Full course description
Contemporary western societies are characterized by cultural plurality: different social communities have different values and lifestyles. Over the past two decades this diversity has become a growing source of concern about how to reconcile the demands of plurality and identity, in order to safeguard social and cultural cohesion. The course considers a number of normative dilemmas that arise from the current co-existence of a diversity of cultural traditions. Discussions are about western values, Asian values and Islam; universalism and relativism; modernity, secularism and the role of religion; human rights; globalisation; the politics of emotion.
- To learn to describe the current challenges arising from diverse cultural identities in a globalized world, and to understand the historical, intellectual and social genealogies of these challenges in western society.
- To be able to identify and evaluate diﬀerent positions in current debates on cultural values and to make reasoned contributions to such debates.
Bhikhu Parekh (2000). Rethinking Multiculturalism. London/New York: Palgrave.
Michel Houellebecq (2015). Submission. Penguin Random House.