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The Meanings of Multiculturalism

What is multiculturalism? What is the place of this idea in U.S. education? And what did German Chancellor Angela Merkel mean when she said multiculturalism is dead?

In November, the eighth annual Ray Warren Multicultural Symposium offered three days of discussions focusing on the meanings of multiculturalism in the United States and abroad. Speakers included Gary Younge (a columnist for the Guardian), who spoke on multiculturalism in Europe, and Gary Okihiro (Columbia University) and Geneva Gay (University of Washington’s Center for Multicultural Education), who spoke about multiculturalism in U.S. education.

The symposium concluded with a performance of the Race Monologues, written and performed by a group of Lewis & Clark students. Always a highlight of the symposium, the Race Monologues is an emotionally charged and thoughtful expression of students’ experiences with racism, ethnicity, and personal identity.

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