Diversity And Multiculturalism

Read Complete Research Material


Diversity and Multiculturalism

Diversity and Multiculturalism

Multiculturalism is an ideology that supports the recognition of, respect for, and encouragement of multiple cultures within a society. Multiculturalism favors diversity rather than homogeneity and holds that the presence of diverse traditions and pluralistic viewpoints in a society are strengths to be celebrated rather than weaknesses to be overcome. Although the relevance of multiculturalism can be discussed for any number of societies, this entry focuses on the United States (Gibson, 1984).


Classrooms in the United States are currently experiencing the largest influx of immigrant students since the beginning of the twentieth century. Multicultural education attempts to foster positive relationships among these diverse students so that all students have a strong self-concept and can work in harmony with the group. This approach to education promotes social equality and cultural pluralism that can be later transferred to the workplace. In managing cultural diversity, it is important to recognize the many ways in which people differ from one another. They can vary in gender, age, ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, educational background, religion, physical and mental ability, military or veteran status, lifestyle, immigrant status, language facility, and many other ways. Cognitively, people vary in the ways they think, learn, process information, respond to authority, show respect, and reach agreements. People also vary in terms of their personal history, culture, and traditions, as well as in terms of family makeup and political outlook. Finding new ways to work together requires regarding people's differences not as reasons to separate or exclude, but as benefits to be made the most of.

There are other changes in U.S. demographics as well. In 2002, women constituted almost two-thirds of all new entrants into the workforce. One out of four people in the nation is African American, Hispanic, or Asian American. ...
Related Ads