The impact of multiculturalism on women

There are many books, articles, academic and non academic documents have been written refering Multiculturalism and its impact on Western and non-Western societies, spiritual or cultural groups. The purpose of this critical reappraisal is to analyze, give description, comparing and contrasting, carry oning analysis and rating of two different articles that discuses the same subject of Multiculturalism. Both articles are written by women’s rightist ‘s authors who argue the issues associating to gender and particularly adult females.

Description of two articles

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Article 1:

This article is written by Susan Moller Okin a feminist author who argues that policy shapers, guardians and advocators of multiculturalism in broad and democratic states, have non shown justness and equity when it comes to the issue of gender particularly adult females. She besides argues about the issues of immigrants and raises the inquiry that is why the immigrants, minority groups and autochthonal people failed to be portion of the bulk cultures in Western Countries. Womans were the most groups who felt that they were controlled by work forces in many facets of life ; hence, the assimilation of adult females in Western civilizations caused immense contention in the field of multiculturalism.

Article 2:

This article is written by Mandy McKerl, another feminist author who argues that adult females who come from different background, civilizations, minority groups and live in multiculturalism societies, lack self-esteem and self regard due to the force per unit area from the their ain civilizations and their ain communities. She presents her statements based on the position of these adult females in modern-day societies in which they encounter favoritism, bias, sexism, unfairness and deficiency of chances. She besides criticizes multiculturalism in Western broad democracy societies in which freedom, societal justness, societal equality and political representation are footings made by certain constitution to function merely the male dominant and ignore adult females rights, freedom, and societal justness. Again the accents here are on adult females who belong to cultural minorities and Muslim adult females in peculiar.

Comparison of the two articles

Similarities: The rubric of both articles indicates that there are similarities in the statements peculiarly from feminist point of positions. Both authors illustrate the deepness of the job that adult females are subjected to publish of inequality and societal justness in multiculturalism societies and broad democratic provinces. They criticize the policy shapers and the authorities establishment in neglecting to turn to the issue refering gender particularly adult females and to acknowledge that there is a spread in certain Torahs which left adult females to go vulnerable to sex maltreatment, female circumcision, colza, polygamy, domestic force, and violent deaths. In add-on, they present similar instances and illustrations from within Western multicultural societies where adult females and misss from different cultural background have been subjected to coerce matrimonies, kids matrimonies, menace, and in some instances nobbling. Harmonizing to both authors, this undue behaviour led to make negative impact on adult females and misss, and it besides has created ferocious tensenesss between the women’s rightist political orientations and guardian of multiculturalism in Western provinces.

Points of differences and contrast:

The writer of article 1 nowadayss her statements refering multiculturalism in a broader image, although her chief argument trades with issue of adult females rights that has been violated and ignored. In contrast to article 2, the writer expands her statements and engages in more inside informations to place the nucleus of the job that is hidden behind the mask of multiculturalism. Article 1, seldom diffuses treatment on cultural groups and its function in multiculturalism societies. In contrast to article 2, where the treatment is more energetic to research with the reader that cultural groups has the upper manus in commanding the lives and freedom of adult females. There are other positions and remarks sing the issue of multiculturalism by anthropologist in article 2, which could non be found in article 1.

Analysis and rating:

As the rubric of both articles suggest “ Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women ” ? Arguably this is the chief issue in both of the readings. The writers are non seeking a Yes or No reply here, but to exemplify statement if the society acknowledge and believe in the rights of adult females or believe in multiculturalism and disregard the rights of adult females. The other issue that the articles wanted to concentrate on is that in Western states, immigrants, Muslim adult females have been deprived from their kernel legal protections and have been looked at as third-class citizens.

Both writers argue that because of the tenet of multiculturalism, adult females from cultural background and different civilizations are exposed to force, sexism, polygamy, and misdemeanor of human rights. Harmonizing to Wihtol de Wenden, “ the Gallic response to such pattern as polygamy, deletion, and headscarves has frequently taken the signifier of the infliction of unsuitable countenances ” . She suggests that “ such countenances, far from assisting migratory adult females, tend to insulate them farther into a traditional universe that deprives them from equal rights and equal chance ” . ( Wihtol de Wenden, 1998, p. 140 ) . One can reason that some Western states believe that all these immigrants and adult females cherish one individual homogeneous civilization ; hence, they all should follow it, losing the fact that this misinterpretation in homogeneous civilization, has resulted in allowing most work forces to utilize the name civilization for their ain advantages by crushing, tormenting, and disrespecting adult females and misss.

