An introduction to the multiculturalism in australia

External factors There were a number of factors, both external and internal, that generated this change. Externally there were, post-World War II, new ideas around the world about the nature of race.

An introduction to the multiculturalism in australia

Executive summary Multiculturalism has been a contested policy and concept since its introduction in Australia in the s. While maintaining some core principles, in the three decades since its introduction, federal multicultural policy statements have evolved in response to changing government priorities and responses to the challenges facing Australian society.

While Australian multicultural policy has its roots in government responses to the post-settlement issues facing migrants, through the s and s policy was articulated more broadly as an element of Australia's nation building narratives.

An introduction to the multiculturalism in australia

Today all Australian States and Territories have active policies and programs dealing with multiculturalism. Australia's last federal multicultural policy statement was issued in and intended to apply untilwith no new federal multicultural policy statements being issued since.

In the past ten years, at the national level multiculturalism has been subjected to criticism in public and political debate, with some expressions of support for earlier policies of assimilation and integration.

Australian public and political debate about multiculturalism in the last decade has been significantly impacted upon by issues that have had international resonance. Chief among these has been concern about the global threat of terrorism and the challenges of ensuring social cohesion in societies characterised by ethno-cultural diversity.

While these issues have manifested in different ways in immigrant-receiving countries in Europe, North America and in the United Kingdom in many cases public debates have questioned the limits of multiculturalism and governments have heightened their regulation of integration, citizenship and immigration.

As global migration increases in scale and complexity Australia, like many countries in the world, will continue to be faced with the challenges of constructively engaging the policy frameworks it has established in building a multicultural society, while finding innovative approaches to deal with the increasingly complex nature of contemporary diversity.

Introduction From its genesis as a policy framework to respond to the needs of immigrants, multiculturalism became a concept that articulated the character of the growing ethno-cultural diversity of society in the latter decades of the twentieth century.

Always contested, multiculturalism and An introduction to the multiculturalism in australia ethno-cultural diversity that it symbolises have become increasingly controversial and subject to scrutiny in response to the security and social challenges of the early twenty-first century.

This paper provides an overview of Australia's federal multicultural policies, briefly draws attention to state and territory multicultural policy frameworks, and reviews some key issues in recent public debates about multiculturalism in Australia and overseas, with a focus on post-immigration multiculturalism.

Part One of the paper reviews the evolution of Australia's federal multicultural policies between their introduction in the s up to the period of the federal election.

An introduction to the multiculturalism in australia

It is largely descriptive and is intended to identify key policy statements and reports surrounding government policy statements. Part Two of the paper highlights prominent issues in public debates about multiculturalism and ethno-cultural diversity through a review of relevant literature and media commentary.

The discussion focuses on issues in public debates in the last ten years, because—while the challenges of the past decade may, in many cases, have roots in the policies, practices and issues of previous decades—the events and concerns catalysing public debate in the past decade have profoundly changed the way in which society has engaged with the concept of multiculturalism.

Part Two broadens the discussion of multiculturalism beyond Australia in recognition of the fact that the issues, events, and even rhetoric, that have animated Australian debates about multiculturalism, particularly in the past ten years, transcend national borders and have reverberated in various forms in other parts of the world.

While there continue to be significant differences amongst the countries discussed there are also some interesting parallels. As global migration increases in scale and complexity Australia is one among many nations that are faced with the challenges of responding effectively and imaginatively to the increasing diversity of contemporary societies.

The Appendices to the paper contain a list of key Australian Government statements and reports, key Australian multicultural institutions, state and territory government documents and websites, and a list of key references and resources used in the paper.

Background Multiculturalism was a concept and policy devised to respond to the increasing ethno-cultural diversity of Australian society resulting from mass immigration in the decades following World War II, and the abandonment of racially restricted immigration policies in the s, in a way that overcame the limitations of previous approaches of assimilation and integration.

Assimilation policies of the s and s required new arrivals to learn English, adopt Australian cultural practices and become indistinguishable from the Australian-born population as quickly as possible.

By the late s, government policy had moved towards a policy of integration, reflecting a greater awareness of the difficulties faced by new migrants and an acceptance of the possibility that migrants could integrate successfully in Australian society without losing their national identities completely.

