Printer Friendly

Multicultural world and its challenges.

Contrary to predictions of modernization theories since 19th century until recently - that the development of pre-modern into modern industrial societies entails demise of traditional particularistic, especially ethnic, identities--contemporary societies, primarily the most advanced ones, are faced with ethnic revival and other forms of social diversities seeking their public recognition. (1) The general public awareness is growing that contemporary societies become more and not less culturally diverse than they used to be.

It becomes more obvious within this framework that the ethno-cultural factors will play a crucially important role in shaping the social life of these nation-states well into the future.

There are two major ways in which the saliency of ethnicity manifests itself today. (2) First, it does so as a consequence of the mass international migration flows that have transferred huge contingents of people from the less developed nations to the core nations of the capitalist world system. Secondly, it is the result of the resurgence of 'ethnonacionalism' (Connor) among people who define themselves as being members of 'nations without states' (Guibernau).

Clearly, any understanding of cultural diversity or multiculturality depends greatly on the notion of culture employed. There are many different definitions of culture. In the schools still prevail traditional anthropological views on culture as static and unchanging entity. One of the consequences of such perceptions and descriptions is the perpetuation of stereotypes about different ethnic, cultural, religious, and racial groups. There is, however, increasing scientific evidence that cultures are dynamic, complex, and changing. Most social scientists today view culture as consisting primarily of the symbolic, ideational, and intangible aspects of human societies. Even when they include artifacts and material objects as being a part of culture, most social scientists regard culture as the way people interpret, use, and perceive them. It is the values, symbols, interpretations, and perspectives that distinguish one people from another in modernized societies and not artifacts, material objects, and other tangible aspects of human societies. (3)

Generally speaking, liberal and communitarian scholars share an institutional view of culture, whereas postmodernists see it in a relational perspective. According to the first position, we can also say to narrow (or anthropologically thick) notion of culture, leaving here aside the essential differences among their proponents in other respects, stems from the endorsement of "social thesis". Namely, from the belief that individual identity is shaped by and provided through membership of groups, of which cultural groups are perhaps the most important ones. It is for this reason that denial of a culture may hurt individual bearers of that culture. In short, from this perspective a culture is seen as a constituent part of our identities, and therefore it is a real context from which we approach the given opportunities.

For a postmodern relational thinker a group exists and is defined as a specific group only in social and interactive relations to others. Group identity is not a set of objective facts, but the product of experienced meanings. The broad (relational) conception of cultural diversity, in contrast to narrow one, takes into account groups that do not form a societal (institutional) culture. The members of the latter are supposed to share some characteristics that define them as different from members of majority culture(s) with respect to values, lifestyles, and interests. Considered in this view cultural diversity includes not only the relations between members of different societal cultures but also the relations between the subcultures in a given societal culture. More specifically, it pertains also to differences deriving from gender, age, physical and mental ability and sexual orientations.

It is a common understanding now, that phenomena of cultural diversities and group differences are features of almost all but the most insulated political societies. (4) All modern states face the problems of cultural diversities even if they are far from endorsing multiculturalism or interculturalism as a policy agenda of their official ideology. They do so because they encounter the challenging claims to recognition and equality of various minority and deprivilaged communities, trying to preserve and affirm their own identities.

The relevant question is not whether contemporary societies want to be multicultural or not (since it is a fact regardless whether it is being recognized or not) but how to respond to their diversities. Traditional option is cultural homogenization. Today, it would involve forcible assimilation of cultural minorities, various political, economical and technological restrictions, and last but note least--media control. Such a policy, however, could not be legitimate any more in democratic states. Actually, the only acceptable choice for them is to learn how to come to terms and manage with their diverse cultural groups, using at the same time creative potential of theirs.

In his talk to Harvard students 1995 on the theme of global civilization spreading around the world, Vaclav Havel noted the irony that it was accompanied by new forms of resistance and struggle and demands for "the right to worship ... ancient Gods and obey divine injunctions". According to him, a world civilization would not be worthy of its name if it not do justice to the "individuality of different spheres of culture and civilization". The new global civilization had to understand itself "as multicultural and multipolar one". (5)

