The Last Acceptable Form of Racism

Aidan McGarry


Identifies the origins of Romaphobia, and points to meaningful ways to promote the inclusion of Roma in society.
Demonised by the media and persecuted for hundreds of years Roma communities are among the most persecuted groups in Europe. Based on real accounts of the struggles faced by Roma communities this well researched and informative book argues that little has been done to identify the root causes of anti-Roma discrimination.

McGarry shows that the origins of this discrimination are to be found in the early history of the European nation state, and the ways in which the Roma, as landless 'nomads', have been excluded from national communities founded upon a notion of 'belonging' to a particular territory.

McGarry argues that understanding Romaphobia as a prejudice rooted in European notions of 'territoriality' allows us to unpick the relationship between identity and belonging, and shows the way towards the inclusion of Roma in society, providing vital insights for other marginalised communities across the world.

Author Bio

Aiden McGarry is a senior lecturer in politics at the University of Brighton, and the recipient of the 'Rising Star' Award 2014, for academic excellence. He is the author of Who Speaks for Roma? (2010) and co-editor of The Politics and Discourses of Migration in Europe (2013) and The Identity Dilemma (2015). His research has been published in leading journals such as Ethnicities, Ethnic and Migration Studies, Ethnopolitics, Social Movement Studies, and Critical Social Policy, among others.

Table of Contents

  • 1. Romaphobia: marginalization and stigmatization in Europe
  • 2. Strangers within the gates: territoriality and belonging
  • 3. Roma identities: how Romaphobia distorts Roma identity
  • 4. An expression of Romaphobia: socio-spatial segregation in Eastern Europe
  • 5. Opre Roma! Challenging Romaphobia through Pride protests
  • 6. Roma citizenship in the European Union: a question of belonging
  • Conclusion. Understanding the causes of Romaphobia: between territoriality, identity and belonging


'McGarry provides a valuable service in directing our attention to the forces that produce this kind of discrimination.'
Times Literary Supplement

‘A beautifully written text... destined to become a benchmark for a new generation of critical scholars.’
Colin Clark, author of Here to Stay: the Gypsies and Travellers of Britain

‘McGarry provides the first extensive scholarly exploration of Romaphobia and vividly outlines the magnitude of the challenge to overcome stereotypes deeply embedded in European culture.'
Martin Kovats, former Special Adviser on Roma issues to the European Commission

‘An eloquent account of one of the most troubling forms of racism still haunting the world.’
Katharine Quarmby, author of No Place to Call Home: Inside the Real Lives of Gypsies and Travellers

‘The strength of McGarry’s book lies in the exploration of a broader, transnational research agenda that seeks to awake Romani studies from its “splendid isolation”, leaving one with the desire to learn more about the roots of Romaphobia.’
Lilla Farkas, Migration Policy Group

‘Essential reading for all concerned about racism and the rise of far right politics.’
Imogen Tyler, author of Revolting Subjects: Social Abjection and Resistance in Neoliberal Britain

‘A thoughtful and accessible inquiry into this persistent form of racism, and a powerful critique of how it continues to be tolerated in present-day Europe.’
Huub van Baar, author of The European Roma

‘Contributes to our understanding of the root causes of inequality between Roma and non-Roma.’
Iulius Rostas, Central European University

‘A timely analysis of how fear and loathing stultifies social progress. McGarry offers an excellent examination of the mechanisms of this enduring and despicable form of racism.’
Annabel Tremlett, University of Portsmouth

'Enlightened, sensitively written and always positive, this book makes a valuable contribution.'
The Morning Star


Publication Date: 15 February 2017
304 pages

Product ISBNs: Paperback: 9781783603992
Hardback: 9781783604005
eBook ePub: 9781783604029
eBook PDF: 9781783604012
eBook Kindle: 9781783604036

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