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SCY3041 - Multiculturalism, Culture and Social Identities

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader: TBA


Clayton First semester 2007 (Day)


In Australia multiculturalism is both celebrated and criticised in debates about national identity. This unit aims to critically evaluate how ethnicities, migrants, minorities and culturally diverse groups are situated within Australia, as well as within the wider global context. We will examine the demographic profiles of some ethnic groups and various national policies for managing cultural diversity. Despite their socially constructed basis, ethnic, racial, minority and culturally diverse categories have real consequences that can result in social stratification, struggles for power and social resources, as well as social exclusion.


Students who study this unit will:
Acquire sociological perspectives and concepts relevant to the understanding of multiculturalism and ethnicity;
Learn how pluralist societies are organised at the structural and social level and how they are understood at the subjective, everyday level;
Acquire a more critical understanding of their own and other people's multicultural identities, and how cultural diversity intersects with other social identities;
Learn to critique accepted, taken-for-granted knowledges about culturally diverse groups and question hegemonic ideas about multiculturalism;
Develop oral and written skills in order to analyse empirical and theoretical material.


Response paper (1000 words): 25%
Research essay (2500 words): 50%
Test (1000 words ): 20%

Contact hours

One x 1 hour lecture and One x 1 hour workshop per week


A first-year sequence in Sociology or permission