Jessica Chen Globalization is a process where people of the world become more interdependent and connected through integration among cultures, international trade between countries and interactions between governments of nations. Cultural globalization had an immense impact on many cultures around the world and impacted the prosperity and quality of life of all citizens. Many laws and legislations are in place to ensure that Canada is and will remain a multicultural and very diverse country. Source one is the Multiculturalism Policy that is part of the Canadian Multiculturalism Act entrenched in the Constitution of Canada.
These policies encourage new and old immigrants to retain their sense of collective identity with their ethnic groups by passing laws that protect their freedom of belief, and establishing the Human Rights Commission to protect them from racial, national, ethnic original or colour discrimination. It states that “the Constitution of Canada and the Official Languages Act provide that English and French are the official languages of Canada and neither abrogates or derogates from any rights or privileges acquired or enjoyed with respect to any other languages.” This law exists because of Canada’s English and French heritage and is a result of the 1963 Royal Commission that was appointed to study relations between both Anglophones and Francophones. In 1965 it was found that the French were underrepresented in government matters therefore the Official Languages Act was passed in 1969 and Commissioner of Official Languages was appointed to affirm the equality of both languages and resolve any further issues. However, this does not give the two languages any superior right or advantage in society.
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Through the two world wars, Canada had received many refugees from many different countries with diverse cultures. These policies’ purpose is to protect the individual’s fundamental freedom allowing them to be free from discrimination and is a result of cultural globalization. Source two is titled “Quebec Charter of Values Headgear Rules” where the cartoonist is satirizing the Quebec government for proposing a bill that demonstrates secularism. Secularism is the discouragement of wearing or displaying religious attire or symbols in public facilities. According to the cartoon, hijab, turbans, and religious hats are not acceptable, while the attire of Ku Klux Klan, a racist terrorist group, is acceptable. This indicates that the government of Quebec doesn’t see the fact that covering one’s face as inappropriate but prohibited it because of the religious meaning behind the head gear. A part of cultural globalization and a part of the fundamental freedom of The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom is freedom of religion, which this act violates. The cartoonist suggests that the Quebec government has racist attitude and is against globalization which includes acceptance of diversity.
An example of a government that supports this notion is the Parti Quebecois, who actively advocates in banning “overt or conspicuous” symbols in public. Likewise, a small town in Quebec name Herouxville is also greatly supportive of this act for they are very against immigration and diversity, specifically Muslims. The illustration in source three is a cartoon of a New Zealand stamp, featuring an aboriginal group of New Zealand.
It is an attempt of the government to recognize its aboriginal groups and an example of cultural revitalization. It is similar to Canada’s actions to preserve the French language by making bank notes bilingual in 1936 and postage stamps bilingual in 1927.It is easy for a minority group to be marginalized without government intervention. It might lead to a declination of a culture or extinction. For example, the Maori Culture of New Zealand practices a decoration process called Ta Moko, a spiritual tattoo that is crucial to their culture.
However after the arrival of Europeans missionaries and settlers, this practice was banned. After many decades, the Maori culture went under a renaissance with government aid and attracted global interest. Media attention helped Maori promote their culture and preserve their heritage. Through cultural globalization, many cultures are blended together and different aspects of a culture are transferred. Therefore you might see someone wearing Maori tattoos when they are not New Zealand aboriginals and Maori designs in films, clothing designs and exhibits that are not only in New Zealand, but all over the world.
It is evident that in all three sources, cultural globalization is presented and results or impacts of cultural globalization are also discussed. Cultural globalization brings and connects many different cultures together whether through immigration, media, force or conquest. Pressures of homogenization and assimilation demonstrated in source two can challenge individuals or groups to give up their identity and become a monoculture. Therefore government policies must be put in place in order to prevent discrimination and preserve the diversity of a country. For example Sikhs are required by religion to wear a turban at all times, however when a citizen applied for the position of an RCMP, he was declined because of the non acceptance of his head gear. Public pressured him to either give up his religion or not be an officer at all. On the other hand, based on the Canadian Multiculturalism Act in source 1, every individual is equal before and under the law and cannot be discriminated based on race, ethnicity, religion, etc. As a result, the Supreme Court ruled that this was a violation of his fundamental freedom and granted him permission to wear his turban while on duty as an RCMP officer.
Through cultural globalization, one culture might dominate the other. This might lead to marginalization of a culture and requires government negotiations with that culture to revitalize. An example of this was during the 20th century; missionaries converted many first nations into Christianity and forced the Inuit into permanent lands. Since the Multiculturalism Policy of Canada recognizes the rights of aboriginal peoples, 300,000 km squared of land was dedicated to the Inuit and the territory Nunavut was created in compensation. Cultural Globalization is a natural process when two or more cultures come in contact and result in a more interconnected world.
It is important to note that government interventions and revitalization of a culture is essential in preventing a group or culture from being discriminated or marginalized.