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Roma: Europe’s Gypsies

1 June 1992

There are almost six million Roma in Europe today, yet they remain a rejected and harassed minority in almost every country in Eastern and Western Europe. Prejudice on the part of majority populations shows little sign of declining, while government attitudes range from persecution or neglect through to paternalistic interference and ruthless social engineering.

Roma are now organizing across traditional social and political boundaries to protect their unique culture and lifestyle. They are forging links throughout Europe and beyond to defend their way of life and present their case to the world.

‘Roma: Europe’s Gypsies’ vividly outlines the reality of living as a member of a Gypsy community in Europe today. Written by Gratton Puxon of the World Romani Congress, it contains a country-by-country analysis and shows that while improvements have occurred in some areas, they have worsened in others. Unless action is taken now, conditions are likely to deteriorate.

An incisive insight into the situation of a little-known but much-maligned people, this report should be read by politicians, administrators, social workers, teachers and all those who wish to learn more about prejudice and Europe’s Romani communities and their future survival.

Please note that the terminology in the fields of minority rights and indigenous peoples’ rights has changed over time. MRG strives to reflect these changes as well as respect the right to self-identification on the part of minorities and indigenous peoples. At the same time, after over 50 years’ work, we know that our archive is of considerable interest to activists and researchers. Therefore, we make available as much of our back catalogue as possible, while being aware that the language used may not reflect current thinking on these issues.

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Grattan Puxon