Majority Norms, Multiculturalism, and Gender Equality

Citation:

Song, Sarah. 2005. “Majority Norms, Multiculturalism, and Gender Equality.” The American Political Science Review 99 (4): 473–489.

Author: Sarah Song

Abstract:

Although many scholars have discussed the conflict that can arise between multiculturalism and gender equality, both critics and defenders of multiculturalism have largely overlooked a variety of interactive dynamics between majority and minority cultures that have important implications for the theory and practice of multiculturalism. Examining cases in the U.S. context, this essay argues for an interactive view of the dilemmas of gender and culture that is attentive to interconnections between majority and minority cultures. What is of particular concern for debates on multiculturalism is that the mainstream legal and normative frameworks within which minority claims for accommodation are evaluated have themselves been informed by patriarchal norms, which in turn have offered support for gender hierarchies within minority cultures. The interactive view defended here suggests the need to scrutinize both minority and majority norms and practices in evaluating the claims of minority cultures.

Topics: Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Gender Equity Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2005

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