectic of hetero- and homogenization processes. The papers gathered in this special issue speak to the further development of EHG as an analytical category, however some questions still remain open. In what follows, we will briefly introduce these important aspects.

2. The Dialectics of Hetero- and Homogenization

It is generally acknowledged that homogenizing forces shape the formative processes of ethnogenesis and ethnic change, as former socially and/or culturally diverse entities are becoming framed or start perceiving themselves as an allegedly homogeneous collective (Brass 1991). The essence and exploratory analysis of the sum of papers of this special issue suggest that this view is one-dimensional and too linear. The strength of the ethnogenesis concept, as developed to date (see Tiesler 2021, in this volume, for an overview of the conceptual history), is its constructivist (and partly instrumentalist) approach, which highlights the fact that ethnicities are socially constructed and historically contingent. The weakness of the ethnogenesis concept lies in the fact that it cannot grasp the entanglement, the interdependency and simultaneousness, of hetero- and homogenizing forces. At the national level, the logic of the latter becomes particularly visible when cross-border migration is involved. Observed by Max Weber amongst “German-Americans” as early as in the beginning of the 20th century at the occasion of his visit to the USA, it requires the act of emigration to develop a notion of belonging and self-perception in national categories: before migrating to the USA, these Germans understood themselves in regional bonds, rather than as “German nationals”. Only through migration, with the experience of arrival in the USA in the midst of other European immigrants, they were categorized and started perceiving themselves as Germans (Banton 2011).

Now, this homogenizing force of “nationalization” holds true for other cross-border migrants as well. At being perceived as a national minority and trying to develop a common voice in political action or common cultural traditions, internal divisions and diversity need to fade. At the very same time, heterogenization takes place. Firstly, because the act of migration from one country to another usually brings together co-nationals from different regions of the country of departure. The experience of arrival most often is an experience of internal cultural, social, even ethnic diversity amongst a group of nationals, e.g. when people from the South of Germany or Turkey or Portugal etc. meet co-nationals from the North of the same country. In the homogenizing process of “becoming” German, Turkish or Portuguese in the new environment, the concrete societal experience of the new surrounding sets a frame. This is to say, secondly, the specific diasporic context (structural conditions, other minorities and majorities, common and distinct cultural elements, etc.) leads to a heterogenization process at another level that one can observe when considering a transnational perspective: as soon as cross-border migrants communicate with, connect to, or visit the people and places that they had left behind, the country of arrival sets a new category of belonging. While becoming Germans, these migrants in the USA became German-Americans; while becoming Portuguese by migrating to Germany, these became “Luso-Germans” (Portuguese-Germans). When Luso-Germans arrive back in Portugal for holidays, the local population welcome them saying, “here come the Germans” as those who had emigrated e.g. to France are greeted as “the French are coming” (Tiesler 2018). The dialectic of homo- and heterogenization is an ongoing process in the “genesis of ethnicities” that always includes ethnization, de-ethnization, re-ethnization.

3. Multiple Memberships

The articles in this special issue take actors’ perspectives and employ anthropological as well as sociological methods in the field. While acknowledging the importance of the emancipatory struggle of ethnically defined minorities, EHG, however, does not perpetuate the political language of identity politics. The problem of the commonly loose talk of identities is that it neither explains the socio-cultural heterogeneous premises for the homogenizing genesis of ethnicities nor its heterogeneous outcomes. In so doing, it enhances the structuring of allegedly homogenous macro groups along ethnic boundaries – in terms of “cultural”, “national”, “hybrid”, “multiple”, “pan-”, “hyphenated” and so forth “identities”. Instead, and as with a growing number of recent theoretical works (Banton 2011) in the “post-identity era” (Hank, Enrique and Laraña 1994), the literature on identities refers back to sociological and anthropological craft and concepts that were in use before the 1960s, a time when the words “identity” and “ethnicity” took off together for a vast career of semantic broadening in academic discourse. An analytical framework suggests rediscovering and recuperating self-perception, membership, affiliations, ascriptions, ethnic framing, representations, mobilisation, social entities, reflexive ethnization and de-ethnization, collective subjectivity, collective identification, identity-thinking and politics, from the unrecognisable condition into which they melt within the “verbal container” (Claussen 2013) of “identities”. Here, they melt from subjective belief and needs for collective action, with the objective consequence of structuring macro groups in society and re-enforcing social inequalities along ethnically defined boundaries.