There is a considerable variation among the advanced (post)industrial nations, both in terms of the level and the source of diversity. What all of them share in common is the recent experience of significant influx of immigrants from the less-developed nations. Yet, new immigrant communities, seen by some researchers as new ethnic minorities, are not equally central point of multicultural or intercultural discourse in these societies. Brett Klopp points out that unlike Garman Multikulturelle Geselschaft, multiculturalism in the United States is only indirectly related to the recent immigration waves of non-European origins. (6) Instead, the primary source of multiculturalism there is America's unresolved race problem--failure in full social integration of the Blacks or Afro-Americans (and the Hispanics in the second place). In Canada and Australia multiculturalism is seen positively as an issue of national identity and equal rights for their increasingly diverse populations. However, these countries differ in their understanding of multiculturalist policies. Canada's multiculturalism law proclaims: "The recognition and strengthening of multiculturalism as an expression of the cultural and ethnic diversity of Canadian society and as confirmation of the freedom of all members of Canadian society to preserve, strengthen, and share their cultural inheritance." On the other hand, the Australian Government's National Agenda policy states that "multiculturalism is not defined in terms of cultural pluralism or minority rights, but in terms of the cultural, social and economic rights of all citizens in a democratic state".

The emergence of multiculturalism and interculturalism is to be explained as a respond to multiculturality of contemporary societies, on the one hand, and as a reaction to centuries long dominance of a worldview that can be denoted as monoculturalism. From ancient Greek philosophy, through Medieval Christianity and liberalism, till our days western thought and worldview have been dominated by moral monism or monocultural understanding of human beings and their societies. (7) A bit simplified moral monism assumes that only one way of life is truly human, and all others are more or less defective in moral human sense. In other words monoculturalists have believed that one or some cultures (their own apparently) are superior to others, and therefore the latter can rightly be suppressed or even destroyed.

When Western European great powers conquered and colonized large parts of other continents, they needed ideological justification for their rule. Social science (in 18th and 19th century), heavily relied on biology, readily responded to the spirit of the time and produced the vision of hierarchy of races and cultures. Of course the Western European white race and culture(s) was imagined on the top and the black race and the African cultures at the bottom of the ostensible (evolutionary) cultural pyramid. Thinking of themselves as a superior race and culture Europeans rationalized and legitimized their imperialism as a historical mission of civilizing the backward races and cultures. This version of moral monism later became known as Eurocentrism--ethnocentrism on the European scale. Eurocentrism is probably best epitomized by literal critic Matthew Arnold (1937) in his famed saying about European cultural achievements "the best that has been said and thought in the world".

It should be emphasized that the critique of Eurocentrism is addressed not to Europeans as individuals but rather to European oppressive cultural hegemony. (8) Nor it implies suggestion that non-European peoples and their cultures are somehow 'better' than Europeans ones. Eurocentrism is a historical and social construction and not a genetic inheritance and therefore Europeans can be (and many of them are) anti-Eurocentric, just as non-Europeans can be Eurocentric, or Afrocentric, for instance.

Finally, with the rise and consolidation of the nation-state as the model of modern society, cultural homogenization within a state, i.e. (forcible) assimilation of minority and deprivileged cultures, became an ideal standard of a national constitution. The assimilationist vision of public education has played an important, if not a key role, in its establishment and maintenance of a monolithic national culture. It was assumed that ethnic and immigrant groups had to forsake their original cultures in order to fully participate in the nation-state. Ethno-cultural diversity was often seen as a threat to political stability, and hence as something to be discouraged by public policies. (9)

Leaving aside their predecessors (starting from 18th century and gaining ground at the time of German romanticism in the form of cultural pluralism and cultural relativism), the initial contemporary ideas of interculturalism and multiculturalism appeared in the 1970s, as a respond to ethnic revival and diversity movements emerged both in the North America and in Europe. Since then very different concepts of society, culture and education have been developed either under umbrella term interculturalism or multiculturalism The first notion is being used in the continental Europe referring primarily to education (for intercultural society), and the latter in the United States, Canada, Australia and Great Britain, covering not only new educational but integral societal theories as well.

Theoreticians and proponents of interculturalism often claim that they have elaborated advanced and only proper intercultural approach to education in contemporary multicultural societies. It is said that the term multicultural describes culturally diverse nature of human society, including not only ethnic or national cultures, but also linguistic, religious and socio-economic diversity. (10) Interculturality, on the other hand, is unlike multiculturality dynamic concept and refers to evolving relations between cultural groups. In that sense, it has been defined as "the existence and equitable interaction of diverse cultures and the possibility of generating shared cultural expressions through dialogue and mutual respect". (11)

It is legitimate to adopt the above meanings of the terms interculturality and multiculturality for the scientific terms are the matter of convention within an academic community or a broader public. However, for the sake of academic correctness, we should have in mind that the term multiculturalism has been used in Anglo-Saxon literature to cover very different multicultural (intercultural) concepts of societies and education. Furthermore, in terms of their theoretical advancement multicultural theories could be favorably compared to the works of interculturalist authors.

