The Place of History in Multicultural Education, pp. 10 of 15

Instead of understanding and interrogating the repressive structure and mechanics of oppression, what is being offered is further embedment of social, political, economic and psychological power structures with the latter ranging from the “victimhood” as natural condition of life, displayed as grateful passivity complemented by subliminal and/or blatant retrospective distortion of history. Currently solipsistic colonial apologists are peddling the same dubious narratives of the past (Raskin, 2015) and they need to be challenged not just for the sake of the integrity of history education but also for the cause of a global, multicultural education. The penchant to deal with one of the most reprehensible episodes of global European colonialism is to de-emphasise it as a racist, exploitative global theft but one that ranges from the expected “ornamentalism” (Cannadine, 2001) of Eastern culture as the exotic “other” or to the contention that it was not so bad after all (Ferguson, 2003). Recognition as asserted by Charles Taylor is a “basic human need” (Taylor, 1994) but the interpretive representation of that visibility or recognition is equally significant.

Globalisation: Of Flags and Folklores

In a globalising world, the tourist approach of a cosmetic “showcasing” of culture and difference has now included the “flags, folklores” approach to transnational movement. It is expansion of the superficiality and safe interaction with difference of a global ‘other’. The operating mechanisms remain relatively similar in its reluctance to engage and interrogate critically the complexities of international affairs, the intertwining connections of historical legacies and current political-economic policies at transnational levels and how they ultimately will have relevance both within and beyond the classroom (Chakravorti, Dong, & Fedosova, 2014). Globalisation is not a new phenomenon but the pace and face has definitely left significant footprints in all facets of daily lives from the safe daily existence of a teacher in Seoul to the horrors of a refugee in the Middle East or to anxieties of climate change sufferers in Africa.

An Inspiring Quote

"[Open-mindedness] includes an active desire to listen to more sides than one; to give heed to facts from whatever source they come; to give full attention to alternative possibilities; to recognize the possibility of error even in the beliefs that are dearest to us."

~ John Dewey, How We Think

Newsletter Subscription

Subscribe to our newsletter and stay up-to-date with new journal issues!