As an alternative to the reifying identity-jargon, the EHG concept suggests perceiving individuals and their subjective experiences, preferences and unique webs of group affiliations (Simmel 1992 [1908]) as non-identical with others despite possible common ethnic affiliation and ascriptions to macro groups. Above all, as an analytical framework, EHG considers ethnic membership as one among many membership roles. Who belongs here, and who does not? A Sociology of Membership observes and analyses the developmental contexts, impact and consequences of this question. The answer to the question targets different aspects, frames, modes and conditions of membership and is constantly negotiated by diverse social formations, such as national states, political parties, firms, sport clubs, families, or ethnic groupings. Such negotiations are defined by – and are shaping – power relations. While ethnic claims and identity politics are found among both societal majorities and minorities, the term ethnic group (as well as national group) is commonly used to describe a societal minority. It is not exclusive but indeed essential that a Sociology of Membership acknowledges that minorities in any society, however defined, are not homogenous units. Individuals and group(-ing)s within a minority may differ in their reaction to subordination, type of leadership, ideology, degree of allegiance to their group, to other members or to the larger society, the ultimate goals of the group, etc. Consequently, a minority (and by inference the contextual majority/ies as well) will generally not be a wholly united group – groups and individuals will favour various modes of action in response to majority constraints.

4. The Shifting Salience of Ethnicity

In his Theory of Social Categories, Michael Banton (2011) is on a par with Steve Fenton (2003) and Rogers Brubaker (2006) in his critique of “groupism”. As a starting point, Banton confirms that it has been conventional to conceive of ethnogenesis as a process by which a set of individuals come to think of themselves as a people. For the development of EHG as an analytical framework his following point is of major importance: instead of understanding ethnogenesis as a formative process of “a people […] it would be more accurate to speak of ethnoacclivity and ethnodeclivity as processes by which the significance attributed to ethnic identification rises and declines. From a sociological standpoint it is as important to account for the absence of ethnic identification as for its presence” (Banton 2011, 193). Every person can acknowledge one or more ethnic or national origins. As Steve Fenton (2003, 68) has observed, “the problem … is not the word ‘ethnic’ but the word ‘group’ ”. Brubaker (2006, 8) has similarly criticised “groupism”, by which he means “the tendency to take discrete, bounded groups as basic constituents of social life, chief protagonists of social conflicts and fundamental units of social analysis”. Banton concludes:

The conceptual problem is even greater when the recognition of ethnic origin is generalized by reference to ethnicity as if this were an independent factor that influences the behaviour of humans in many regions of the world. Some of these difficulties may be eased if the focus is moved from the concept of a group to that of a category (Banton 2011, 194).

This confirms what we have already learnt from Singer’s work, the first sociological paper on ethnogenesis, namely to speak of ethnically defined groupings as social entities instead of social categories. The latter does not imply that people are involved in a relationship among themselves, while this is the case for ethnicities understood as social entities, wherein people share i.e. values or a sense of self-recognition (Singer 1962, 420). In other words, “there is only an ethnic group for itself and nothing like an ethnic group in itself” (Bös 2015, 138).

Additional to these insights, there is a different line of sociological inquiry regarding ethnogenesis which can add to the development of our framework. Andrew Greeley (1974), an American sociologist and Roman Catholic priest developed a model that grasps the simultaneousness and interdependency of ethnocultural changes among both migrant populations and the society they are part. His US-based empirical study can be said to develop a two-dimensional model of ethnogenesis. By conceptualising socio-cultural change in society at large as ethnogenesis, Greeley’s model went beyond the analysis of group affiliations but remained under-theorised despite its heuristic potential. As with other models of socio-cultural change, and concepts regarding ethnicities, Greeley’s model does not explicitly address the dialectic of homogenization and heterogenization in the process of ethnogenesis. It is for future research to verify if Ethnoheterogenesis can also be employed as a framework to analyse socio-cultural change in society at large. The notion of “ethnoheterogeneous societies” as coined by Detlev Claussen (2013) points to this potential.

5. The Dynamics of Ethnic Group Configurations

Although the term genesis carries the connotation of “birth” or “creation”, ethnogenesis tended to be used to describe what was later called “ethnic change” or “ethnic osmosis” (Barth 1969). In introducing the ethnogenesis of African-Americans as starting ab initio (unlike all other inquiries up until that date in which ethnogenesis was used to conceptualize the transformation of some ethnic groups into other ethnic groups), Singer’s contribution added decisively to the works of his time because traditional perspectives had nearly exclusively focused on the survival and transformation of European-derived “ethnic cultures” in the USA. It was later argued – e.g. by Fredrik Barth (1969) and Anthony Greeley (1974) – that the process whereby ethnic groups come into being had been largely ignored. Similarly, as criticized by Pierre van den Berge (1967) as well as William Yancey et al. (1976), the emphasis on culture as an explanatory variable had tended to obscure the contribution of structural conditions to the emergence and persistence of ethnicity. During the same period, several scholars (e.g., Cohen 1969, Doornbos 1972, Hechter 1974, and slightly later Taylor 1979) suggested that while ethnicity may involve cultural referents, its development and persistence would depend on certain structural conditions. This is to say, the expectation that class or functional cleavages should become predominant over ascriptive solidarities in modern society seemed to be unjustified in view of the persistence of these structural factors (Mayhew 1968, Bell 1975).