Being aware that multiculturalism is often (wrongly) reduced to and understood as pure multicultural society, where different cultures more or less tolerate each other, but do not go into mutual understandings and productive dialog, some outstanding multiculturalists point out that they advocate transformative or critical multiculturalism in opposition to conservative, liberal, or corporative usage of the term. (12) The latter, namely, aim at artificial changes in people's perceptions of diversity, conserving at the same time the existing unequal power relations. McLaren uses also the term resistance multiculturalism that refuses to see culture as nonconflictual, harmonious, and consensual. From this perspective the goal of multiculturalism is not diversity for itself but critical recognition of diversity as prerequisite of social justice. A progressive postmodern multiculturalism requires acceptance of difference and appreciating of others, says D. Kellner. (13) This entails the active education of each person in the history and culture of others, a goal that has been pursued in some universities in recent years through advancing programs of multicultural education which contains a critique of Western civilization courses and the 'Great Books' (Canon) program. Although standard Western civilization courses are valuable in teaching literacy skills and offering an introduction into important figures and texts, they often reinforce elitist values and ignorance of non-white and non-Western cultures. Critical postmodern multiculturalism therefore wants to expand the curricula, to include voices, perspectives, and groups excluded from the main-stream and cannons of 'Western civilization'.

In short, both (critical) interculturalists and multiculturalists generally are in agreement that multiculturality is a factual condition of the most contemporary societies today. The question is how to deal with it, and they offer various answers seeking to similar goal. Interculturalists call it intercultural society (and education). Some multiculturalists stick with the term multicultural society, not only in terms of its socio-demographic structure, but also in a normative sense of a society based on recognition and affirmation of minority and deprivilaged communities. Others rather talk on multicultural citizenship, when they want to emphasize the difference towards orthodox liberal universalistic (monocultural) concept of social justice. Parekh suggests to istinguish between multicultural society that factually includes two or more cultural communities and multiculturalist one. Although, many contemporary societies are more or less multicultural, multiculturalist are only those that positively respond to multicultural reality, seeking to integrate on equal footing all of its (culturally) diverse communities. In other words, multiculturalist theoreticians within discourse of multiculturalism think on normative multiculturalist concepts relating to mutual respects and dialogue rather than on pure multiculturality or parallel coexistence of different cultural groups in a society.

Multicultural societies, in particular liberal democratic ones, inevitably generate their own questions and issues in both political and civil sphere regarding social justice. We may call them either intercultural or multicultural challenges. What follows is mostly based on multiculturalist approach and answers to these challenges.

In social and political theory multiculturalism is a very recent phenomenon. Much of the initial theorizing about the idea came particularly from Canadian and Australian academics, but not before the late 1980s. From the next decade on the most heated debate has been waged in the United States among academics and politicians alike.

For those who begin to study enormous and ever growing literature on multiculturalism (interculturalism) it is important to know that there is no simple, widely shared definition of multiculturalism. Furthermore, multiculturalism is a vague and at the same time fiercely contested term. There are deep both political and theoretical divisions not only between its advocates and critics, but even within the two theoretical and ideological camps. Then, it means quite different things in different societies and debating contexts and is thus overloaded with diverse and sometimes conflicting meanings articulating different political agendas and discourses.

By the end of the eighties the American Right orchestrated its theoretical and political attacks on multiculturalism connected it closely with affirmative action and 'political correctness'. Right critics went so far as to declare 'culture wars' on the university campuses, having understood their fight as a crusade against the left-wing villains who jeopardized the traditional Christian-American freedom and values. The latter were accused for all sorts of evils, including anti-Americanism, relativism, hedonism, and suppression of free speech. The culture war was launched (1987) by the publication of Allan Bloom's book The Closing of the American Mind. He was followed by even less unscrupulous followers like Denish D'Souza, Roger Kimball, Thomas Sowell and Charles Sykes.

