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Challenging the Parallel Lives Myth: Race, Sociology, Statistics and Politics - 13 May 2009

BSA Race and Ethnicity Study Group and the British Society for Population Studies

Wednesday 13 May 2009

10.30 to 16.00 at the London School of Economics, Room LG01, New Academic Building, Lincoln's Inn Fields

Challenging the 'Parallel Lives' Myth: Race, Sociology, Statistics and Politics

The BSA Race and Ethnicity Study Group and the BSPS are taking the opportunity of the publication of Sleepwalking to Segregation'? Challenging myths about race and immigration by Nissa Finney and Ludi Simpson (Policy Press 2009) to review recent public debates about 'race', immigration and integration. The idea of communities living 'parallel lives' and of Britain 'sleepwalking to segregation' will be a major focus of the seminar. The occasion will also mark the official launch of Sleepwalking to Segregation.

10.30 Registration and refreshments, and Policy Press book display

11.00 Robert Moore (University of Liverpool) Introduction: 'recurrent themes'

11.20 Ludi Simpson (University of Manchester) 'Sleepwalking to Segregation'? How do claims of white flight, growing segregation and dangerous segregation persist despite evidence to the contrary? What are the consequences?

12.05 Paul Gilroy (LSE) Race Politics and the retreat from rationality. In the age of 'evidence based policy development' why would our leaders choose to set the evidence base
on Parallel Lives aside?

12.35 - 13.45 Lunch (sandwich and drink provided), and book display

13.50 to 14.20 Brief introductions from three speakers who will join the morning speakers for a panel discussion:

Debbie Phillips (Leeds and Oxford Universities) will focus on how questions about community cohesion have become intertwined with a racialised political discourse on urban segregation and integration.

Shamser Sinha (CoConvenor BSA Race and Ethnicity Study Group) argues that multicultural communities are displaying solidarities and resisting racism in ways confounding Trevor Phillips' segregation thesis and its inbuilt reification of cultural, ethnic and racial difference.

Kjartan Sveinsson (Runnymede Trust) will argue that the socioeconomic disadvantage of poor white communities has been cast as an ethnic and cultural problem while larger structural considerations, such as the hierarchical nature of the British class system, are left out of the equation altogether.

14.20 - 16.00 Panel discussion with all speakers, and contributions from the floor

Please note that it is essential to register for this free conference in order to gain admission to the building.

Please register your name and address and affiliation at: http://www.leedsmet.ac.uk/international/lectures/parallellivesmyth.htm

How to get to LSE:

LSE is in central London at Aldwych, WC2A 2AE.

The nearest underground station is Holborn, which is on the Central line or Piccadilly line. See How to get to LSE for further information:

The event takes place in the New Academic Building which can be found in the top left hand corner of this map (PDF)