Here, the awareness and need to differentiate between social category and social entity, as stressed by Singer, is at the core. Still, Singer’s expanded sequence appears too linear to grasp the formative process of either hyphenated or pan-ethnic conceptions of ethnic membership. This supports the argument that differing processes described as ethnogenesis can be conceptualized as Ethnoheterogenesis (EHG) as our concept highlights the dialectic of hetero- and homogenization at work. However, the selected relevant sociological works introduced here underline, again, that in order to elucidate the formative process of ethnically defined social entities we need to consider the interplay between sociocultural characteristics and social structure, as well as intergroup relations in specific settings of power. Especially, in regards to questions of power and domination the papers gathered in this issue add important empirical insights for an analysis under the category of EHG.

Furthermore, there are a few relevant alternative concepts applicable to or enhancing ethnogenesis and ethnic change, namely ethnic osmosis (Barth 1969), ethno(re)genesis, ethnocultural drift and ethnic strategizing (Thomson 2011). The question is whether or not EHG might serve as an umbrella category for these concepts. This question remains open and should be on the agenda of future work in developing EHG as an analytical category.

6. The Futile Search for Stability

The conceptual history of the term ethnogenesis provides an essential part of the theoretical framework for the endeavour to further develop EHG as an analytical category. As mentioned above, it is no coincidence that our conceptual considerations and theorizing is oriented by “traditional”, critical, sociological and anthropological craft. “Traditional” in this context means before the identity-jargon became established.

There is indeed a complement to the instrumentalist, constructivist and other perspectives on ethnicity. Matching our purpose, a significant parallel line of argument addresses the nature of ethnic situations rather than the nature of “ethnic identity”. Essential to all of these perspectives is the insight that ethnicity, as a phenomenon, is fundamentally an attribute of pluralistic situations, especially “the asymmetric incorporation of structurally dissimilar groupings into a single political economy” (Comaroff 1987:307, cp. also Thomson 2011). As the subtitle of Barth’s 1969 landmark volume states, we are considering “the social organization of cultural differences.”

While the linear and one-dimensional nature of most models of ethnogenesis is one source of motivation to conceptualise EHG as an alternative, another source is the analytical shortcomings and reification of subjective experience when group formations and affiliations are tautologically explained by the use of the cover-all and obliterating “identity”-category. It is essential that the preparatory work toward a new analytical framework in this special issue, and that EHG should open up ways to resist what Eric Hobsbawm (1996) and others have called “identity-jargon”. The insights of the papers presented in this special issue underline the hypothesis that ethnicity can neither be seen as a form of collective subjectivity nor as an unchangeable part of one’s self but rather as one of many membership roles that individuals take up and are ascribed within specific situations and broader membership constellations.

As we have argued so far, the main potential of the concept of EHG for the study of ethnic and social change is that it takes into account the dialectical dynamics of diversification from a transnational perspective; there is no homogenization without heterogenization and vice versa, as they entail each other. This also holds true for inter- and intra-group settings where no one necessarily crossed borders, but where borders wandered across populations, as Jašina Schäfer showcases in her study on Russian speakers in Estonia: —a former majority, and still majority in numbers in the town, but now a national minority in Estonia (in the borderland city of Narva). Schäfer’s space-sensitive approach (Youkhana 2015) allows for overcoming many difficulties associated with groupism or static attitudes towards people’s self-perception, in her case Russian-minority, Russian, Estonian, Post-Soviet, European. It allows her to describe a highly dynamic and complex setting of numerous interconnections. The homogenizing force in the ethnoheterogeneous city of Narva are the politics of the Estonian nation state and its de-Sovietization campaign, but also the Estonian majority society, that constructs the Russian speakers as seemingly homogeneous „freaks“ and excludes them (Schäfer 2021: 10). But, as the author demonstrates, “with each separation” (homogenizing force), “comes also a new connection, leading to heterogeneous ways…” (Schäfer 2021:11). “Being Russian” becomes highly ethnoheterogeneous: attached and detached from Russia, attached and detached from memories of the Soviet past, etc. By moving between multiple ethnoheterogeneous memberships, Russian speakers expose the limits of the homogenizing national state politics that feeds their otherness. Moving across multiple and ethnoheterogenerous memberships is also the (subversive) strategy of resistance against ethnic or racialized categorizations in combination with homogenization amongst those Germans “with a migration background” studied by Coskun Canan and Albrecht Hänig (2021, in this volume). Exemplified by the analysis of a rap song (in which the lyrics incorporate German, English, French, Italien, Turkish, Kurdish, Zaza, and Arab language), Canan and Hänig develop the concept of “hybrid-ethnic-cultural-stylizations”. It stands for the act of switching between different social-cultural contexts, in which individuals with a migration background deal with attributed and socially constructed ethnic membership roles. The example of the rapper shows how self-heterogenization and the use of multiple ethnically labelled memberships serve as a subversion against homogenizing ascriptions. Collectivization and individualization take place in the processes of both homo- and heterogenization.