Brian Barry with appearance of his book Culture and Equality, An Egalitarian Critique of Multiculturalism immediately has become the most popular and cited liberal critic of multiculturalism. (14) He explicitly claims that multiculturalism is inherently flawed. For him egalitarian liberalism is incompatible with a commitment to cultural protection and group--specific rights and exemption. Furthermore, multiculturalist preoccupation with culture draws attention (academic and political) away from the real sources of unequal treatment and injustice. What minority groups actually seek for are the rights and resources enjoyed by those in positions of dominance and power. Unlike multiculturalists, Barry holds that protection of cultural differences only reinforces the power of traditional cultural elites, while harm in the last instance the depriviledged minority members.

The idea of multiculturalism frequently rests upon an unspoken mixing of what is and what ought to be. In other words, the term is employed both as an analytical concept and as a normative percept (15). Sometimes it is used in a purely descriptive sense, referring to the fact of cultural diversity in a society (to the existence of various minority and deprivileged cultural, religious, linguistic, and even social groups). In a normative sense it relates to an ideology that attaches positive value to different (cultural) groups, calling for their equal recognition in public space. As ideology multiculturalism takes different forms. To simplify a bit, we can distinguish weaker or stronger versions of multiculturalism depending on how much significance is attached to the group identity vis-a-vis national identity, for instance, or how radical the demands for recognition become. Finally, multiculturalism can be used to refer to a set of policies that are designed to help cultural minorities, materially or symbolically.

Anne Philips points out to a paradox that the relevance of multiculturalism "cannot be understood just in terms of an absolute or growing difference ... It reflects a shift in political culture and claims, where people who may be significantly less different than in some point in the past come to assert a stronger sense of themselves and their identities." (16) Groups whose members decades ago fought for their equal political and social integration now claim recognition of their cultural particularity.

Critical and postmodern thinkers emphasize that many differences, relating primarily to gender, class, race, ethnicity, are socially constructed. (17) As social constructions, these forms of difference are not inherently and biologically given, but rather take on historically specific meanings as a result of human action. Feminist scholarship put it in terms of dominance and oppression: "What difference does difference make in power relations?" The collective mobilization around (socially constructed) differences is central to what is varied termed the politics of recognition or the politics of identity/difference.

In the existing literature we can, according to Matteo, distinguish between two main analytical conceptions of the sociological meaning of multiculturalism--narrow and broad one. (18) The narrow conception corresponds to an anthropologically thick view of culture. This idea is well captured by Kymlicka's conept of a 'societal culture', namely, a "culture which provides its members with meaningful ways of life across the full range of human activities, including social, educational, religious, recreational, and economic life, encompassing both public and private spheres. These cultures tend to be territorially concentrated, and based on a shared language". Kymlicka has here in mind his understanding of national minorities as cultural groups of reference of such approach (including Aboriginal peoples or First Nations). Therefore, this view excludes from the multicultural debate all social groups that do not constitute a societal culture

Similar for Parekh multiculturalism is not about difference and identity per se but about those that are embedded in and sustained by culture. (19) The latter means a body of beliefs and practices in terms of which a group of people understand themselves and the world and organize their individual and collective lives. The author suggests that the term diversity should be used in a sense of culturally derived differences, to distinguish them from differences based on individual choices. Multiculturalism, then, is about cultural diversity or culturally embedded differences. Since it is possible to welcome other kinds of differences but not those derived from culture, or vice versa, not all proponents of politics of recognition need be sympathetic to multiculturalism. Politics of recognition includes multiculturalism as its constituent element, but the latter maintains its distinctiveness as a theoretical and political discourse. A multicultural society, then, is one that comprises two or more cultural communities. There are basically two options how to respond to its cultural diversity, each of them with possible variations. It might welcome and respect the cultural demands of its constituent communities, and even make cultural diversity central to its self-understanding; or it might seek to assimilate these communities into its mainstream culture either wholly or substantially. In the first place it is multiculturalist and in the second monoculturalist in its orientation and ethos. The adjective 'multicultural' refers to the fact of cultural diversity, and the noun 'multiculturalism' to a normative response to that fact.

In contrast, the broad conception of multiculturalism takes into account groups that do not form a societal culture but whose members are supposed to share some characteristics that define them as different from members of majority culture(s) with respect to values, lifestyles, and interests. We are dealing here with symbolic elements embodied in social and political institutions, and this is precisely the reason why cultural difference affects the political resources of these individuals. The notion of culture in this approach is defined in a sociological perspective, that is, in a rational and pragmatic way.

