Policy Press

Social cohesion and counter-terrorism

A policy contradiction?

By Charles Husband and Yunis Alam


Feb 10, 2011

Page count

272 pages




234 x 156 mm


Policy Press
Social cohesion and counter-terrorism

Post 9/11, the imposition of policies of counter-terrorism has seen the erosion of support for fundamental human rights. Simultaneously, Muslim communities in European cities have become a focus for state and local policy, leading to a fixation with policies of social cohesion.

This book offers a unique research-based contribution to the debate around community cohesion and counter-terrorism policies in Britain. Through privileged access to the senior management and staff of five metropolitan authorities it reveals the contradictions between these policies as they are implemented in tandem at the local level.

A robust critique of contemporary policy, this book is for all academics, policy makers and practitioners concerned with the management of ethnic diversity.

"This book is highly recommended for students and scholars of urban studies and related disciplines." Urban Studies Journal

"Inclusion or exclusion? Engagement or isolation? Contributors to the social whole or threats to the moral order? In this far reaching study of Cohesion and Prevent, two poles of British public policy that have effectively supplanted multiculturalism, Husband and Alam explore British Muslims, social and economic power, and the contemporary meaning of the 'social'. As human rights are sacrificed and economic and social rights disintegrate, social disorder may well be amplified by exactly those policies ostensibly designed to suppress it. A powerful and insightful analysis with global implications." Andrew Jakubowicz, Professor Sociology, University of Technology, Sydney

"Is a cohesive society always a good one? This extraordinary book points to the alarming way 'community cohesion' intiatives elide assimilation and integration, and are implicated in the stripping of the human rights of the 'enemy next door' and in the scrutiny of Muslim communities. An essential read for anyone who wants to understand multicultural life in Britain." Les Back, Professor of Sociology, Goldsmiths, University of London

"Husband and Alam's study provides an insightful, impassioned and devestating critique of community cohesion and counter-terrorism policy in the UK and sets out the urgent need for radical new directions. Essential reading." John Flint, Sheffield Hallam University

Charles Husband is a fellow at the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies, the University of Helsinki, Finland, and Professor of Social Analysis at the University of Bradford, UK. He has a long history of research on ethnic relations, bringing a distinctive interdisciplinary perspective to his work.

Yunis Alam is a lecturer and researcher at the University of Bradford. His research includes projects dealing with mass media, ethnicity, identity and social cohesion.

Introduction; Community Cohesion: its development and limitations; The prevention of violent extremism; Anti-Muslimism; The experience of managing Community Cohesion and Prevent; Conclusion.