Cultural pluralism

Cultural pluralism is a term used when small groups within a larger society maintain their unique cultural identities. One of the most notable cultural pluralisms is the caste system, which is related to Hinduismand also the example of Lebanon where 18 different religious communities co-exist on a land of not more than 10000km2. In a pluralist culture, unique groups not only co-exist side by side, but also consider qualities of other groups as traits worth having in the dominant culture. The current contemporary art world in the 21st century is an example of cultural pluralism. For another example, a community center in the United States may offer classes in Indian yoga, Chinese calligraphy, and Latin salsa dancing. That community may also have one or more synagogues, mosques, mandirs, gurudwaras, and/or Buddhist temples, as well as several churches of various Christian denominations.

The existence of such institutions and practices are possible if the cultural communities responsible for them are protected by law and/or accepted by the larger society in a pluralist culture.

The idea of cultural pluralism in America was first mentioned in Randolph Bourne's essay "Trans-National America" in 1916.


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