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Document Type:Latin Dissertation
Language of Document:English
Record Number:53211
Doc. No:TL23165
Call number:‭3347667‬
Main Entry:Vijayan P. Munusamy
Title & Author:Decoding the meaning of multiculturalism: An international study of Malaysia, Singapore and Hawai'iVijayan P. Munusamy
College:University of Hawai'i at Manoa
Date:2008
Degree:Ph.D.
student score:2008
Page No:362
Abstract:Sociologists, anthropologists, political scientists, and psychologists have all studied multiculturalism from their disciplinary perspectives, which has led to more confusion than clarity about this construct. This study took an interdisciplinary approach and examined the meaning, the antecedents and the consequences of this construct in Malaysia, Singapore and Hawai'i through multiple methods (focus group, grounded theory, historical analyses and emic-etic model building) and multiple data sources (letters to the editor, historical documents and interdisciplinary perspectives from cross-cultural researchers). Four successive phases were undertaken - (1) capturing interdisciplinary definitions of multiculturalism, (2) developing emic models of multiculturalism, (3) developing etic models of multiculturalism, and (4) testing emic models and refining etic models of multiculturalism. The etic model shows that true multiculturalism can only be achieved if there are community citizenships, efficient governance and effective local and global multicultural policies and laws. These elements together are crucial for promoting fair and equal access for basic needs, parity of acknowledgment, non-sectarian leadership, and natural intercultural interactions in multicultural societies. This study found that capacities for having meaningful dialogues on multicultural issues are only possible if these characteristics are present. It was found that embracing indigenous concepts such as " Muhibbah " in Malaysia and "Aloha " in Hawai'i and superordinate identity concepts such as "One Nation, One People, One Singapore " in Singapore can help to increase these capacities. This study suggests that development of superordinate identity can foster multiculturalism beyond what superordinate goals, equal contact and respecting differences can help achieve. It was also found that both positive and negative historical events, modern origin of the nation and ecology shape the development of multiculturalism. This study shows that it is not sufficient to avoid complacency and it is necessary to examine the so called effective multicultural policies for their latent negative consequences. Finally, this study also found that multiculturalism is a multi-level construct and to be effective it requires the effort at all levels, from individual to parents to educational institutions to organizations (ethnic based, religious, social, business) to government and to media.
Subject:Social sciences; Education; Multiculturalism; Grounded theory; Emic; Pluralism; Multicultural; Culture; International; Malaysia; Singapore; Hawaii; Bilingual education; Cultural anthropology; Management; 0326:Cultural anthropology; 0454:Management; 0282:Bilingual education
Added Entry:D. P. S. Bhawuk
Added Entry:University of Hawai'i at Manoa