Cultural Festivals: More Alienating Than Fostering Multiculturalism?

In such a globalised world, it’s common to find cultural festivals on show every now and then around us today. When ethnic festivals pop up in a Western city, words that spring to mind when we think about them include, ‘traditional customs’, ‘diverse cultures’ and ‘multicultural’.

But looking closely at cultural festivals, at times these culturally vibrant shindigs that often attract people of all walks of life in attendance do not wholly perpetuate the ideals of multiculturalism.

The JCAF 2012. Acoustic Japanese music performance by Shigeo Furukawa and Claire Jackson on stage. Photo by Sue Chen.

The JCAF 2012. Acoustic Japanese music performance by Shigeo Furukawa and Claire Jackson on stage. Photo by Sue Chen.

The gist of multiculturalism is about interacting and getting along harmoniously with our friends, colleagues and acquaintances of culturally diverse backgrounds and learning to respect the beliefs and customs of our fellow citizens no matter their religion.

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