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The Sociology of Multiculturalism

1. Traditional Concepts of Integration

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In this module, we think about classical approaches to integration and the role of culture in this process. In particular, we focus on: (i) the two main factors on which integration has historically been based in Europe – religion and the nation state; (ii) Émile Durkheim’s work on mechanical solidarity and organic solidarity, and his idea that integration operates through economic difference, or a division of labour, and cultural sameness; (iii) the multiculturalist challenge of integration – how to produce integration in societies where there is cultural difference rather than sameness.


In this course, Professor Tariq Modood (University of Bristol) explores sociological approaches to multiculturalism and integration. In the first module, we think about traditional understandings of integration as being grounded in cultural, religious or national sameness. In the second, we look at how the emergence of multicultural societies, such as modern Britain, challenge these older notions, and consider the nature of cultural difference. In the third and fourth modules, we look at ideas of Britishness, the ways these have changed over time, and how we can construct notions of British national identity which can accommodate cultural diversity.


Tariq Modood is Professor of Sociology, Politics and Public Policy at the University of Bristol. Over the last twenty-five years, he has worked on the theory and politics of racism, racial equality, and multiculturalism and secularism, with special reference to British Asian Muslims. Some of his more recent publications include Multiculturalism: A Civic Idea (2007) and (co-authored with G. Levey) Secularism, Religion and Multicultural Citizenship.

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APA style

Modood, T. (2021, August 23). The Sociology of Multiculturalism - Traditional Concepts of Integration [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Modood, T. "The Sociology of Multiculturalism – Traditional Concepts of Integration." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 23 Aug 2021,

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