This chapter argues that the portrayals of groups and individuals known or identified as ‘Gypsies’ in nineteenth- and twentieth-century European historical discourses provide little meaningful insight into the identities, histories, cultures, and lifestyles of such a population. Instead, particularly by examining the British situation, it is shown that they constitute a montage or a scrapbook of exposures of the ideology that produces (and reproduces) them. The chapter explains how such images and discourses emerged and continue to be reproduced. It also argues that historical and contemporary representations are part of a much wider political process of introducing repressive legislation to neutralize the supposed disruptive ‘threat’ of ‘Gypsies’ (in their many varied forms) to particular state interests.
|Title of host publication||The Role of the Romanies|
|Subtitle of host publication||Images and Counter-Images of Gypsies/Romanies in European Cultures|
|Editors||Nicholas Saul , Susan Tebbutt|
|Place of Publication||Liverpool|
|Publisher||Liverpool University Press|
|Number of pages||21|
|Publication status||Published - 2004|