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» For many centuries migration processes have had an important influence on European societies. Discourses on identity, belonging and parti­cipation of cultural minorities are central to the under­standing, and possibly the future, of modern nation-states. In Germany this debate has been a particularly long one, and it is only now that the country is trying to come to terms with having become a land of immigration. Will that country also need dedicated television channels catering for immigrant populations? A first proposal of that kind was sketched by public-service broadcasters in early 2004: the "Integration Channel".
Oliver Zöllner:
Zugehörigkeit und Teilhabe von Migranten in der Mediengesellschaft:
Neue Fernsehkanäle und die alte Aufgabe Integration

Published in:
Theorien der Kommunikations- und Medienwissenschaft: Grundlegende Diskussionen, Forschungsfelder und Theorieentwicklungen,
ed. by Carsten Winter et al.
Wiesbaden: VS-Verlag, 2008: 291-309.
ISBN 978-3-531-15114-4.


Drawing on recent debates on how to deal with immigration and integration in Germany, this article reviews various theoretical concepts linked to this sometimes ambiguous debate. Multifarious new tasks are identified that need to be addressed by society and its various functional arenas, among them the political, economic, cultural and media subsystems. In this context old foundations of the classic nation-state seem to be increasingly obsolete and might get partly replaced by new forms of citizenship and belonging, processes in which media will play an important role. An "Integration Channel" which had been proposed by key figures of Germany's powerful public-service broadcasting system in early 2004 has as yet not materialized, but has sparked some vivid debates. In the long run Germany may develop new narratives of national identity that will make possible the negotiation of multiple or even flexible loyalties, through the media and otherwise.

English abstract copyright © 2008 Oliver Zöllner.

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