The distinction between broad and narrow understandings of multiculturalism entails important methodological and normative consequences. Scholars who adopt a narrow conception of multiculturalism start from the assumption that national culture is morally relevant and hence it should occupy an important place in a liberal conception of democracy. In contrast, scholars relying on a broad understanding of multiculturalism consider national identity just as one identity among others.

For G. Matteo what is relatively new is not multiculturalism in itself, but its salience and visibility as a political problem. (20) In the last century, namely, the capacity of social actors to bring their identities and interests into the public sphere has considerably increased. Although great majority of contemporary societies today are more or less multicultural, the challenges of multiculturalism are faced almost exclusively by the liberal democratic governments. This can be explained by their constitutional commitment to the principle of equality for all their citizens, which legitimizes different (group) requirements for public recognition in the name of equality.

No wonder then most authors engaged in the world debate on multiculturalism consider themselves as liberal political theorists. They are divided now into two camps: proponents and defenders of multiculturalism on the one side and critics and detractors on the other. While first ones argue that the multiculturalist claims can legitimately be reconciled with liberal egalitarian principles (and even strengthen and deepen them), the others in any particular (cultural) group's rights see betrayal of (pure) liberalism, and even retreat to pre-modern social relations. The latter are committed to the idea of equal citizenship, understood to include social and economic rights that are to be enjoyed equally by every member of the relevant political community. (21) The institutions of the welfare state--public education, health care, income support, unemployment insurance, old age pensions, and so forth--are essential to guarantee those rights. Liberal multiculturalists, on the other hand, take into consideration conditions of cultural diversity and commit themselves as well to equal treatment of citizens qua members of cultural groups. As many have argued, this may require multicultural policies that provide protection and support to cultural minorities, whether by granting them exemptions from generally prevailing laws, supplying them with additional resources, or granting them symbolic recognition in the public realm. A tension between these two commitments hardly could be avoided.

Amy Gutmann formulates clearly the starting question for challenging of the universalistic democratic order. (22) Can citizens with diverse (cultural) identities be represented as equals if public institutions do not recognize our particular identities but only our more universally shared interests in civil and political liberties, income, health care, and education? In what sense should our identities as men or women, African-Americans, Asian-Americans, or Native Americans, Christians, Jews, or Muslims, English or French Canadians publicly matter?

Relationship between liberalism and multiculturalism is both complex and fiercely contested not only between two camps but within them also albeit in a lesser degree.

Traditionally liberal political theorists have been concerned with the same issues now (re)opened by multiculturalism: justice, equality, rights and freedom. The fundamental question for multiculturalism, however is whose conception of justice, rights or equality? (23)

The orthodox strand of contemporary liberalism still insists, says A. Gutmann. (24) that the impersonality of public institutions, is the price that citizens should be willing to pay for living in a society that treats us as equals, regardless of our particular ethnic, religious, racial, or sexual identities. It is neutrality of the public sphere that protects our freedom and equality as citizens. On this view, our freedom and equality as citizens rests only upon our common characteristics, and our universal needs for 'primary goods' such as income, health care, education, religious freedom, freedom of conscience, speech, press, and association, due process, the right to vote, and the right to hold public office. These are interests shared by almost all people regardless of their particular race, religion, ethnicity, or gender. Therefore there is no need for public institutions to recognize our particular cultural identities as a prerequisite of social justice. In addition, orthodox liberal egalitarians strike back to multiculturalists accusing them to support illiberal cultures. Is it really acceptable for liberalism that liberal democracies promote multiculturalism, when it includes different ethnic, religious or racial groups, even when most of them cultivate oppression of women and children. This last criticism has been emphasized especially by mainstream Western feminism.

Can we then conclude, asks Gutmann that all of the demands for recognition by particular groups, often made in the name of nationalism or multiculturalism, are illiberal and illegitimate demands? (25) Or is this conclusion too hasty? Asking in contrast--do most people need a secure cultural context to give meaning and guidance to their choices in life? If so, then liberal democratic states are obliged to help disadvantaged groups preserve their culture against intrusions by majoritarian or 'mass' culture.

