Multiculturalism Is An Integral Part Of Canada Essay

Multiculturalism Is An Integral Part Of Canada Essay

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Multiculturalism has been an integral part of Canada since its adoption by the Trudeau government in 1971 and its formal implementation through The Canadian Multiculturalism Act in 1988 (Burnett and Dreidger, 2014). Multiculturalism has allowed for Canada to engage in a complex social, political, and economic experiment that has heavily informed policy and decision making. In this essay I shall argue that multiculturalism in it’s current form is a failed project. The noble goals of positive social, economic, and educational development as well as the preservation of culture and identity have shifted. The focus of market strategy in multicultural policy has diluted the main tenets of multiculturalism. The search for a meaningful life, trust, and upholding national identity have been lost by making multiculturalism a market strategy. Using policy in this way alienates, assimilates, and depoliticises cultural groups for the benefit of the majority.

Multiculturalism can be characterized in three ways, as a philosophy, a policy, and as a tool to map demographic trends (Hasmath 2016). At its core, multiculturalism is an approach which can be used to foster and sustain ethnic and cultural differences by using social, economic and educational mean to celebrate diversity. (Hasmath 2016). Using The Canadian Multiculturalism Act as the basis of understanding multicultural policy, particularly sections three and five, which outline the policy and actions government must take to enact them, it can be inferred that the goals of Canadian government are to foster and include all cultures, ethnicities and religions in society. Using demographic trends, the government can understand how certain groups settle within Canada and how to accommodate th...


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...l frameworks, is a difficult venture but would make Canadian democracy more just. Working solely within a Western, Judeo-Christian frame work for law, policy is more assimilative instead of accommodating. Embedding these practices into the way the country is governed can build trust, national identity, and allow for minorities opportunity to seek a meaningful life. Celebrating cultural identity alone can be problematic and divisive as it does not recognize the varying needs and levels of access to education, economic, political, and social institutions certain groups have over others. (Hasmath 2016) Cultural festivals as they exist today adhere to the marketing schema of multiculturalism. There is pandering to the idea of acceptance and growth but in actuality they display a caricature of the cultural group and makes the group appear apolitical. (Reiss 2011, 67 & 76)

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