Essays on Immigration, Religion & Assimilation in Western Europe
Drouhot, Lucas Germain
The dissertation investigates the role of religion and religious difference in the process of assimilation between immigrants and native populations in Western Europe. To do so, it asks a set of interrelated research questions: how does cultural difference affect assimilation? How do Muslims immigrant population culturally adapt to the secular context of Western European nation-states? How does upward mobility impact the acculturation patterns and experiences of religious stigma among the rising immigrant elite? Three separate studies provide answers to these questions. The first study is a large, theoretically-driven review of the last decade of immigrant incorporation scholarship in America and Western Europe. Through a comparative lens, it identifies large empirical trends toward assimilation, but also the unique role played by religious and cultural difference in the European context - a role not foreseen in assimilation theory. The second study uses large-scale survey data from France to investigate assimilation between Muslim immigrants and natives in terms of religiosity. Using a unique research design, it uncovers the role of parental socialization and perceived discrimination in shaping a religiosity surplus among Muslims compared to the reference population. The third article, a qualitative analyses of the subjective experience of upwardly mobile immigrants in France, uses thirty-eight in-depth interviews to provide a first empirical look at the rising immigrant elite. It shows that non-Muslim immigrants typically feel they have achieved status and respect in the French community, while Muslim immigrants generally still feel like cultural outsiders despite high levels of socioeconomic attainment.
immigration; Islam; culture; Sociology; Religion; acculturation; assimilation
Cornwell, Benjamin T.; Garip, Filiz; Bischoff, Kendra
Ph. D., Sociology
Doctor of Philosophy
dissertation or thesis