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Turkish Berlin

Integration Policy and Urban Space

2013
Author:

Annika Marlen Hinze

Turkish Berlin

A revealing account of how immigrants create, cope with, and change urban neighborhoods

Turkish Berlin reveals how integration has been experienced by second-generation Turkish immigrant women in two neighborhoods in Berlin, Germany. Informed by first-person interviews with public officials and immigrants, Annika Marlen Hinze makes clear that local integration policies—often created by officials who have little or no contact with immigrants—have significant effects on the assimilation of outsiders into a community.

Turkish Berlin goes beyond the broad generalizations in immigrant integration debates by digging into what officials actually mean as they operationalize the term ‘integration’ and how the subjects of the resulting policy, Turkish-origin women in Berlin, understand the treatment they receive. Full of rich ethnographic material, this is a fine book that readers will ponder for a long time.

John Mollenkopf, author of Inheriting the City: The Children of Immigrants Come of Age

The integration of immigrants into a larger society begins at the local level. Turkish Berlin reveals how integration has been experienced by second-generation Turkish immigrant women in two neighborhoods in Berlin, Germany. While the neighborhoods are similar demographically, the lived experience of the residents is surprisingly different.

Informed by first-person interviews with both public officials and immigrants, Annika Marlen Hinze makes clear that local integration policies—often created by officials who have little or no contact with immigrants—have significant effects on the assimilation of outsiders into a community and a society. Focusing on the Turkish neighborhoods of Kreuzberg and Neukölln, Hinze shows how a combination of local policy making and grassroots organizing have contributed to one neighborhood earning a reputation as a hip, multicultural success story and the other as a rougher neighborhood featuring problem schools and high rates of unemployment. Aided by her interviews, she describes how policy makers draw from their imaginations of urban space, immigrants, and integration to develop policies that do not always take social realities into consideration. She offers useful examples of how official policies can actually exacerbate the problems they are trying to help solve and demonstrates that a powerful history of grassroots organizing and resistance can have an equally strong impact on political outcomes.

Employing spatial theory as a tool for understanding the complex processes of integration, Hinze asks two related questions: How do immigrants perceive themselves and their experiences in a new culture? And how are immigrants conceived of by politicians and policy makers? Although her research highlights the German–Turk experience in Berlin, her answers have implications that resonate far beyond the city’s limits.

Turkish Berlin

Annika Marlen Hinze is assistant professor of political science at Fordham University.

Turkish Berlin

Turkish Berlin goes beyond the broad generalizations in immigrant integration debates by digging into what officials actually mean as they operationalize the term ‘integration’ and how the subjects of the resulting policy, Turkish-origin women in Berlin, understand the treatment they receive. Full of rich ethnographic material, this is a fine book that readers will ponder for a long time.

John Mollenkopf, author of Inheriting the City: The Children of Immigrants Come of Age

Turkish Berlin

Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction: Babel Berlin, German Immigrant Capital

1. Integration or Exclusion? Understanding Turkish Immigration in Germany
2. Talk of the Town: Space, Visibility, and the Contestation of German Identity
3. Mein Block: The Neighborhood as a Site of Identity
4. Location as Destiny: Integrating Kreuzberg and Neukölln

Conclusion: Learning from Immigrant Neighborhoods

Appendixes
A. Zeynep’s and Bilge’s Kreuzkölln
B. Berlin Senate
C. The Buschkowsky Administration’s 10-Point Integration Agenda for the District of Neukölln

Notes
Bibliography
Index