Politics of Multiculturalism Recommendations?
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Anyway, I've read Sen, Rawls, Habermas, and Nussbaum, still don't feel like I've wrapped my little brain around the issue very well and would appreciate any suggestions for further anyone might offer.
Other suggestions depend a little on what topics interest you about/within multiculturalism and what theoretical/philosophical approaches you prefer. Here are a few general suggestions:
Multiculturalism: Examining the Politics of Recognition with an essay by Charles Taylor and responses from other authors (ed. Amy Gutmann)
Is Multiculturalism Bad for Womauthoen by Susan Moller Okin (1999?)
Culture and Equality: an egalitarian critique of multiculturalism by Brian Barry (2001)
The Claims of Culture by Seyla Benhabib (2002)
Multiculturalism without Culture by Anne Phillips (2007)
I could add a few more, but those would be a good start.
There's also a recent-ish anthology called Multiculturalism and Political Theory that looks good and has chapters from several of the main scholars in this area. That would probably be a good way to get a sense of the current literature and debates.
My interest has become pretty general after beginning as an issue of practical municipal governance. The story is longer than would likely interest anyone, but the result was me reflecting on how to engage a sizable but politically-invisible population without damage to the accepted (among the engaged) terms of public discourse and without privileging that invisible population.
Now my interest has taken on a life of its own and become a sort of hobby, like playing the harmonica but quieter, and with a potential payoff (of sorts) if my head-scratching results in anything I can take action on.
Thanks for taking the time.
Reading this thread and others it has occurred to me that I simply don't have a clue what multiculturalism teaches or advocates. Perhaps I don't have a clue because I live in the United States, albeit I hear frequently that the United States is a very bad example of a multicultural society.
So help me out. Which of the following, if any, is a true statement about multiculturalism.
Multiculturalism is simply the old "tolerance" of John Locke and others, with perhaps a bit more emphasis on empathy to "other" cultures.
Multiculturalism in fact advocates the dissolution of distinctive cultures, particularly "majority" cultures.
Multiculturalism is simply Europeans expressing the desire that their continual conflicts with one another will be given a rest.
Multiculturalism really isn't a "political philosophy" at all, because it teaches nothing about an ideal set of political institutions and advances no arguments about why such institutions are ideal.
If none of the above are true, what statements about multiculturalism are true and properly characterize this view?
Multiculturalism is incomplete.
My single qualification for responding is that I'm still around, but I'll give it a shot. "Multiculturalism" isn't a single view, but a large grouping of views, more-or-less gathered around the understanding that (nowadays) nation-states all contain within their borders populations of people belonging to different cultures, and that it's better to make provisions in the governing institutions of the state to accommodate cultural differences than it is not to.
So, "multiculturalism" would find its antithesis in "integrationism" (I may have made that word up), wherein the institutions of the state require that all the people within the borders be integrated into the dominant culture, at least for the purposes of governance.
I think your four questions probably represent four advocacy positions so couldn't be said to be true of "multiculturalism" as a broad political theory.
And I have no idea what you mean that my previous points are "advocacy positions." They are, rather, characteristics of multiculturalism that I've seen elsewhere. They are thus either true or false or true of some sorts of multiculturalism but false of others.
Got it. Any inquiry seeking definiteness is "wanting to start an argument." Very interesting.
Anyway, I have book recommendations. Fictional, but you may find interesting as studies of multiculturalism, racism and identity.