Echoing developments in other immigrant-receiving countries, notably Canada, by the late s there was a growing acceptance of broader expressions of cultural diversity or 'multiculturalism' within Australian society.

Over time the term 'multiculturalism' has come to refer to the demographic reality of cultural diversity, a set of policies and policy orientations, as well as a concept which articulates a normative ideal or ideals about society. Multiculturalism has served a variety of goals over the years, including, the pursuit of social justice, the recognition of identities and appreciation of diversity, the integration of migrants, nation-building, and attempts to achieve and maintain social cohesion.

From its inception, multiculturalism has been a contested policy and concept, both in Australia and overseas, with detractors often criticising it as a divisive policy and a concept that was allegedly lacking in substance and precision.

The Success of Australia’s Multiculturalism | Australian Human Rights Commission

In the past decade or so, in Australia, as well as a number of prominent immigrant-receiving countries in North America and Europe, the concept of multiculturalism has come under criticism.

In both public and government arenas, debate on the benefits of integration and assimilation has re-emerged. Public discourse on the concept and policy of multiculturalism, and ethno-cultural diversity more broadly, have variously evolved in accordance with the particular historical and political foundations of the countries referred to in this paper.

In the settler societies of Australia, the United States and Canada public discourse on multiculturalism is mediated by the particular settlement histories of each of those countries. A crucial element of cultural and race relations in each of those countries is the historical treatment of Indigenous peoples and their contemporary place and welfare in these societies.

As recognised, for example in the Australian context by the Australian Human Rights Commission AHRCdiscussions on multiculturalism must necessarily include Indigenous Australians and include engagement with issues of reconciliation. While the policy of multiculturalism was first introduced in Australia at a federal level, Australian state and territory governments have subsequently developed their own multicultural policy frameworks.

A significant proportion of multicultural policy development and implementation now occurs at the state and territory level and a great deal of work is also undertaken at the grassroots level, by community organisations and non-government organisations NGOs.

However, it is beyond the scope of the present paper to provide a detailed account of multicultural policy development and practice in each of the Australian states and territories, and the proliferation of multicultural initiatives at the grassroots level. The evolution of multiculturalism as Australian Government policy Inthe Curtin Government established Australia's first Department of Immigration in order to manage the post-war immigration of migrants and displaced persons.

The Government's assimilation policies were based on an assumption that this would not be difficult for new arrivals given time.

Settlement assistance was limited to the provision of migrant hostels and some language tuition. In our view, an acceptance of the multicultural nature of Australian society implies that government and established institutions acknowledge the validity of ethnic cultures and respond in terms of ethnic beliefs, values and customs What we believe Australia should be working towards is not a oneness, but a unity, not a similarity, but a composite, not a melting pot but a voluntary bond of dissimilar people sharing a common political and institutional structure.

As Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser explained:Nov 04,  · Description Multiculturalism is one of the most controversial ideas in contemporary politics. In this new book George Crowder examines some of the leading responses to multiculturalism, both supportive and critical, found in the work of recent political Paperback.

Introduction. Even though by far the largest groups of immigrants to Australia are and always have been from other Anglo-Saxon cultures (Britain, Ireland and New Zealand), the influx of other cultures to Australia has made ours a truly multicultural society. Australia is a multicultural society.

However, there are mixed feelings among the community about being multicultural. These conflicting viewpoints, stemming from things like the amount of education a person has, their upbringing, media exposure of certain race issues and the political nature of society, develop different attitudes towards .

Jul 30,  · What Is Multiculturalism? Our definition was developed for the Strategic Review of Professional Ministry Report (PDF, 64 pages), a deeply important document that was created through the dedication of many staff members. Multiculturalism in Australia is today reflected by the multicultural composition of its people, its immigration policies, its prohibition on discrimination, equality before the law of all persons, as well as various cultural policies which promote diversity, such as the formation of the Special Broadcasting Service.

Introduction; Multiculturalism; Australian Multiculturalism; Conclusion; Abstract. Despite its racist past, high and diverse immigration and enormous cultural and religious diversity, contemporary Australia is a highly successful and well functioning multicultural society.

The paper will analyse the reasons behind this success.

Multiculturalism in Australia - Wikipedia