For multiculturalists, liberal egalitarianism is simply a set (advanced though) of historically conditioned social and political practices. Multiculturalist theorists (such as W. Kymlicka, J. Tully, I. M.Young, Ch. Taylor and M. Walzer) suggest that the liberal approach reinforces relationships of dependence and domination and fails to take account of the cultural specificity of the original norm of equality of opportunity. (26) They express their dissatisfaction with the apparent cultural blindness or false neutrality of liberal norms of justice and inclusion, and argue that existing (supposedly universalistic) liberal norms of inclusion are already culturally biased, favoring certain 'primary goods'. Namely, if 'universal' rights are premised on a liberal conception of autonomy, then they may well run up against the internal norms of a culture which does not privilege autonomy as a source of a good life. Liberals either have to principally justify rejection of cultural practice or have to acknowledge that such a response unduly favors the liberal majority in deciding a society's norm of inclusion. In the latter case they fail to treat cultures equally, regardless whether they admit that or not.

The significance of culture is not sufficient to identify a theory as (critical) multiculturalist. (27) Various forms of relativism, particularism or conservatism attach importance to culture as well. One might highly cherish one's own culture, but disregard the other cultures as morally worthless. In that spirit the extreme right uses the language of culture in order to enforce uniformity or to deny rights to immigrants or ethnic minorities. Multiculturalists tend to distinguish themselves (more or less explicitly) from other theorists who use the concept of culture by also claiming to be egalitarians. Liberal multiculturalists such as Kymlicka are egalitarians in the sense of accepting the idea of equality of concern and respect as the basis of any viable moral and political theory.

Not all multiculturalist theorists are satisfied with the liberal egalitarian reliance on equality of opportunity. For radical multiculturalists such as I.M. Young or Nancy Fraser the turn towards group or cultural recognition follows from false neutrality of liberal distributive norms. Indeed, these radical theorists are convinced that it is liberalism's failure to take seriously the extent to which opportunities reflect unequal power relations. Young argues that (orthodox) liberal egalitarianism places concern for social and cultural groups in the wrong place. (28) The problem is not simply one distributing rights and resources to groups and cultures in order for their members to be regarded as 'equal'. The problem comes from the underlying social norms that constitute opportunities in the first place. In other words, Young is not concerned only with additional resources needed by social and cultural groups to access on equal footing the opportunities that others have. The point here is that opportunities are never neutral but always socially constructed with inbuilt inequalities of power and relations of domination and subordination. Therefore, the opportunities are the issue, and not merely access to them.

In other words radical, concludes Kelly, egalitarianism is less likely to be concerned with the distribution of resources as a primary task and more likely to be concerned with issues of group representation and proportionality. For example, Young regards the absence of group proportionality of outcomes (in holding, for instance, prestigious jobs) as evidence of structural group disadvantage which must be compensated for. We cannot merely explain away the disproportionate absence of, for example, black males in certain professions on the grounds that there were no cases of direct discrimination and that this difference in outcome is merely a function of different choices (as if blacks do not prefer them).

D. Rockefeller draws an inspiring analogy between radical environmentalism and (radical multiculturalism). Namely, radical environmentalists abandoned an anthropocentric orientation that views non-human life forms as existing solely as a means to human ends, and embraced a biocentric perspective that affirms the inherent value of all forms of life. "Furthermore, just as multiculturalists might criticize the positing of the achievements of one group, such as white European and American males, as the norm of fully developed humanity, so some environmentalists criticize an anthropocentric outlook that posits human beings as the final end of the creation process and as inherently superior to all other beings. In both cases there is an attack on hierarchical modes of thought that tend to diminish or deny the value of other beings". (29)

However, good intentions either of the sides in controversies over multiculturalism are not enough to guarantee for real social promotion of deprivileged (cultural) groups and their individual members. Martha Minow well captures the dilemma, which can not be solved in Manichean way. (30) "When does treating people differently emphasize their differences and stigmatize or hinder them on that basis? and when does treating people the same become insensitive to their difference and likely to stigmatize or hinder them on that basis?... The stigma of difference may be recreated both by ignoring and by focusing on it."

In conclusion, we agree with J. Banks in his argument that a multicultural (multiculturalist) society has to seek for a balance between diversity and unity. (31) One of the challenges to diverse democratic nation-states is to provide opportunities for different groups to maintain aspects of their community cultures while building a nation in which these groups are structurally included and to which they feel allegiance. A delicate balance of diversity and unity should be an essential goal of democratic nation-states and of teaching and learning in democratic societies. Unity must be an important aim when nation-states are responding to diversity within their populations. They can protect the rights of minorities and enable diverse groups to participate only when they are unified around a set of democratic values such as a justice and equality.

