Aboriginals, colonists and multiculturalism: the dialectic of recognition and social exclusion in Australian history


Gare, Arran

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Developing Hegel's ideas on the dialectic of recognition and its role in the evolution of civilization, Charles Taylor in a seminal work, Multiculturalism and the 'Politics of Recognition' (since translated into Italian, French and German), characterized multiculturalism, in which different cultures within a country are recognized and respected, as a new phase in ethical and political development (Taylor and Gutmann, 1992; Taylor, 1994). Australia is unique in modern history in the extent to which it embraced multiculturalism and abandoned nationalism the commitment to a territorial community the membership of which is defined first and foremost in terms of place of birth. It appears to be a post-nationalist, multicultural society that celebrates its cultural diversity. Far from being social outcastes, immigrants, who are selected for their level of education, have a higher average income than native born Australians. Australia, therefore, might seem to provide a vision of the future for those countries striving to overcome the exclusionary tendencies of their nationalist heritage. [Introduction]

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Book chapter


Social exclusion: an approach to the Australian case / D. Weiss (ed.), Chapter 1, pp. 25-60


Peter Lang




Copyright © 2003 Peter Lang. The published version is reproduced with the permission of the publisher.