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Cohesion with Diversity? Immigration and Multiculturalism in Canada and Australia


Author Info

  • Jock Collins

    (University of Technology, Sydney)


Contemporary Canada and Australia are among the most ethnically-diverse societies in the world today. In the realtively short time of less than half a century, Canada and Australia have been transformed from mainly British - and in the case of Canada, British and French societies - to rank among the most multicultural of societies. The aim of this article is to explore the relationship between immigration, multiculturalism, ethnic diversity and social cohesion in Canada and Australia. The Australian and Canadian experience suggests that prejudice co-exists with tolerance, as does racism with social harmony and multiculturalism with ethnic inequality. This central contradiction is the key to understanding the contemporary Australian and Canadain immigration experience. This article explores this contradiction. It looks at the historical roots of immigration and immigartion policy in Australia and Canada before discussing contemporary developments in both countries. The article then looks at the emergence of multiculturalism, its, origins, contributions and contradictions in Australia and Canada before reviewing contemporary debates about immigration and multiculturalism in both countries. The dimensions of social cohesion in contemporary Australian and Canadian societies are reviewed before concluding with policy prescriptions for the continued triumph of tolerance over prejudice and social cohesion over conflict in both countries.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Finance Discipline Group, UTS Business School, University of Technology, Sydney in its series Working Paper Series with number 28.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: 01 Apr 1993
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uts:wpaper:28

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