Welcome to the Celtic Tiger

Racism, immigration and the state

in The end of Irish history?

This chapter examines the current hegemonic construction of Ireland as an open, cosmopolitan, multicultural, tourist friendly society. The hegemonic sense of Irish identity established during the 1920s and 1930s has been severely challenged by the rise of the Celtic Tiger. The chapter maps the 'dark side' of contemporary Irish society by examining briefly the experiences of racism of two groups within the field of migration, namely asylum seekers and non-nationals with work permits. The legal and administrative categories of 'asylum seeker', 'refugee' and 'economic migrant' are important in that they confer different rights and entitlements. The two central pieces of legislation which currently shape Irish immigration policy are the 1996 Refugee Act and the Immigration Bill of 1999. Through legislation and social policy, most European states attempt to define and sanction acceptable types of social behaviour and activity.

The end of Irish history?

Critical reflections on the Celtic Tiger

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