We need your support to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can continue to hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Islamophobia - Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 2:52 pm on 14th January 2019.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of The Archbishop of York The Archbishop of York Bishop 2:52 pm, 14th January 2019

My Lords, on the overall question of definitions, sometimes it is much easier to do things when we handle them as concepts. In the Stephen Lawrence inquiry, we struggled with the question of racism, particularly when it is found in institutions, so we ended up saying: “The concept that we apply to this case of institutional racism is this”. That is much easier than a definition because a definition can restrict what you want to say. Is it not better to learn from what the Stephen Lawrence inquiry did? We in that inquiry also struggled with the question of homophobic incidents in many other places. In the end, we adopted the word “concept” as opposed to a definition, because a definition is always contingent on who speaks and who does what. May I advise that it might be worth while visiting the way in which the Stephen Lawrence inquiry handled the question of institutional racism?