Arguably, both writers are discoursing the same job sing the issues of multiculturalism, adult females, cultural groups, human rights, and policy shapers in same waies, but apply different attacks. For illustration, article 1 provinces that some group rights can, in fact, endanger and humiliate adult females. She illustrates her claim by giving an illustration of Gallic authorities ‘s leting few 1000s of male immigrants from African colonised states particular permission to convey multiple married womans into the state.

Ironically, the Gallic Torahs do non allow polygamy and the married womans ‘ ain terrible rejection to the pattern of polygamy, did non halt these work forces to get married multiple married womans ‘ . ( Okin, 1999, p. 10 ) . Okin strongly emphasizes that adult females should non be considered as deprived because of their sex and should non be treated as sex object to pleasure work forces. Volpp states that “ the premise that adult females are by definition more laden in minority civilizations can be traced to several theoretical base: the history of colonialism, word pictures of the women’s rightist topic, the bounds of liberalism, and the usage of binary logic ” . ( Volpp, 2001, p. 1195 ) . If this is the instance, than Western states should reject group rights that allow the pattern of polygamy on the foundation that they are indispensable to minority civilizations whose being may otherwise be threatened. ( Okin, 1999, p. 11 ) .

Similar statements can be found in article 2, in which Makerl highlights the issue of minority groups and their cultural rights of patterns. She reflects and analysis the statement which is presented in article 1 from historical and political background and this method is of import in raising the issue of multiculturalism and gender. She besides illustrates sentiments of multiculturalism from assorted minds, philosophers, and writers and relatively burden them to divide facts from fiction. ( Mckerl, 2007, p.192 ) .

There is a sense of making a impression of balance between feminism political orientation and the guardian of multiculturalism and in making so ; she is set uping a nexus of common argument to high spots and convey the issue of adult females that has been ignored for sometimes to the surface. In contrast to article 1, these type of analytical attacks and mentions to other writers are non present which makes her statements less energetic.

The issues of adult females and multiculturalism have been addressed by other authors such as, Johann Hari, Judit Hell, Himani Bannerji, and Sarah Song. The article entitled “ How multiculturalism is bewraying adult females ” by Johann Hari can be seen as a direct unfavorable judgment of multiculturalism in broad and Western societies. She demonstrates her statements by showing several instances of Muslim adult females who were subjected to force, colza, favoritism, and have been treated as third-class citizens. ( Hari, 2007 ) . She writes in different manner and more critical of societal justness and inequality of human rights particularly refering adult females. Although, her authorship may non be considered as an academic piece of work, but she engages highly good in raising the issues of adult females particularly in tribunals room. Arguably, there is a sense of resemblance in statements between this work and the old two articles despite the differences in attacks.

Another illustration of resemblances in statements can be found in the study of Judit Hell “ Women ‘s Issue and Multiculturalism ” in which the author present her statements about multiculturalism from feminist point of position to accent that there are many issues sing adult females and misss needed to be addressed in both public and private domain. ( Hell, n.d. ) . Judit, like Okin dressed ore in her treatment on the historical background to multiculturalism and elaborates on the gender issue, but this clip on gender of male that use civilization as an alibi to set up governments upon adult females and to subordinate them.

In this regard, judit argues that multicultural societies are divided into two classs of societies, traditional societies and modern societies. She suggests that in Christian Europe the traditional societies were patriarchal by nature and male were the dominant figures, therefore the position of adult females was defined. The other cultural communities groups, such as Hebrews, Gypsies and Muslims who arrived at ulterior phase and settled in Christian Europe, one time once more male were the dominant figures in these groups. Comparing the patriarchal position in traditional societies to modern societies, the intervention of adult females by these dominant male from these cultural groups were rough and crude. ( Hell, n.d. ) .

