Multiculturalism Vs. Melting Pot : This Essay Comapares Multiculturalism To The Melting Pot. It Includes Strengths And Weaknesses Of The Two Ideas, As Well As Descriptions And Concepts.

1001 words - 4 pages

Multiculturalism vs. Melting Pot

Before I begin discussing these two topics, we must fully understand what they mean. The definition in the dictionary states that, multiculturalism consists of, relates to, or is designed for the cultures of several different races. Whereas the word melting pot is not a term used in the dictionary. For the purpose of this assignment I will make up my own definition for both these terms.
Multiculturalism to me is defined as abundant amounts of cultures in one area. Or it is simply a society where many different types of people with diverse cultural backgrounds, religion, and traditional values and beliefs cohabit peacefully with one another. It is the unification of diverse cultures, multilingual talents, and the ability to accept one another. (Although this may not actually happen)
Others see it as the union of all creeds, colors, religion that is free from prejudice, an open minded group of people who are able to step beyond themselves and explore each others interests while keeping their own interests and lastly allowing oneself and others the flexibility to be able to express one's thoughts and definition of culture that is free from ridicule.
The term multiculturalism is usually used in reference to Canada more than it is to the U.S. However if we take a closer look, America is also multicultural, but they believe in the melting pot idea.
Multiculturalism does not mean the same thing to everyone. Before we can address the advantages or disadvantages of a multicultural society, we need to understand these differing viewpoints.
Melting pot: The word melt can mean to be dissolved. The image that I get when I think about this term, is a group of many different; diverse people that are being assimilated or dissolved into one people, the American people. It is where newcomers melt into the American way of life. Basically it is viewing yourself as an American first, and then your ethnic background second. This is the exact opposite idea from that of multiculturalism. However some multiculturalists consider the "melting pot" a metaphor for oppressive assimilation. To them, the only way you can melt in the pot is by assimilating--becoming similar to--the dominant or "hegemonic" white culture.

Strengths and Weaknesses:
Multiculturalism:
First we must understand that no nation is born multicultural. It is the people and way of life that determine this factor.
Multiculturalism was set up as a national symbol for Canadians and fulfilled the need for a distinctive Canadian identity.
As a political tool multiculturalism has several uses. The meeting of different life views, cultures, beliefs, religions, ethnic habits, etc.

Diversity is about accepting the whole person including the culture he or she brings - the customs, gestures, dress, voice quality, patterns of speech, hairstyles etc. Differences are okay to have.
Multicultural diversity is what results of centuries of immigration. All Canadians, including...

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