During the last decade, European countries have declared a 'crisis' of multiculturalism. This crisis has gained significant political traction, despite the empirical absence of a failed experiment with multiculturalism. This introduction focuses on the narrative of multicultural backlash, which purports that 'parallel societies' and 'intolerable subjects' and practices have been allowed to flourish within European societies. Beyond particular contexts, the problem of intolerable subjects is seen as a shared European challenge, requiring disintegrated migrants and Muslim populations to display loyalty, adopt 'our' values, and prove the legitimacy of their belonging. This introduction critiques multicultural backlash, less as a rejection of piecemeal multicultural policies than as a denial of lived multiculture. This is developed through an examination of racism in a post-racial era, and by analysing the ways in which integrationist projects further embed culturalist ontology.