Himani in her essay “ A Question of Silence: Contemplation on Violence Against Women in Communities of coloring material ” raises issues refering multiculturalism and adult females, but her manner in this peculiar essay is wholly different from Okin and Mckerl. She presents her authorship in a signifier of a missive that is written to a friend in free poetry manner. She states “ Interrupting with scholarly protocols, I am composing this piece as a missive to you because what I want to state demands an corporal reader ” . ( Bannerji, 2000, p. 151 ) . This piece of authorship is dedicated to friends and in it the author opens up her treatment turn toing the misdemeanor of adult females rights with exceptional mentions to cultural minorities ‘ adult females in Canada. The piece is good structured and full of proficient words, but easy to follow its chief statement.

Sarah Song, is another feminist academic author who highlights issues of multiculturalism and adult females in America. In her statements, she presents instance surveies of several adult females from Hong Kong, China, India, and America who have been kidnapped and raped by work forces. She states that “ non so long ago in the United States, unless there was obvious grounds of coercion, an American adult female bear downing colza had to convert the tribunal that she had resisted the suspect ‘s progresss “ to the uttermost ” . ( Song, 2007, p.93 ) . Because of the nature of the instances that she has presented, her manner of authorship is really descriptive and critical. Tradition and civilization are the chief subjects that run throughout her statements and seemingly it is critical instead than impersonal.

In general, the above articles are written from feminist point of positions and highlighted issues refering multiculturalism and the position of adult females in the multicultural societies. The presentations of some statements are converting and directly to the point where societal unfairness and inequality of adult females were addressed throughout the articles. Article 2 in peculiar is more piquant and interesting because it involves depth statements and involves the reader to do a determination for him/herself either to hold or differ with the treatment that is presented. It is an rational article which contest political, spiritual, cultural, and gender issues that evolve around us to understand the nucleus of the jobs that we are confronting in this multicultural societies.


Feminist authors have presented theories and political orientations of multiculturalism in different positions and argued that civilization, tradition, faith, and political relations play an of import function in determining and commanding adult females.

The reading of multiculturalism in itself could be equivocal and cultural differences in certain parts of broad societies are governed by dominant male and this will non assist in authorising adult females.

The articles presented positions and challenged the guardian and agents of multiculturalism through showing instances of maltreatment, sexism, favoritism, societal unfairness and challenged the policy shapers that certain Torahs are bias and prejudice towards adult females.

Each article has its alone manner in manner and statements despite the differences and similarities that embedded throughout the treatment. Each article had delivered the necessary message deeply.

The argument and the tenseness between feminism and multiculturalism protagonists has created a balance of understanding each other positions to some extent although the division in statements will go on in old ages to come.


Bannerji, H. ( 2000 ) . The Dark Side of the Nation- Essays on Multiculturalism, Nationalism and Gender. Canadian Scholars ‘ Press Inc. Toronto, Ontario.

Hari, J. ( 2007 ) . How Multiculturalism is bewraying Women [ online ] The Independent News Paper. Available from: hypertext transfer protocol: //

Accessed: 4th November 2010.

Hell, J. No day of the month. Women ‘s Issue and Multiculturalism. [ on-line ] . Available from: hypertext transfer protocol: //

Accessed: 1st November 2010.

McKerl, M. ( 2007 ) ‘Multiculturalism, Gender and Violence: is multiculturalism bad for adult females? ‘ , in Culture and Religion, Vol. 8, No.2

Okin, S.M. ( 1999 ) ‘Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women? ‘ , in Cohen, J. and Howard, M. ( explosive detection systems ) ‘ Is Multiculturalism Bad For Women ‘ ? Princeton University Press, USA.

Song, S. ( 2007 ) Justice, Gender, and The Politicss of Multiculturalism. Cambridge University Press, USA.

Volpp, L. ( 2001 ) . Feminism versus Multiculturalism. In JSTOR accessed online at hypertext transfer protocol: //

Accessed: 1st November 2010.

Wenden, C.W. ( 1998 ) . Young Muslim Women in France: Cultural and Psychological Adjustments. In JSTOR accessed online at hypertext transfer protocol: //

Accessed: 1st November 2010.



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