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Civil Society In The United States: From Pluralism To Multiculturalism And Fragmentation Into Diasporas

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Chapter Summary

Individual achievement on the basis of equal opportunity, cross-cutting membership in social groups, a great plurality of voluntary associations and a comparatively high level of civic self-organization have made up the integrative power of the American type of civil society. Transnationalization, multiculturalism and the flourishing of diasporas are part of a major change of social integration, away from the nation state model of social integration characterized by strong internal integration and weak external integration. The chapter explains the specific inclusion deficits of the American societal community exclusively by structural reasons up to this point of our analysis: fragmented organization of the employees' interests, increased organization of ethnic and gender-related interest groups and an increasing overruling of the discourse on class- and stratum-specific inequality by the discourse about ethnic and gender-related inequality.

Keywords: American societal community; civil society; ethnicization; genderization; multiculturalism; racialization



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