The paper by Catharina Peeck-Ho presents an analysis of a poster series that reflects on the status of San Francisco as a sanctuary city for undocumented migrants, campaigned by the Arts Commission. These posters show a common fate of the diverse migrants portrayed in the current political and social situation, namely the negotiation of Americanness as a manifestation of political projects of belonging, a form of belonging that navigates the “ideal of homogenization” is hard to overlook. Still, in the construction of otherness, internal differentiation is visible as well. On the one side, the posters are tending to homogenize the portrayed people (as subjects of a politics of the sanctuary city). On the other, the individual narratives bring heterogeneity to the forefront (Peeck-Ho 2021, in this volume).

Claire Schiff sheds light on the relevance of the simultaneousness and interplay between hetero- and homogenization. She employs a transnational perspective in her study on postcolonial immigrant communities in France. In her analysis of debates between Franco-Maghrebi youth (who were born in France) and recent immigrants from North Africa in online discussion forums, the established-outsider-configuration by Elias and Scotson (alongside symbolic boundary making) provides theoretical orientation. Schiff underlines the internal heterogeneity of both groupings and thus the limitation of the established-outsider-configuration that considers each grouping as rather homogenous, as an analytical tool.

7. Conclusion

The established concepts with regard to the formative processes of ethnicities do not explicitly address the dialectic of homogenization and heterogenization inherent in ethnogenesis and ethnic change. We have proposed the concept of Ethnoheterogenesis (EHG) as an alternative model with which to analyse ethnic framing and affiliations of individuals, groupings and macro groups, and the authors of this special issue have taken up the challenge to relate their own research to this model. The conceptual history of ethnogenesis, identity- and groupism-critique and Sociology of Membership define the theoretical basis of our work, which suggests that EHG has the potential to become a useful framework for future investigations. Potentially, EHG can further develop a) as an umbrella category for ongoing formative processes of ethnogenesis and ethnic change, including ethnocultural drifts and ethnic strategizing, and b) to grasp the process of socio-cultural change in societies marked by migration which we describe as ethnoheterogeneous. This special issue assembles an intriguing range of papers that show the heuristic value of the concept of Ethnoheterogenesis and we trust that reading these papers will be as enlightening for the reader as it was for us.

Note on the Authors

Mathias Bös is Professor for Sociological Theory at the Institute of Sociology, Leibniz University Hanover. His field of research is social and cultural change in in Europe and North America, especially citizenship, migration, race and ethnic relations as well as the history of ideas.

Nina Clara Tiesler holds a PhD in Comparative Study of Religion and a venia legendi in Sociology and Cultural Anthropology. She is Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Sociology, Leibniz University of Hanover, and Affiliated Researcher at the Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon. Her main fields of research are migration, ethnicity, socio-cultural change and social theory.

Deborah Sielert is a PhD-student and junior researcher based at the Institute of Sociology, Leibniz University Hanover. Her PhD is a comparative study of symbolic boundary-making and ethnically marked processes of heritagization in three small cities in Northern Germany. Her research interests include: social theories, cultural sociology and critical heritage studies, as well as feminist theories and gender studies, especially in the discursive field around the notion of “care”.


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New Diversities • Volume 23, No. 1, 2021
Thinking Beyond Boundaries: Researching Ethnoheterogenesis in Contexts of Diversities and Social Change
Guest Editors: Nina Clara Tiesler, Mathias Bös and Deborah Sielert (Leibniz University of Hannover)