At the end I would like to say that I agree neither with Glazer and Kymlicka when they say that multiculturalist won in the world debate over multiculturalism, nor with B. Barry's a severe critique of multiculturalism as the "latest incarnation of the fallacies of the New Left", and an "intellectual dead end". It is, namely, pretty obvious that the challenges of multicultural societies are here to stay for some time in the future, and some answers to them may still be called multiculturalism or interculturalism.

Bibliography

1. Abu-Laban, Yasmeen; Gabriel, Christina, (2002), Selling diversity, immigration, Multiculturalism, Employment Equality, and Globalization, Broadview Press.

2. Banks, James (2006), A Cultural Diversity and Education, Foundations, Curriculum, and Teaching, Pearson Education.

3. Banting Keith; Kymlicka, Will (2006), "Introduction--Multiculturalism and the welfare state: Setting the context", in Banting Keith; Kymlicka, Will (eds.) Multiculturalism and the Welfare State, Recognition and Redistribution in Contemporary Democracies, Oxford University Press.

4. Barry, Brian (2001), Culture and Equality, An Egalitarian Critique of Multiculturalism, Polity Press.

5. Benhabib, Seyla (2002), The Claims of Culture, Equality and Diversity in the Global Era, Princeton Univeristy Press.

6. Matteo, Gianni (2001), "Multiculturalism, Differentiated Citizenship, and the Problem of Self-Determination", in: Dallmayr, Fred; Rosales, Jose M. (eds.) Beyond Nationalism? Sovereignty and Citizenship, Lexington Books.

7. Goldberg, David, Teo (1994), "Introduction: Multicultural Conditions", in Goldberg, David, Teo (ed.) Multiculturalism: A Critical Reader, Oxford & Cambridge: Blackwell.

8. Gutmann, Amy (1994), "Introduction", in Gutmann, Amy (ed.) Multiculturalism and "The Politics of recognition", Princeton University Press.

9. Kellner, Douglas (1998), "Multiple Literacies and Critical Pedagogy in a Multicultural Society", in Georg Katsiaficas; Kiros, Teodros (eds.), The Promise of Multiculturalism, Routledge.

10. Kelly, Paul (2003), "Identity, equality and power: tensions in Parekh's political theory of multiculturalism", in Multiculturalism, Identity and Rights , Bruce Haddock; Sutch, Peter (eds.), Routledge.

11. Kelly, Paul (ed.) (2002), Multiculturalism, Polity.

12. Kymlicka, Will (1996), Multicultural Citizenship, Cultural Diversity and political theory of minority Rights, Oxford: Claredon Press.

13. Kivisto, Peter (2002), Multiculturalism in a Global Society, Blackwell.

14. Klopp, Brett (2002), German multiculturalism--Immigrant Integration and the Transformation of Citizenship, Praeger.

15. McLaren, Peter (1994), "White Terror and Oppositional Agency: Towards a Critical Multiculturalism", in Goldberg, David T. (ed.), Multiculturalism: A critical reader, Oxford & Cambridge: Blackwell.

16. Miller, David (2006), "Multiculturalism and the welfare state. Theoretical reflections", in Banting Keith; Kymlicka, Will (eds.) Multiculturalism and the Welfare State, Recognition and Redistribution in Contemporary Democracies, Oxford University Press.

17. Minow, Marta (1990), Making "ALL" the Difference: Inclusion, Exclusion, and American Law, Ithaca.

18. Parekh, Bhikhu (2000), Rethinking Multiculturalism, Cultural Diversity and Political Theory, Palgrave.

19. Philips, Anne (1995), The Politics of Presence, Oxford University Press.

20. Rockefeller, Steven C. (1994), "Comment, in Gutmann, A. (ed.) Multiculturalism and "The Politics of Recognition", Princeton University Press.

21. Stam, Robert; Shohat, Ella (1994), "Contested Histories: Eurocentrism, Multiculturalism, and the Media", in. Goldberg, David T (ed.), Multiculturalism: A Critical Reader, Blackwell.

22. [UNESCO-.sub.a] (2006), Guidelines on Intercultural Education.

23. [UNESCO-.sub.b] (2005), Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, Article 5.

24. Young, I. M. (1990), Justice and the Politics of Difference, Princeton University Press.

Milan Mesic *

* Milan Mesic, PhD, teaches Sociology of migration and Multiculturalism at the Department of Sociology, University of Zagreb. E-mail: milan.mesic1@zg.htnet.hr

(1) Peter Kivisto, Multiculturalism in a Global Society, Oxford and Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2002, p. 20.

