Multiculturalism, Assimilationism and Modernity

Leonardo de Arrizabalaga y Prado considers the relationship between multiculturalism, modernity and security.

Multiculturalism has failed. So say a British Prime Minister, a German Chancellor, and politicians, academics, and journalists, in Europe, America and elsewhere. For such politicians, multiculturalism threatens security. It leads to alien enclaves; no-go zones where the law of the land is not enforced, and home-grown terrorists breed. For such academics, multiculturalism threatens civility. The level of trust, responsibility and solidarity is lower in multicultural than unicultural societies. Mutually suspicious people do not cooperate in pursuit of common social goals. For such journalists, multiculturalism threatens liberty. In otherwise free societies grow ghettoes where women are oppressed and enslaved, gays assaulted, children abused and exploited.

Multiculturalism also has proponents and defenders among politicians, academics and journalists. For such politicians, multiculturalism serves diversity; a good in itself, with the added boon that it offends political opponents, while diluting their electorate. For such academics, multiculturalism exercises human rights, obeys the categorical imperative, and practices liberty, equality and fraternity. For such journalists, to oppose multiculturalism is to oppose all these, and is therefore evil. Its opponents must be racists, supremacists, bigots, fascists, chauvinists, revanchists and colonialists.

Who are these proponents and opponents of multiculturalism?

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