Abstract The social and economic integration of the Turkish minority into German
society reﬂects a systemic problem to which policy makers have not yet found a
response. Marginalized by the larger society and separated by cultural and religious
life styles, a signiﬁcant proportion of the Turkish minority is becoming part of a
‘‘parallel society’’ reinforced by discrimination, restricted educational achievements,
and a low socioeconomic status.
Keywords Integration Æ Turkish minority Æ Parallel society Æ Discrimination Æ
Education Æ Immigration
Germany has a long tradition of relying on foreign labor, commencing with Polish
farm hands working on East Prussian estates in the late 19th century.
coal and steel industry could not have been built early in the last century had
workers, who had migrated from Poland and Italy, decided not to stay in Germany.
Between 1910 and 1920 there were about 1.2 million immigrant workers in Germany
and they constituted about two percent of the population. The expansion of the
Third Reich and the occupation and exploitation of most of Europe was made
possible by a large foreign labor force that in August of 1944 reached about one third
of the German labor force (Martin, 1998, p. 7).
Department of Sociology, Hunter College, City University of New York, New York, NY, USA
C. Mueller (&)
420 E. 64th Street, Apt. W2H, New York, NY 10021, USA
Note Max Weber’s opposition to German farm hands being displaced by Polish migrant labors,
prompted by Weber’s nationalistic fear of U
berfremdung, the domination of German culture by the
‘‘inferior’’ Polish one. Inaugural Lecture at the University of Freiburg, 1895.
Popul Res Policy Rev (2006) 25:419–441
Integrating Turkish communities: a German dilemma
Received: 11 March 2005 / Accepted: 24 April 2006 /
Published online: 6 March 2007
Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007