(2) Ibidem, p. 187.

(3) James Banks, A Cultural Diversity and Education, Foundations, Curriculum, and Teaching, Boston, MA: Pearson Education, 2006, pp. 70-71.

(4) Paul Kelly, Multiculturalism Reconsidered, Culture and Equality and its Critics, Cambridge: Polity Press, 2002, p. 1.

(5) Seyla Benhabib, The Claims of Culture, Equality and Diversity in the Global Era, Princeton and Oxford: Princeton Univeristy Press, 2002, p. vii.

(6) Brett Klopp, German Multiculturalism--Immigrant Integration and the Transformation of Citizenship, Westport, Connecticut, London: Praeger, 2002, pp. 23-24.

(7) Bhikhu Parekh, Rethinking Multiculturalism, Cultural Diversity and Political Theory, New York: Palgrave, 2000, p. 16.

(8) Robert Stam, Ella Shohat, "Contested Histories: Eurocentrism, Multiculturalism, and the Media", in David T. Goldberg (ed.), Multiculturalism: A Critical Reader, Oxford and Cambridge: Blackwell, 1994, p. 298.

(9) Keith Banting, Will Kymlicka (eds.), Multiculturalism and the Welfare State, Recognition and Redistribution in Contemporary Democracies, Oxford University Press, 2006, p. 1.

(10) UNESCO, Guidelines on Intercultural Education, 2006, p. 17.

(11) UNESCO, Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, 2005, Article 5.

(12) Peter McLaren, "White Terror and Oppositional Agency: Towards a Critical Multiculturalism", in David T. Goldberg, (ed.), Multiculturalism: A critical reader, Oxford & Cambridge: Blackwell, 1994, p. 53.

(13) Douglas Kellner, "Multiple Literacies and Critical Pedagogy in a Multicultural Society", in Georg Katsiaficas, Teodros Kiros, (eds.), The Promise of Multiculturalism, Routledge, 1998, pp. 213-215.

(14) Brian Barry, Culture and Equality, An Egalitarian Critique of Multiculturalism, Polity Press, 2001.

(15) Peter Kivisto, op.cit., p. 36.

(16) Anne Philips, The Politics of Presence, Oxford University Press., 1995, p. 12.

(17) Yasmeen Abu-Laban, Christina Gabriel, Selling diversity, immigration, Multiculturalism, Employment Equality, and Globalization, Broadview Press., 2002, p. 13.

(18) Gianni Matteo, "Multiculturalism, Differentiated Citizenship, and the Problem of Self-Determination", in: Fred Dallmayr, Jose M. Rosales (eds.), Beyond Nationalism? Sovereignty and Citizenship, Lexington Books, 2001, pp. 226-227.

(19) Parekh, op.cit., p. 6.

(20) Matteo, op.cit., p. 223.

(21) David Miller, "Multiculturalism and the welfare state. Theoretical reflections", in Banting, Kymlicka, op.cit., p. 223.

(22) Amy Gutmann, "Introduction", in Amy Gutmann, (ed.) Multiculturalism and "The Politics of recognition", Princeton University Press, 1994, pp. 3-4.

(23) Paul Kelly, "Identity, equality and power: tensions in Parekh's political theory of multiculturalism", in Bruce Haddock; Peter Sutch, (eds.) Multiculturalism, Identity and Rights, Routledge., 2003, p. 94.

(24) Amy Gutmann, op.cit., pp. 4-5.

(25) ibidem

(26) Paul Kelly, "Identity, equality and power ...", pp. 96-97.

(27) Paul Kelly, Multiculturalism, pp. 9-13.

(28) I.M. Young, Justice and the Politics of Difference, Princeton University Press, 1990.

(29) Steven C. Rockefeller, "Comment", in A. Gutmann, op.cit., p.93.

(30) Marta Minow, Making "ALL" the Difference: Inclusion, Exclusion, and American Law, Ithaca., 1990, p. 20.

(31) James Banks, A Cultural Diversity and Education, Foundations, Curriculum, and Teaching, Pearson Education, 2006, p. 23.
COPYRIGHT 2009 Universitatea Babes-Bolyai
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2009 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Mesic, Milan
Publication:Studia Europaea
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 1, 2009
Words:6303
Previous Article:Shoah and Tekuma--Jewish memory and morality between history and redemption.
Next Article:"Against all the others!". A study of marginal constestation in Romania based on discourse theory.
Topics:

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters