Sociological Investigation of Ethnicity and Minorities
(NATI SocInvest)

This course will examine the nature of ethnicity, inter-ethnic relations, ethnic based social exclusions and discrimination in different context. This is a field that has undergone a growth in significance in both the West and the new democracies. Inter-ethnic relations have an effect on social cohesion, identity building, the stability of states and societies, the prospect for democratic politics, and the respect for fundamental human and minority rights.

We will introduce this topic first shortly by theoretical perspectives considering the nature of nation, nation-state, ethnicity, andminorities themselves. Then, based on different empirical sociological quantitative survey data, we will approach different cases of inter­ethnic relations and ethnic conflicts, the majority­minority relation, and ethnic based discrimination examining its roots and sociological consequences. We will discuss different representations of inter-ethnic conflicts in current Hungary, first and foremost the dilemmas of the social and political integration of the Roma minority, next the Jews and the problem of anti-Semitism, the new challenge of migration, and finally the inter-ethnic relations in the Carpathian basin. The course will focus on both theoretical, analytical, and methodological consideration. The case studies will introduce students, how by survey method ethnicity and inter­ethnic relations can be operationalized and analyzed by sociological means.