Book Review: Social Work in a Multi-Racial Society
Abstract100 Race & Class Social Work in a Multi-racial Society By PETER ELY and DAVID DENNEY (Aldershot, Gower Press, 1987) 231 pp. 24 Social work, much maligned and attacked by both left and right, has become a rather timid and conservative profession, lagging behind in whatever the current fad in research or concern may be. But what it lacks in responsiveness it makes up in the sheer quantity of policy docu- ments and reports once it feels the coast is clear. Consequently, over re- cent months, there has been a constant stream of documents all trying to include the ethnic or (if they feel political) race dimension, each regurgitating the ideas of its predecessors. These mainly centre on the need to make social work more sensitive to the different cultural needs and cultural preferences of black communities. Superficially, Social Work in a Multi-racial Society seemed quite promising with its intro- ductory chapters on race and ethnicity, the post-war development of immigration controls, and an analysis of race relations legislation and discrimination. Unfortunately, the reader is soon disappointed with the uncritical reproduction of much of the literature already available.