How to build a successful multicultural society
Sustainably managed immigration and successful policies for multiculturalism
Immigration and multicultural policies are the lifeblood of a diverse society. But if they are poorly designed, they can be bad for both immigrants and existing populations alike.
The beauty of a mosaic lies in the harmony of its varied pieces.
The symphony of flavors in a melting pot are defined by the fusion of ingredients.
The no-hyphen assimilation model is for those who want to assimilate and a culture that welcomes them.
The illustration below from A Theory of Everyone contrasts the challenges and benefits of different models of multiculturalism.
In Canada's ideal mosaic model, different cultures connect to form a compelling tapestry of diversity. Each community coexists-separate *and* interconnected. But when put under pressure, mosaics may be more fragile than glass melted into a single pane. 🇨🇦
America, in contrast, sometimes idealizes a mighty melting pot, stirring together various cultures into a distinct and vibrant American identity. All cultures are contributors, none dominating, crafting a uniquely American blend. But different-sized populations and levels of wealth and power may lead to famed fantasy author Terry Pratchett's fictional city of Ankh-Morpork - ‘the melting pot of the world, which occasionally runs foul of lumps that don’t melt’.🗽
France, on the other hand, idealizes the no-hyphen model. Here, you are French, period and full stop. Cultural and ethnic backgrounds do not define citizenship; every individual stands equal in this shared society. "Roots are an individual reality," as Gérard Araud, the French Ambassador to the US, once chided comedian Trevor Noah, who joked that Africa and not France had won the 2018 World Cup because the 14 French soccer players of African ancestry hadn't gotten their tan "by hanging out in the South of France". The recent French riots reveal that France falls far short of its ideal. 🇫🇷
I introduce the umbrella model - nurturing a successful society is not unlike building a successful large, multinational company. People must see themselves as being part of the same team, have a shared vision, and recognize their futures as tied together. There must have sufficient resources and investment in infrastructure so that the umbrella covers all and so conflict doesn't leave everyone standing out in the rain. No country achieves this, but with programs like the Australian Cultural Orientation Program (AUSCO), investment in helping migrants build new lives, Australia comes close, marred by policies such as those that leave potential refugees languishing and its historic shameful treatment of its indigenous citizens, with unresolved challenges that persist to this day. 🦘
Crafting a flourishing multicultural society is no small feat, but pay dividends to those who have just arrived and those who have lived for generations.
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Umbrella model of Multiculturalism
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