Liberalism and Culture

Joseph H. Carens

in Culture, Citizenship, and Community

Published in print March 2000 | ISBN: 9780198297680
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598937 | DOI:
Liberalism and Culture

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Focuses on Will Kymlicka's Multicultural Citizenship. Applauds the work's path‐breaking attention to actual practices of group recognition in liberal democratic societies but criticizes its reliance on the concept of ‘societal culture’ to articulate a theoretical justification for these practices. It argues that this concept undermines the moral claims of immigrants and of small, vulnerable national minorities and generates a monocultural understanding of citizenship rather than a multicultural one. It contends that the concept of justice as evenhandedness provides a better guide for multiculturalism than the concept of societal culture and uses an extended discussion of language policy to illustrate the claim.

Keywords: citizenship; immigrants; justice; Will Kymlicka; language policy; liberal democracy; multiculturalism; national minorities; practice; societal culture

Chapter.  18106 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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