Multiculturalism in Australia – Report Example

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The paper "Multiculturalism in Australia" is a great example of a report on sociology. The concept of multiculturalism entails considerable intricacy, and it incorporates several disparate issues. For instance, this concept can be utilized in a naï ve and descriptive manner to characterize a society. Nevertheless, it can constitute a normative – cognitive concept, or a means to justify the view that cultures are fundamentally hybrid in nature. In addition, multiculturalism can be employed to provide ethnic identity with political force and as a defense against the policies of assimilation. Moreover, it can be construed as an attempt at subverting progress and destabilizing the homogenizing, beneficial, and unifying policies of the nation.

As had been suggested by Carter and Pappas, in their research paper, a country is endowed with multiculturalism, only if it is willing and capable of undertaking direct action and deploying resources towards achieving multiculturalism. Some of the choices available to a nation that dubs itself multicultural are described in the sequel. The first of these merely permits a basic right to exist to immigrant communities and their cultures. However, such bestowal of basic rights does not include equal rights.

In other words, the host culture ascribes to itself and preserves superiority; and cultural diversity is established on an explicit hierarchy of cultures. Another option available to the multicultural society is to encourage the notion of equal citizenship. This entails the bestowal of equal rights to immigrant societies, which includes the right to retain their own culture. In reality, the rights provided to immigrant societies lie in between these two extremes. Evidently, the basic question remains unanswered; namely to what extent can minorities exercise their right to communal organization, family, language, religion, and communal customs, without posing a threat to the political unity of the society of the nation as a whole.

Those who support multiculturalism are vociferous in their claim that cultural diversity improves democratic processes. It has been suggested that a distinction should be drawn between the proposals emanating from multiculturalism and the demands made of the social-democratic welfare state. Multiculturalism proposals require the members of an ethnic minority group to portray themselves as being different from the cultural perspective. In Australia, multiculturalism is well entrenched and despite the confusion and inspiration that outsiders experience on account of it, immigration policy is very important in the politics of multiculturalism.

Since the past half-century, there have been immigrants to Australia from more than 120 nations. In addition, since the year 1960, the annual net increase in Australia’ s population has been in excess of 50, 000. The inflow of persons from other nations can be assessed from the fact that over the period 1960 to 1970, there had been a net increase of 100,000.

Immediately after the end of the war, the number of people who had been born in Australia was around 90% of the total population. This reduced to 25% by the year 1998. In addition, there were 2.4 million out of a total of 18 million inhabitants, who did not speak English as their first language. The proportion of such non – English speaking persons has depicted a gradual increase over the years.

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