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SOSC 3391 Chapter Notes -Ancient Greek Philosophy, Reasonable Person, Eurocentrism

Social Science
Course Code
SOSC 3391
Tanja Juric

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May 9, 2012
Canada’s official multiculturalism began with a statement that Trudeau made in the House of
Commons on October 8, 1971 (p. 27)
Xenophobia fear/hatred of that which we do not know i.e., different heritage and cultural
identity in U.S
o This attitude creates a fertile ground for xenophobia
Possibility for respect being reciprocal we become empowered and we see that in acting and
celebrating our own, others also celebrate their own and we’re more aware in sharing the
identities this is idealistic but on a philosophical abstract this was the goal
Trudeau wanted to aim for neutrality neutrality should speak to not preferencing any group, but
so often it’s just a venire for mainstream status quo to go unchecked – claiming that we’ve
achieved neutrality is the problem, neutrality doesn’t seem to be compatible with Trudeau’s
multiculturalism or the multiculturalism we have today (i.e., hybrid model) there’s nothing
neutral about our identity or about the shared values that we contribute to Canadian society
Trudeau wanted to create a multicultural nation that didn’t draw from one particular culture
Choosing culture to fit us having the freedom to test things out, to trust the individual to have the
intellectual capacity to try different attitudes and adopt them as their own, free will in terms of
creating/recreating attitudes for us anew. We can go out and seek different attitudes that people
Trudeau was looking to empower individuals with their religions so that they can then go out and
teach other people about their religion
White Paper Aboriginal peoples rejected the White Paper because they considered themselves
separate from Canadians; they wanted to have the choice to follow their own laws, and they saw
WP as forcing them to conform to Canadian law
Nationalism often associated with citizenship, collective egoism collective self, collective
identity unifying identity. Canada is often accused of not having a cohesive identity
Homogeneity equal from beginning to end, all the same, consistent in every parcel
Heterogeneity many, multiple, diverse, looks different in different parts rather than homogenous
which is exactly the same throughout
Rivalry is not solved through homogeneity, but more likely solved through heterogeneity
Practical measure (p. 36):
1. measures to increase immigration from parts of the world not adequately represented in
the base population of the multicultural society;
2. measures to suppress discriminatory reactions of the dominant majority group to the
increasing presence of Others; - to support legislation against hate speech, but at the same
time it’s dangerous to prevent people from exchanging ideas
3. measures to reduce the political power and discretion of elected representatives, combined
with other measures to increase the responsibilities of judges and other independent
authorities, judges could be indoctrinated to think a certain way by virtue of their culture,
schooling. In the process of education and questioning the values used to judge cases, we
learn more across the board not just particular religions, genders etc. Racist attitudes
come from assuming that just because someone comes from a particular background that
they’ll think a certain way. We can demand that those in political power answer to the
political values and ideals that we have as citizens
P. 40 ideal citizen
Locke on tolerance each individual has the right to own themselves, their culture, and has the
right to not be prejudice against other cultures and other languages

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Trudeau put forward the power to individuals to own their language and culture and uses this as a
resource and a value to Canadian diversity
The kinds of immigrants that Trudeau was targeting was a European Canadian and not one of
middle eastern/African etc. therefore his response might be limited in that he’s responding to his
particular political climate
Multicultural identity dominant term/discourse used by Trudeau and government official;
language shifted from pluralistic to hybrid because it’s outdated in the sense that it’s tainted
with this dominant white male norm
Pluralist (ic) identity multiple identities
Hybrid identity (fusion of identities, deliberate selection of, fluidity of identities the process of
hybridization is a collection of religious and cultural identities that is adaptable to the
o Liberal individualism as individuals we have the right to our own voice, freedom, etc., and
we have the right to exercise that identity, we’re no longer seen in a monocultural context
o Actively creating a hybrid identity becomes a useful skill/attitude to make you potentially
more marketable and successful in a multicultural world, a composite of various identities
also in terms of religion and religious traditions
o Creates a more cohesive identity, deliberate decision to create this malleable identity
Trudeau took multiculturalism seriously, and saw it as being important, rather than an
assimilative model like in the U.S. Americans have this clash with the rest of the world because
they have a fixed identity, whereas Canadians have a porous identity that changes and adapts
Liberal is not the same as liberal
o Liberal = political party
o liberal = freedom, equality, individual

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May 14, 2012
Aristotle, virtue ethics - part of the citizenship process, what is good is not a complete picture,
we’re inherently political animal, e.g., if we complain about the politician of the day but don’t act
on it, it’s a problem, the “good” is appropriate only in the particular context, depending on the
goods negotiated on
o Greek philosophy is based punitive model made out of fear
We have a different system whereby we decide what we feel is good and develop rights from that
i.e., freedom of the individual
Multiculturalism as a right vs. virtue - rights language is legally based - it’s a sediment in the law
that it’s based on neo-liberalist worldview, the key issue is that when we talk about
multiculturalism being rights based, it forces the individual to use the law as a weapon to assert
their rights
Law (language/framework)
Individual/group/ cultural rights
Exercised in anonymous facets
Grounds the values as something substantial
for us to use, it justifies the kinds of values
that we use in the public sphere (i.e.,
accommodation of religious difference), and
provide a legal guarantee for anyone moving
to Canada that they’re allowed to practice
their religion
Civic humanism
o Civic = unity, pride
o Humanism = humans have some unique
qualities different from animals, and we
owe it to one another to exercise this
faculties and exist in the world in peace
and harmony, the world is structured by
humans, and therefore we have the
right and obligation to create the world
we want to live in.
Essentially, humans are working together to
create this ideal world, a social
constructivist view of the world, we’ve
created norms and values, and they’re not
given to us by Divine origin (i.e., a
theologically-oriented world view)
Having something written in a legal
document, even if it’s flawed, prejudicial etc.,
when it’s sedimented in law it becomes
something that can be critiqued, or undone.
When it’s not written, we cannot improve it
to make it anew
Will Kymlicka’s thesis regarding multicultural rights: calls multicultural rights a liberal theory of
minority rights if liberalism is focusing on the freedom of the individual, is it compatible with
minority rights? It’s based on this idea of each individual having the right to having their own
identity, and exercise their freedom as an individual to construct and celebrate their identity this
is the way that minority rights become part of the liberal theory
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